In the US, the future of accounting has arrived via Xerocon San Francisco and we’ll be unveiling all the details starting tomorrow. But, first, let’s wrap up Xero US Summer Camp.
Summer Camp was a packed month of training – one live, online course every business day. For accounting professionals, there were 16 unique courses, 16 CPE credits available, webinars, podcasts and a Xero t-shirt up for grabs.
Summer Camp was well received with almost 200 Xero partners attending over the month and with some partners attending over 10 sessions. The top three webinars were “Becoming a Virtual CFO”, “Marketing for Accounting Professionals” and “Grow Your Practice Using an Entrepreneurial Mindset”. If you missed them, go to the Xero Summer Camp page to watch the recordings (we are still working to post some of them). For small businesses, there were options as well with five courses offered. We thank you all, both accounting professionals and small businesses, for your time and interest in Xero.
We were overjoyed with the turnout of over 900 people in what is now easily Australia’s largest technology conference for the accounting industry. It’s a big statement and one I wouldn’t have believed possible after the first of our annual conferences in Melbourne in 2011 with a modest 130 partners in tow.
Thank you everyone who made the content so relevant and compelling. We had over 40 speakers over the two days. Many were partners who gave up their time to provide valuable insights and practical lessons learned in their journey to the cloud.
A huge highlight of the Xerocon Sydney 2013 Awards Dinner on Friday was the band entirely made up of Xero staff and partners. A call went out beforehand to staff and Xero partners to see what talent was out there and we received an amazing response. People with an amazing range of talents and interest in different genres from Funk, Jazz, Metal, Rock and Classical. From managing directors to bookkeeping singing teachers, everyone brought something special to the table.
Larissa McKay sang beautifully performing her own material during the solo sessions and there were booming renditions of Joe Cocker by Wayne Triplett – it was hard to believe that this was his first time singing in a band.
If you haven’t seen it, note yesterday’s Live Blog
We’re back for Day 2 at Xerocon Sydney. To get you warmed up, while we’re waiting for everything to kick off, check out this time lapse photo of yesterday’s exhibition area from our photographer for the event Alexander Kesselaar, if it doesn’t show then try clicking on this link.
Peter Switzer is back, giving a bit of kudos to the event, especially the audience, announcing some prize winners, a bit of housekeeping, a bit of self-promo (obligatory book being held up – bit of a laugh) and why not! A great choice for MC.
Let’s get on with the show!
Xero Australia Managing Director Chris Ridd is up and this will be both a celebration of what Xero and partners have achieved as well as where together we can go in Australia. Think of the first Australian Xerocon with 130 people compared to the crowd we have today, and as Chris says, it’s only just beginning.
The interlude called drinks at the end of Day 1 at Xerocon Australia is the chance to network and hear some lovely stories. Like the time four Gen-Ys randomly met on the way to an accounting conference.
Coming from all over Australia, these four young women sharing the Xerocon experience tonight are determined to stamp their individual marks on the business world in the areas of accounting and bookkeeping.
Rebecca and Gemma met in the lobby of their hotel, both looking for directions to the Australian Technology Park, they got to chatting and realised they weren’t just going to the same conference, but both had similar backgrounds in accounting and had created their own businesses to get a better work-life balance.
Here we are at Xerocon Sydney 2013. What an amazing location at the Australian Technology Park.
I caught up with our CEO Rod Drury before the conference started and he was saying how in the beginning they dreamed that one day we’d have conferences in multiple countries, with multiple streams, guest speakers and a big trade show.
Well it happened. Xerocon Sydney is kicking off with over 900 people and a massive trade show. We believe this is a little bit larger than the Microsoft Australian partner Conference last week and believe it is also Australia’s biggest accounting conference.
We’re live blogging today and tomorrow with loads of pictures and posts, so check back regularly. Follow twitter activity on #xerocon or see the #xerocon wall on strea.ma. Also, there’s loads more photos during the day in our flickr album
Next door there are 53 exhibitors, which is massive.
Looking around the exhibition stands the breadth of solutions and services is incredible – from the full range of Add-ons to integrators and technology services.
Spotlight Dashboard is a drag-and-drop performance dashboard providing a visual focus on key financial and non-financial KPIs. Dashboards can be created in minutes, shared online via iPad or laptop – or printed from PDF. Dashboard is designed as an easy and low cost option for advisers wanting to provide value-added services.
Dashboards utilise the power of the Xero single ledger, but also integrate with Google Analytics for a view of web activity for an organisation. Excel import functionality allows other data sources to be added if needed also.
Who is it for?
Spotlight Dashboard is great for accounting and bookkeeper practices looking to proactively work with their clients. It’s an ideal tool for smaller businesses, start-ups and other results-focused teams.
“I challenge my team to create and discuss client Dashboards. These are then shared with me so we can make sure that the client gets the best report and advice. Super-fast, super-easy.” – Steph Hinds, CEO of Australian Xero Partner of the Year firm Growthwise
UPDATE (30 Sept, 2013) – the new calculator was released to sales invoices, bills and spend/receive money grids
While still actively working on some of our bigger projects (in particular, improved reporting and purchase orders) we’ve just sneaked in a brand new feature we’ve been working on. We’re calling it the inbuilt calculator because, well, it’s a calculator and it’s built-in. It helps you enter data using simple formula rather than having to pull out your pocket calculator. Also nice to be able to make progress on another top ten Community feature request.
It’s not been introduced everywhere yet though – we wanted to get your feedback first. So head on over to the Manual Journals screen to give it a test drive. Note this is only available for users with the Adviser (previously known as Financial Adviser) role.
Here’s how it works.
Enter a formula into either the Debit or Credit column,
tab (or click) away and voila, the result appears.
Delivering value for attendees is the main focus when we plan for Xerocon. But we never expected it to be a substitute for the annual staff Christmas party.
This year Xero Platinum Partner Curtis McLean have made the call to skip their traditional staff party. Instead, they have decided to take their entire 36-strong team to Xerocon New Zealand in early 2014.
We caught up with Paul Pettit from Curtis McLean to hear all about it, and he also talks about who best to send to the conference if you can’t send the whole team:
The conference is held in all countries where we have offices. Over the next two months we have conferences coming up in Sydney, San Francisco and London.
Beautifully designed accounting software and an industry dedicated to creating beautiful things – what could be a better fit? Creatives don’t want to be tied to their offices crunching numbers. Their work can take them everywhere and anywhere, so they live in the cloud through their Macs, and Xero suits them to a T.
So, how do you tap into the creative industry to grow your client base? It’s all about getting to know them and communicating the benefits of your services. And that’s marketing.
“But I’m an accountant, not a marketer”, you may say. Not a problem. We’ve developed a creative industry marketing playbook that takes you through the steps to successfully market your practice to the creative industry.