The wonderful Shara Evans from Market Clarity interviewed me in the first in a new series exploring what the next decade might look like. Shara is a smart interviewer who does amazing background research and asks really interesting questions. The series will help provide material for a session she is presenting for Grahame Lynch’s CommsDay Summit in Sydney.
When setting up a business one of the critical elements is a good accounting system. Before GST it was possible to run a single employee consulting business from an invoice book and a shoe box for receipts but that was last century.
I have used single user and multi user accounting systems in businesses before and they have all sucked not least because the database needs to travel with the user. A business with two mobile users needs some sort of remote terminal access using Windows Remote Desktop or Citrix or the lovely built-in mechanisms in OSX.
Given the need for Internet access to use this you might as well do the entire thing “in the cloud”. Enter Xero.
You sign up for a free trial, tell Xero some details of your company and banking and you’re under way.
Then things get very interesting. Humans call you to check on your progress and offer help. They’re very keen to get you talking with accountants who are experts at Xero to ensure you have set up a good chart of accounts. The human support side of Xero is done very well.
You can record purchase orders, send them to suppliers, enter bills from suppliers, process payments to them and raise invoices to customers.
The entire service so far is working nicely. I must send some people some invoices 🙂
The next step is to get the automation working with the bank so that customer payments are processed automatically.