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Xero For Dummies, 2nd Edition

Book Description

Master Xero in a flash to streamline accounting and manage more effectively

Xero For Dummies is a user-friendly guide to the accounting software that's revolutionising the industry. Whether you're setting up Xero from scratch, converting to Xero from another accounting software, or just want to get more out of Xero, this book provides an in-depth understanding of how the software works, and how to use it to manage your business more effectively. This second edition has been updated to cover the new and improved features, including better file storage, purchase order, and report generation, extended coverage of the Xero add-on ecosystem, and more, with all new screenshots that show you exactly what to do. You'll learn how to automatically import and code bank transactions, set up accounts, customers, and suppliers, synchronise data, and generate reports that give you the information you need to manage your business more effectively.

Xero has changed the game in the accounting software industry. Their completely cloud-based single ledger system allows business owners to monitor their financial position in real time, and eliminates the need for endless data entry, backups, and software upgrades. Xero For Dummies is the only Xero-endorsed guide to getting the most out of the software, walking you through the basics to advanced use.

  • Save time reconciling with automatic imports and intuitive coding

  • Manage inventory, customers, suppliers, and more

  • Simplify accounts and deal with multi-currency transactions

  • Synchronise data seamlessly across multiple business platforms

  • From setting up your accounting system through to more detailed operational usage, this book contains tried-and-tested techniques that will help you optimise revenue, profits, and cash flow. Xero can streamline your accounting process and help you be a better manager — to wield it effectively, Xero For Dummies is the complete, informative guide you need.

