From XU Magazine, 
Issue 30

Updates from Xero

What we’ve been working on...

New predictions feature for bank reconciliation

At Xero, we recently reached a significant milestone in our artificial intelligence (AI) strategy with the roll out of new bank reconciliation predictions. The predictions feature has introduced a new application of AI to the Xero platform, to reduce manual data entry and save businesses time. 

The new feature uses machine learning to predict the contact and account code for transactions that cannot be matched to invoices or bills using an organisation’s bank rules, Xero’s matching logic, or memorisations. Previously, businesses had to manually enter new contacts or account codes to reconcile these transactions — a time-consuming process that risks manual error. 

Bank reconciliation predictions add to our growing portfolio of AI-enabled product features, designed to help businesses and advisors plan for the future with confidence. 

Xerocon Sydney confirmed for September

We have confirmed Xerocon, the unmissable event for cloud accounting leaders, is coming back to Sydney in 2022. The ‘Coachella for accountants’ event is a chance for thousands of accountants and bookkeepers to connect, learn and get inspired. 

We’ve been unable to host Xerocon in person for the past two years as a result of the pandemic, but we’ve learnt that nothing replaces the power of face-to-face interactions and we’re very excited to finally be bringing the accounting industry together. 

Xerocon Sydney will be taking place from 7-8 September 2022.

Other Xero updates...

We’ve made a number of other updates on the Xero platform over the past month, including:

Global

GoCardless direct debit forms in Xero

We’ve made it easier for users to import direct debit forms from GoCardless and match them to contacts in Xero, even if they were created elsewhere. Users can now manually match these forms to specific contacts and continue to collect all future payments for that contact using GoCardless in Xero.

Simplifying inventory management

If looking at product or service items in the inventory list, users can now see a summary of key information at the top of the page. The editing button is more easily available and identical to the item creation page. Before confirming any adjustments, users will now be shown not only what has changed, but by how much.

Improving staff access in Xero HQ

We are making it faster and easier for users to edit staff access to Xero organisations with improved bulk actions. Now when selecting multiple clients, users will be able to edit staff access to their subscriptions in one go, with the full list of role types available.

Easy expense management for employees 

The new Budget Variance report is being refreshed with a new design and some updates to help with financial analysis. Our users will be able to access the layout editor to format reports and view arrows to better understand budget variance formulas. We’ve also included the ability to sort by account code in the new ‘More’ button.

Assign different permission levels in Xero Projects 

We’ve released new functionality in Xero Projects that allows admin users to assign staff to different projects and decide what they can and can’t see using different levels of visibility. You can now mark a project as public or private, so you can control who can see project information.

Australia

Report payroll information for STP Phase 2 

To help accountants prepare for the STP Phase 2 compliance date at the end of the year, we’ve launched a new STP2 Information Hub. Users simply click the banner from the overview dashboard within Xero Payroll to find the latest information on new pay items, including bonuses and commissions, directors fees and cashed-out leave. 

US

Stay compliant with the 2021 Schedule C report template 

We’ve released a 2021 Schedule C report template (View in Spanish) to help US advisors prepare income and expenses for sole proprietor tax returns. It’s now available as an option in their report templates. To make sure there’s no confusion, we’ve removed the default template for 2020. Users will still have access to customised templates, as well as templates that have been saved or published in their client organisations.

Xero business update...

Xero included in 2022 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index 

As part of Xero’s continuing commitment to gender equality, we are proud to announce our inclusion in the 2022 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI). This is the third consecutive year we have been included in the index, and we’re pleased to see our scores improve each year. The index is made up of 418 global companies spanning 45 countries who are committed to a more equal and inclusive workplace

Canada

Xero acquires TaxCycle to simplify tax in Canada

Xero has acquired TaxCycle, a leading Canadian tax preparation software company for accountants and bookkeepers. Together with TaxCycle, Xero is striving to make year-end tax simpler and more beautiful for our Canadian customers. 

Based in Calgary, Alberta, TaxCycle was founded in 2010 by Canadian tech industry veteran Cameron Peters. Cameron created some of the first tax software for electronic filing in the mid-90s and has been continually innovating in the space since then. TaxCycle’s software provides a full Canadian income tax suite, with almost 4,000 tax firms and over 16,000 individual accountants, bookkeepers and tax preparers using its solution. 

This acquisition advances Xero’s commitment to extend and enhance our product offering to Canadian customers, following recent additions such as provincial sales tax return reports and Canada chart of accounts templates.

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