Getting Bookkeeping Help for Xero

Part of running a business is finding ways to streamline processes and simplify the working day. Using dedicated software for various business areas is one way to do this. Specialized software automates many tasks and frees up time for you. Accounting and bookkeeping is one area that businesses are keen to automate since, for many, it’s complicated and time-consuming. However, many business owners are put off using accounting software because they feel it’s too time-consuming or difficult to learn. We’re here to tell you that it’s not as complicated as you may think. Having dedicated software plus a bookkeeper to take care of your finances will make life easier for you. Our recommendation for accounting software in 2022 is Xero, and here’s why.

We offer you the services of a professional team to take hold of your everyday finances. If you want your business to be successful, but there just never seems to be enough hours in the day for all things business related, we can help with that! Whether you have been in business for a while or this is a new startup, we’ve got your needs covered.

We specialize in serving small to medium-sized businesses and startups who find themselves anywhere from their idea stage up to early growth stages. Even if your company has yet to hit the ground, we are here to answer your financial questions.

What is Xero Software?

Xero online accounting software is dedicated to bookkeeping and financial reporting. It automates the day-to-day tasks required for accounting and reconciling. We love it because it’s super easy to get to grips with, which makes it perfect for small businesses and startups. Xero is fully cloud-based, allowing you to access the platform from any device, anywhere in the world, at any time. It integrates with payment systems as well as over 1,000 other apps. Here’s what it allows you to do:

  • Connect directly to your bank accounts
  • Automate invoicing and financial reports
  • Give joint access to your bookkeeper or accountant
  • Pay bills automatically
  • Accept payments
  • Track and claim expenses
  • Understand your cash flow
  • Track projects
  • File taxes with ease

What Size Businesses Use Xero Software?

Xero is ideal for businesses with 10–50 employees. Its simplicity and ease of use are great for young startups that don’t directly employ any accounting or bookkeeping professionals.

While the software is designed perfectly for smaller companies, you can scale up your plan to adapt to a larger business. In fact, Xero itself employs around 1,000 members of staff and uses its own software to manage its accounting.

What Industries is Xero Used For?

How Does Xero Accounting Software Work?

Xero is a cloud-based platform that can be used on tablets, mobile devices, and computers. You can give access to as many people as you like. For example, if you employ a virtual bookkeeper, they can have access to the same data as you do.

Once set up, the software automatically performs daily, repetitive bookkeeping tasks like sending and receiving payments, sending invoices, and reconciling books.

Three different pricing plans are available, starting from $22 to $47. Depending on your choice, you will have access to the range of features associated with your plan. When you want or need to scale up, you can do so at the click of a button. Payment is taken on a monthly basis, so you’re not locked into any lengthy contract, and you can cancel at any time.

What Types of Accounting Systems Does Xero Allow For?

Xero supports both cash-based and accrual accounting systems. Ideal for businesses that have to adhere to IFRS 17 and GAAP principles.

Is Xero Difficult to Learn?

Learning to use Xero isn’t a cakewalk, but it’s not super difficult either. There is definitely a learning curve to go through, particularly if you’ve never used accounting software before.

Fortunately, Xero has a plethora of learning resources and a Xero accounting tutorial to enable you to get to grips with the platform at your own pace. As a complete beginner, if you work through the courses at a reasonable pace, you can expect to have a working knowledge of the system within a month.

How Similar is Xero to Quickbooks?

When it comes to accounting software, Quickbooks is still king. However, Xero bookkeeping software is catching up fast in terms of usability and features.

One big advantage is that Xero allows unlimited users on a single pricing plan, whereas Quickbooks is far more limited in this respect. On the other hand, Quickbooks was designed specifically with small businesses in mind, so their interface is initially easier to get to grips with.

Thanks to the in-built inventory management, Quickbooks is a great option for businesses that need to track and count inventory – an area that Xero doesn’t quite stack up as well in. Where Xero excels is project profitability and international scaling.

Ultimately, it depends on your needs as to which system is better for you. Although, with Xero services, we feel you get more for your money.

How to Know if You Need Bookkeeping Help

If your business is scaling fast, bookkeeping can be a full-time job. Or, if you’re a new startup, getting your head around it, all can seem like an impossible task. Unfortunately, bookkeeping is essential, so there’s no avoiding it.

If you’re wondering if it’s time to hire a bookkeeper, these are the signs to look out for:

  • The struggle to keep on top of the day-to-day financials is getting out of hand
  • Your business is growing fast, and so are the accounting tasks that go with it
  • You simply aren’t a numbers person
  • Help is required to understand the health of the business, your cash flow, and/or liquidity
  • To free up more time to focus on other core business areas
  • Tax season is imminent
  • You want to make better cost savings

What are the Primary Responsibilities of a Bookkeeper?