    Table of Contents

      1. Foreword
      2. Introduction
        1. About This Book
        2. Foolish Assumptions
        3. Icons Used in This Book
        4. Beyond the Book
        5. Where to Go from Here
      3. Part I: Getting Started with Xero
        1. Chapter 1: Getting to Know Xero
          1. Understanding the Advantages of Xero
          2. Exploring Xero’s Different Editions
          3. Homepage: Checking Out the Dashboard
          4. Understanding Your Team Needs
          5. Integrating Xero into Your Strategic Planning
            1. Generating accurate, complete and timely data entry
            2. Introducing Management Reporting and analysis capabilities of Xero
          6. Taking Advantage of Support Options
          7. Using Xero in a Training Environment
        2. Chapter 2: Getting Organised: Setting Up Xero from Scratch
          1. Preparing for Set-Up
            1. Checking your browser and system requirements
            2. Collecting your business data
          2. Working through the Set-Up Guide
            1. Getting started
            2. Organisation Settings
            3. Financial Settings
            4. Invoice Settings
            5. Invite users
          3. Understanding Bookkeeping Basics
            1. Working out how account types affect your reports
            2. Creating a chart of accounts that works for you
            3. Developing your own chart of accounts
          4. Setting Up Your Chart of Accounts
            1. Using Xero’s default Chart of Accounts
            2. Customising your Chart of Accounts
          5. Putting Your Accounts into Practice
            1. Checking your conversion balances
            2. Adding Comparative Balances
            3. Entering historical invoices, bills and credit notes
          6. Adding Ways to Get Paid
            1. Setting up bank accounts
            2. Including credit cards
            3. Online payment options
          7. Tax Rates
        3. Chapter 3: Converting to Xero from Another System
          1. Preparing to Import Data from a Non-Accounting Program
            1. Converting paper-based records
            2. Working with spreadsheets
          2. Getting Ready to Convert from an Accounting Program
            1. Getting ready to convert
            2. Converting exported CSV files into Excel
            3. Preparing data for import
            4. Mapping tax rates
          3. Importing Data into Xero
            1. Chart of accounts
            2. Contacts
            3. Inventory items
            4. Sales
            5. Purchases
            6. Bank transactions
            7. Manual journals
            8. Fixed assets
            9. Unpresented payments or uncleared funds
          4. Turning Off Your Old System
            1. Accessing historical data
            2. Moving to the new system
            3. Confirming the switchover date
        4. Chapter 4: Fine-tuning Your Set-Up
          1. Tools of the Trade: Understanding the Dashboard
            1. Xero balance versus bank balance
            2. Account Watchlist
            3. Money Coming In
            4. Money Going Out
            5. Dealing with expense claims
          2. Setting Up Users
            1. Understanding user access levels
            2. Inviting other users to access Xero
          3. Taking Advantage of Live Bank Feeds
            1. Activating live bank feeds
            2. Organising bank accounts on your dashboard
            3. Managing bank feeds
          4. Manually Importing Statements
          5. Bank Rules
            1. Setting up bank rules
            2. Managing bank rules
          6. Using File Storage and the Xero Inbox
      4. Part II: Daily Activities
        1. Chapter 5: Managing Your Contacts
          1. Setting Up Customers
          2. Setting Up Suppliers
          3. Tweaking Your Contacts after Set-Up
            1. Finding your contacts
            2. Managing your contacts
            3. Grouping your contacts
            4. Merging your contacts
            5. Unpicking accidentally merged contacts
            6. Archiving your outdated contacts
          4. Setting Up Employees
          5. Utilising Smart Lists CRM Functionality
        2. Chapter 6: Managing Your Sales
          1. Navigating the Sales Dashboard
            1. Money Coming In
            2. Customers Owing the Most — list
            3. Customers Owing the Most — pie chart
          2. Mastering Basic Invoice Functions
            1. Creating a new sales invoice
            2. Saving, approving and cancelling invoices
            3. Sending an invoice to a customer
          3. Mastering More Advanced Invoice Functions
            1. Designing clear invoices for a positive cash flow
            2. Working with repeating invoices
            3. Invoicing contact groups
            4. Managing credit notes
          4. Recording Payments
            1. Receipting against sales invoices
            2. Sending receipts
            3. Recording income for a simple cash business
            4. Making use of batch payments
            5. Removing allocated payments
          5. Taking Advantage of Email Templates
            1. Defining your user email addresses
            2. Creating a new email template
            3. Deleting a template
            4. Connecting with contacts via social media
          6. Following Up on Outstanding Debtors
            1. Making use of statements
            2. Creating an Activity statement
            3. Creating an Outstanding statement
        3. Chapter 7: Managing Your Payables
          1. Navigating the Purchases Dashboard
          2. Managing Your Supplier Bills
            1. Creating a new bill
            2. Approving and cancelling bills
            3. Generating a purchase order
          3. Making Payments
            1. Recording an individual payment
            2. Recording batch payments
            3. Removing allocated payments
          4. Mastering Other Payment Considerations
            1. Printing bills
            2. Working with Repeating Bills
            3. Scheduling payments
            4. Stylising your check
            5. Sending remittance advice
            6. Managing credit notes
          5. Entering Expense Claims
            1. Adding a new expense claim
            2. Making mobile expense claims
            3. Submitting a claim for approval
            4. Reviewing and authorising the claim
            5. Paying the claim
        4. Chapter 8: Reconciling Your Bank Accounts
          1. Preparing to Reconcile
          2. Automagically Reconciling Accounts
            1. Understanding the hierarchy for matching
            2. Accepting transactions Xero has matched correctly
          3. Tweaking Transactions to Reconcile
            1. Matching misfit transactions
            2. Create
            3. Transfer
            4. Discuss
            5. Reviewing other possible matches
          4. Taking Advantage of Cash Coding
            1. Getting familiar with Cash Coding
            2. Understanding bulk coding
          5. Viewing Bank Statements
          6. Viewing Account Transactions
          7. Using the Spend Money and Receive Money Options
            1. Direct payment
            2. Prepayment
            3. Overpayment
