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5 Time saving Xero Tips to make your life easier

5 Time saving Tips to make life easier for Xero Users

To make your life easier we’ve highlighted 5 top tips that you may not know about – to make working in Xero Accounts more efficient and speedier.

Xero Tips to save you time

Tip #1 Get the Xero Touch App for free.

This will mean you can see and process your accounts on the go or from anywhere you have an internet connection. But you can also snap a photo of a receipt, upload and process it there and then OR store the phot to Files and deal with it later. No more lost bits of paper, receipts or invoices. If you’re VAT registered keeping an on-line copy of a bill with your accounts will make that next VAT return easier, and you’ll have copies of your paperwork with you wherever you are.

Tip #2 Trip Catcher app for mileage claims and vat reclaim.

If you drive your car on business it can be hard work keeping records that satisfy HMRC and it is easy to forget those small trips because they are just too much trouble. Using a mileage App like Trip Catcher can make this so much easier. With just a few taps on your smart phone you can capture all of the information you need when you make the trip. You can then send it to Xero or to Receipt Bank if you have automated your bookkeeping processes. This will save you time, give you the feeling of control and allow you to check mileage claims from the staff team.

Tip #3 Keep contacts up to date

If you take the time to complete the details in contacts, you’re all ready for invoicing your customers or you can contact suppliers fast, at the click of a mouse. No more logging on to other systems, no more hunting around for phone numbers, guarantee certificates or engineers numbers. You can then use smart lists to create simple CRM lists or export the lot to an Add-On CRM app to do more meaty marketing. Don’t forget you can import a contacts list into Xero as  CSV file too.

Tip #4 Credit Control on Xero

When you e-mail or call a late payer, make use of the “payment due” dates in Xero, and use “Notes” to add a comment about what was agreed. Xero will automatically add the date and the user for you. That way you can keep track of your credit control conversations and follow up as needed. It’s also visible to anyone you’ve given user access to, so anyone of your team can follow the process and make sure you get paid.

There are lots of excellent Xero Add-Ons for credit control reminders, but for a low cost, low volume DIY approach follow our tip.

Tip #5 The very useful Xero to Xero key

If you hate paper invoices, and you get lots of bills and receipts sent to you electronically there are now many solutions to the task of then re-keying a bill into your Xero accounts. If you deal with suppliers who also use Xero, give them your Xero To Xero key number and they can send the bill direct to your Xero draft bills to pay, on your dashboard.

So save yourself time and ask suppliers on Xero to deliver their invoice (linked to their account and coded to the ledger) into your draft invoices in Xero. All you have to do is approve the invoice. You can return the favour by doing the same for your customers and making their lives easier. All you have to do is exchange your Xero Key with anyone who wants to do business with you this way, and setting up some default General Ledger codes for your suppliers. Another time saving feature of Xero Accounting Software.

Throughout this post we’ve added in links to the detailed How To websites for you.

Tips from a Cafe Accountant

Here’s our top bookkeeping tips for cafe owners.

Cafe Bookkeepers

Every business is busy. Hopefully you’re busy on profit generating activities, and not just busy being busy. Cafes and coffee shops, in particular, can have massively busy periods of the day. You know how fast time flies when you’re serving at lunchtimes or breakfast times. These are times when having processes and systems followed by all the team, really pays off.

Here are our top tips to busy cafe owners to keep control and focus on profit making activity.

  1. Use Xero.  Join the many cafe owners already using the best cloud accounting software there is to save valuable time on the paperwork. Xero is affordable and real time. With your bank transactions fed straight in, available on any device – your tablet, phone or laptop, you can keep up to date from within your cafe. You can manage inventory items, contacts, key files and documents, sales and payroll – all from Xero.
  2. When stock is received – Check the order and the delivery note. Cafes tend to have high order and delivery volumes, and it’s easy to be overcharged or have the incorrect items delivered, both situations causing inconvenience to you. There’s nothing worse than running out of take away coffee cups or milk, during your rush hour.
  3. Keep an inventory list.  Use Xero to create a list of all you buy and supply. Or use one of the many business apps that link seamlessly into Xero. Why? Knowing what you’ve got in stock and how quickly stock turns over, will become key performance indicators for your business.
  4. Keep all cafe paperwork in one central place and ensure you all know that is the system. This is a low cost, sure fire success tip. All paperwork in one place only. This means anyone doing the bookkeeping, scanning receipts, checking deliveries can access all the papers. Once it’s been processed – keep in somewhere else. It’s a simple in-and-out system, use coloured box files to make it even easier, simple and economical.
  5. Keep all your supplier and equipment information in one central place. This will be a file of all the necessary phone numbers, serial numbers, guarantees, service phone numbers, health inspectors, certificates and help lines. Basically, all your key info, that any staff can access, for when things break, stop, need servicing etc. Keep a physical copy and an on-line file in your cloud storage. That way, if it’s power failure or wi fi failure, you can still act fast to prevent total disaster.

Finally, let your accountant be your friend! Once you know that the key reason for looking at your past financial data is so you can plan for your future, you can access more powerful & useful information. If you want to grow your cafe, you’ll find time saving bookkeeping apps will be life changing, and once you start forecasting things like cashflows and profits you can see your business plans in financial pictures – this helps if you need to raise finance, helps you have clarity of thought and lets you analyse your cafe performance versus others in the cafe industry.

Get in touch to find out more.

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Top tips from the cafe accountant

How to save time on data entry

Receipt Bank App with Shaper AccountantsSo here’s the big claim “Receipt Bank is just a little bit magical.”

Here’s our story of how we found the App that saves you time and money on bookkeeping. It captures all your bits of paper on the go with the free mobile phone app. A few years ago when we investigated this data entry app and found it difficult to use – it was quicker to process expenses direct to Xero, which is what we did.

As Xero awarded Receipt Bank “Add-On Partner” awards, Receipt Bank got better and better.

In 2014 we re-visited Receipt Bank.

We saw improvements and changes on a weekly basis, tweeks and adjustments here and there, until we were smiling our way through data entry via the free phone app. It’s fair to say that once the interface with Xero became slicker, the days of frustration were a faded memory. Indeed, for newer team members they just think it’s great. Is it magical? Just a little bit.

What’s the magic? You get your account set up by us – you will be using Xero accounting software, because that’s what we’re experts in, and that’s the best there is. You download the free App to your phone. You sign in and then just take photos of your receipts, bills, parking tickets etc. We collect them and send them to your Xero accounts, ready to match up.

Watch the video here and start seeing how your business life can become a little bit magical too.

You can contact a helpful Shaper Accountant on 01603 516 304 or e-mail

Xero Silver Partners Shaper Accountants Bookkeeping with receipt bank Follow us on Twitter @ShaperAccounts