From helping clients stay afloat to unpacking fast-moving legislation, FY21 has been an incredibly demanding year for advisors. Faced with a sea of competing priorities to contend with, keeping up with the latest practice app releases and updates may have proved challenging. Now, as we prepare to enter the new financial year, the time has come to pause and take stock – complete with a little help from the Xero team.
An integral part of building a resilient practice is embracing the digital tools that will streamline and simplify tax time and everything in between. Over the past year, our practice app ecosystem has unleashed a host of innovative new releases and features for exactly this purpose. Designed to give you back the time you need, they’re set to support you with everything from preparing engagement letters to cash flow forecasting.
While it’s near impossible to pick our favourites, we’ve rounded up some of the app highlights for BAS agents and accountants that you may have missed in time for EOFY:
Streamline engagement letters with Engage
Made to help save you precious time and put your best foot forward with clients, ChangeGPS can now assist with preparing engagement letters thanks to its new Engage app. Engage seamlessly connects to Xero Practice Manager (XPM) to access client data and provides letter templates with over 40 service descriptions (as well as ethical letters). Best of all, this app isn’t only designed to automate the engagement letter process; it also helps you price your services more effectively.
Plan into the future with Fathom’s Forecasting tool
After two years in the making, Fathom introduced its new forecasting function to the world in November 2020. The tool’s three-way forecasts use the indirect method to aid you with long-term planning up to three years into the future. This includes features such as micro-forecasts, which keep things in check by setting up individual forecasts for different business events. In addition, the business roadmap function offers a dynamic timeline view of all micro-forecasts as well as cash position and key business metrics.
Discover next gen hybrid forecasting with Futrli Predict
Futrli has complemented its popular Advisor product with the release of Predict, a hybrid forecasting app that combines outstanding invoices and bills with historical profit and loss and balance sheet performance. The result? You’re provided with a complete and accurate cash flow picture, alongside projections of short, medium and long term performance.
Likened to a ‘sat-nav for small business’, Predict is a great solution for when you need a low-touch way to provide clients with visibility over their financial future.
Uncover the bigger picture with Consolidated Forecasting
This past year reminded small businesses and advisors alike of the importance of knowing your numbers. In response, Spotlight Reporting has evolved their cash flow forecasting capabilities with the launch of Consolidated Forecasting. This helpful tool is designed to remove roadblocks by enabling you to feed your forecasts or scenarios into a single consolidated forecast (this includes multi-currency consolidations for up to 75 entities) – allowing you to see the bigger picture.
Tailor proposals with Practice Ignition’s new editor
Practice Ignition has worked to reimagine the proposal creation experience from the ground up by revamping their proposal editor tool. Complete with a new and improved layout, you can now tailor each proposal to perfectly suit your clients. This includes the option to bill variable prices (including unit based – per head, per hour) on a recurring basis, as well as multiple proposal options. All in all, you’re able to present clients with numerous packages, offer different payment terms, and even experiment with a new pricing model.
Kielley Edwards and her team at Atlas Administration Services recently added bookkeeping to their range of business administration services – and Practice Ignition’s new proposal editor has been a key tool in helping with the transition.
Kielley says the firm started using the editor tool earlier this year and it has become a lifesaver. She explains, “Being able to tailor each proposal to individual clients has made the entire experience so much easier and all the more personalised.”
Like the team at Atlas, by seeking out the apps that best suit the needs of your practice and clients, you’ll be set to boost efficiency and strengthen relationships. And remember, many of the apps in Xero’s app marketplace offer obligation free trials so you can ensure you find the right fit.