            4. Underpayment
            5. Processing prepayments and overpayments
            6. Searching for a transaction
          8. Fixing Errors
            1. Resolving the difference between Xero balances and bank balances
            2. Unreconciling a bank transaction
            3. Removing and undoing a bank transaction
            4. What happens in life happens in Xero
      5. Part III: Making the Routine, Routine
        1. Chapter 9: Generating Reports
          1. Understanding the Reports Available in Xero
            1. Accessing Xero’s business reports
            2. Selecting your favourite reports
            3. Sorting and filtering
          2. Customising Reports
            1. Customising report layouts
            2. Adding reporting ‘bling’: Summaries, footnotes and charts
            3. Changing views
          3. Understanding Xero’s Different Reporting Options
            1. Draft
            2. Published
            3. Connecting reports
            4. Archived
          4. Exporting Reports
          5. Accessing Management Reports
        2. Chapter 10: Mastering Your Weekly and Monthly Tasks
          1. Confirming Accounts are Complete
          2. Reconciling Bank Accounts, Credit Card and Online Payment Gateway Accounts
          3. Reconciling Your Clearing Accounts
          4. Reconciling Your Consumer Tax Control Account
          5. Reviewing Your Business Information
            1. General Ledger Exceptions report
            2. Invoicing
            3. Aged Receivables
            4. Aged Payables
          6. Reporting to the Tax Office
            1. Australian reporting
            2. New Zealand reporting
            3. US reporting
            4. UK reporting
            5. Recording payments to the Tax Office
          7. Taking Advantage of Xero’s Budget Functions
            1. Creating a budget
            2. Reviewing and editing your budget
          8. Setting a Period Lock Date
        3. Chapter 11: End of Financial Year Reporting
          1. Getting Ready for the End of Financial Year
            1. Finding out where you’re at
            2. Being prepared early
            3. Reconciling tax payments for the year
            4. Processing a bad debt
          2. Preparing Accounts for Your Tax Accountant
          3. Helping with Tax Accountant Tasks
            1. Enabling your tax accountant to work directly in Xero
            2. Exporting general ledger transactions
            3. Entering manual journals
          4. Special Considerations
            1. Publishing end-of-year reports
            2. Locking down accounts
      6. Part IV: Getting the Most Out of Xero
        1. Chapter 12: Monitoring Your Business
          1. Identifying Key Metrics
            1. Using Xero to set realistic targets and strategies
            2. Setting KPIs and rewarding success
            3. Reviewing your business strategy
          2. Generating Useful Information
            1. Taking advantage of management reports
            2. Delving deeper into the Executive Summary report
            3. Performance Management reports
            4. Position Management reports
            5. Detail reports
            6. Customising the Management Report
          3. Understanding Xero’s Tracking Options
            1. Using Tracking
            2. Working out what your business should track
            3. Setting up Tracking
            4. Editing, deleting and applying Tracking options
            5. Reviewing Tracking reports
            6. Tracking conversion balances
          4. Maintaining Budget Control: Budget Manager
        2. Chapter 13: Managing Your Inventory Items
          1. Understanding Inventory Items
            1. Periodic and perpetual inventory
            2. Defining inventory accounts
          2. Setting Up a Xero Inventory Item
            1. Creating inventory items
            2. Importing and exporting item details
          3. Managing Inventory Items
            1. Making use of inventory items reports
            2. Searching for and reviewing inventory items
            3. Editing and deleting inventory items
          4. Adjusting Inventory Balances
            1. Periodic stocktakes
            2. Adjusting inventory values
            3. Adjusting inventory quantities
          5. Accessing Add-On Solutions
        3. Chapter 14: Working with Fixed Assets
          1. Recognising Fixed Assets
            1. Entering a fixed asset into the register
            2. Dealing with depreciation
            3. Selling or removing a fixed asset from the register
          2. Accessing Fixed Asset Reports
        4. Chapter 15: Working with Multi-Currency Transactions
          1. Setting Up Multi-Currency in Xero
            1. Upgrading your Xero plan
            2. Adding currencies to Xero
          2. Processing Multi-Currency Transactions in Xero
            1. Understanding tax rates
            2. Working with foreign currency exchange rates
            3. Creating a foreign currency invoice
            4. Purchasing in a foreign currency
          3. Conversion Balances and Multi-Currency Bank Accounts
          4. Viewing Reports in Foreign Currency
        5. Chapter 16: Xero Online Network
          1. Working with Xero to Xero Networks
          2. Understanding the Benefits and Risks of Add-On Solutions
            1. Ascertaining implementation costs
            2. Looking at longevity
            3. Checking response times
            4. Understanding intellectual property security
          3. Making Use of Online Cloud Integration Specialists
          4. Getting a Feel for Available Solutions
            1. Connectors
            2. CRMs
            3. Debtor tracking
            4. e-commerce
            5. Bills and expenses
            6. Inventory
            7. Job tracking
            8. Payments
            9. Payroll
            10. Point of sale
            11. Time tracking
            12. Reporting
          5. Looking at Custom Integration
      7. Part V: The Part of Tens
        1. Chapter 17: Ten (Plus One!) Tips for Long-Term Success with Xero
          1. Embrace the Cloud
          2. Make Use of Networking Technology
          3. Export Data to Create Graphs
          4. Set up Bank Feeds and Reconcile Regularly
          5. Use the Batch Payments Feature
          6. Keep Bank Accounts for Business Use
          7. Embrace Change
          8. Use Tracking to Sharpen Reporting
          9. Take Advantage of Repeating Bills and Invoices
          10. Collaborate with Your Xero Advisory Team
          11. Effectively Tap into Online Storage Features
        2. Chapter 18: Ten Common Mistakes Made in Xero and How to Avoid Them
          1. Not Making Use of Expert Help
          2. Not Understanding Terminology Differences
          3. Messing Up Bank Reconciliation Autosuggestions
          4. Using a Communal User Account
          5. Not Deleting Old User Accounts
          6. Thinking Your Xero Emails are Stored
          7. Not Realising the Subscriber Owns and Controls the Data
          8. Trying to Make Xero Do what Your Old System Did
          9. Watching Your Bank Feeds Refresh
          10. Paying Full Price If You’re a NFP
      8. Index
      9. About the Author
      10. Business & Investing
      11. Connect with Dummies