The idea behind Xero expenses is that a user captures a receipt, and “we’ll take care of the less,” Xero expenses lead Samyak Shah told Xerocon 2017 attendees.
Xero has developed a separate mobile app for expenses, as most employees don’t need access to other accounting-related functions. This app, for iOS and Android, lets a user photograph a receipt and submit it as an expenses claim.
Behind the scenes, Xero extracts the relevant data and creates a corresponding transaction. Alternatively, the transaction can be entered in the traditional way via the main Xero web application, in which case the item can be entered on behalf of another person.
Either way, claims can be approved by an authorised person via the app or the web, and then approved claims can be paid as a batch or individually.
Other features of Xero expenses include reports such as a bar graph of a person’s expenses by category.
Xero expenses is now live for selected users ahead of a general rollout. Plans for further development include the addition of mileage claims.
Xero projects is designed to make it easy to capture, track and report on the time and money spent on each job.
Features will be added to support different market segments, to include architects, engineers, and larger accounting and legal firms.
Small business in Australia is fragmented and diverse, said Xero Australia managing director Trent Innes, so there will still be opportunities for boutique project management products that go beyond the basics that Xero will deliver. The company provides application programming interfaces (APIs) so developer partners can create add-ons that cater for more complex situations.
That said, Innes sees “a massive opportunity” for Xero projects because of the large number of customers in the professional services sector.
For businesses working with Xero accountants or bookkeeper can get free access to Xero projects for the rest of 2017. After that, the feature will cost $7 per user per month during an introductory period, and $10 per user per month thereafter.