A bookkeeper is your financial savior who will take care of all your daily financial tasks. While there is a small overlap between a bookkeeper and an accountant, it’s important to understand they are not alike. A bookkeeper can take care of:

  • Document and process financial transactions
  • Produce statements
  • Manage the general ledger
  • Payroll processing
  • Send and receive payments
  • Prepare bank deposits
  • Expense tracking
  • Invoice and receipts management
  • Financial reporting
  • Ensuring the business remains compliant

An accountant, on the other hand, will provide analysis and consultation to advise you on how to handle your finances. They are also qualified to properly deal with taxes.

How Can Professional Bookkeepers Help With Xero?

Xero was designed for bookkeepers, so the two go hand in hand. Your bookkeeper will be able to efficiently use the software to manage and take care of your company’s finances. 

Your bookkeeper will have access to all the data stored on the software, and so will you. Therefore, it makes data sharing really straightforward since you’re using the same system.

Xero accountants and bookkeepers will also help you with anything you don’t understand. Thanks to their intimate knowledge of the system and Xero bookkeeping services, they can guide you through any areas you don’t understand.

The Benefits of Hiring a Bookkeeper to Help Manage Your Account

Worth their weight in gold, a bookkeeper provides many different benefits to a new business:

  • Reduces the margin for errors and mistakes
  • Keeps everything organized and up to date
  • Cost-efficient (especially if you choose a virtual bookkeeper)
  • Gives you back valuable time
  • Restores a better work/life balance
  • Allows you to redirect your focus to areas that need it more

Is It Effective to Hire a Virtual Bookkeeper?

It’s not always practical or affordable to hire a full-time bookkeeper. Perhaps you don’t have the office space available to accommodate one, or you may not have enough work to warrant having an in-house bookkeeper. 

For these reasons, hiring a virtual bookkeeper is a great solution. You don’t need to provide office space for them, and you don’t need to hire them full-time. In most cases, you only pay for what you need.

Your virtual bookkeeper will use cloud-based software such as Xero books to keep you in full view and abreast of your business’s finances.

What Are Good Questions to Ask a Potential Bookkeeper?

Before you go ahead and hire a bookkeeper, it’s important to understand if you’ll like their working style. More vitally, you need to work out if you feel you’re going to have a good working relationship and rapport with this person. After all, you’re entrusting them with the company finances. Some good questions to ask a bookkeeper are:

  • What inspired you to become a bookkeeper?
  • What do you know about my business industry?
  • It’s your first day on the job; what are your priorities?
  • How do you go about rectifying mistakes you spot?
  • How do you like to communicate?
  • What do you like to do outside of work?

What Qualifications Should I Look For?

At the bare minimum, your bookkeeper should have a high school diploma or GED. Even better is if your bookkeeper has gained an associate degree in bookkeeping.

There are also many accredited bookkeeping courses out there, and your bookkeeper may have chosen this route rather than obtaining a degree. Both paths of education are equally valid.

Ultimately experience is what matters most in this line of work, so you should look for someone with at least two full years of bookkeeping experience. Internships and training placements definitely count toward experience.

Are Bookkeepers Industry-Specific?

There are certainly bookkeepers out there who have chosen to specialize in a specific business niche. The advantage to these bookkeepers is that they will have gained much experience in dealing with that industry and will know how to better handle the finances accordingly.

That said, it’s not essential that your bookkeeper specializes in your industry. As long as they have the relevant experience and qualifications, your bookkeeper will handle your finances just fine.

How to Work Effectively With Your Bookkeeper to Ensure Timely and Accurate Financial Reporting

We can’t stress how important it is to set expectations right from the start. As soon as you bring a bookkeeper on board, you need to have a discussion about what you expect them to do. The bookkeeper will then set out their way of working so you can find a way of working that makes you both happy.

You must also establish a clear and effective communication method. Maybe it’s a scheduled Zoom call, or perhaps you prefer an instant messaging tool like Slack. Either way, determine how and when your bookkeeper is going to check in with you.

Remember, communication works both ways. Your bookkeeper isn’t a mind reader, so if you’re not happy with something or you want something done a different way, ensure you have a proper and constructive conversation with them about it. By doing so, you’ll both be clear about what’s expected, and it keeps the working relationship on good terms.

How to Find the Right Professional to Help With Xero

With EvolveCFO, you need look no further. We offer all the benefits and expertise of virtual bookkeeping plus all of our qualified professionals use Xero, so you’re getting great staff with great software.

While we’re not industry-specific, we specialize in young businesses and startups, so if you’re just getting off the ground, we can help you. Our plans are budget-friendly, meaning you only pay for the services you need. As you scale, our services can scale with you.

There’s never been an easier, more convenient way to get the bookkeeping services you need, along with the benefits of Xero. Why not get in touch with EvolveCFO to discover more about our virtual bookkeepers and other services?