It’s hard to describe the feeling of connecting with Xero’s amazing accounting and bookkeeping community in person again after nearly three years. Whether it was from up on stage, walking the exhibition floor, or catching up at the fabulous Xerocon party, it was an absolute privilege and has left me buzzing.
I was thrilled to host two keynote sessions at Xerocon London, to give our attendees some insights into what we’ve been up to in the customer space and how we should all be thinking about how to set up your practice for the customer of tomorrow, and importantly the role of digital adoption in all of this.
Xero Small Business Insights and getting ready for what’s next
On Wednesday morning, I was joined by Alex von Schirmeister, Managing Director, UK & EMEA, on stage where Alex shared some insights into his time at Xero so far and his passions for really working with our partners to help small businesses in the UK and EMEA.
We also discussed our Xero Small Business Insights (XSBI) special report Crunch: Cash flow challenges facing small businesses. This report examines the cash flow challenges facing small businesses in Australia, New Zealand and the UK, with data drawn from more than 200,000 businesses. Among other insights, the report found that 9 in 10 small businesses experience at least a month of negative cash flow each year – or a ‘cash flow crunch’.
You can read more about the report including the insights and recommendations within it in the blog post – Crunch: Delving deeper into the cash flow challenges affecting small businesses.
Making Tax Digital for Income Tax Self-Assessment
Alex and I also discussed the new Making Tax Digital for Income Tax Self-Assessment (MTD for ITSA) legislation being introduced, which will impact approximately 4.2 million small businesses across the UK. This legislation impacts not only small businesses but accountants who service these communities – ultimately changing the role of accountants from being financial advisors to their clients to also offering business counsel for those going through digital transformation.
As we lead up the 2024 launch of MTD for ITSA, we’ll be working with our communities to ensure they have everything they need to prepare for this change, to help clients along this journey and to ensure a smoother tax process.
The customer of the future and a sit down with Alasdair McGill
In my second keynote session, earlier today, I discussed the small business client of the future, and how Xero can help accountants and bookkeepers to set up their practice to meet their ever-changing needs.
The small business client of the future will work in a much more digitally-enabled environment, navigating more changes to legislation and government compliance than ever before. We need to be ready and able to meet them where they are.
It was a real pleasure to meet with Alasdair McGill, co-founder of Ashton McGill, a firm that is at the forefront of this new approach to serving the customer of the future. Alasdair and I talked on stage about how we can better meet the needs of our customers working in a more digital world, leveraging non-traditional business tools to better support our customers.
It was also wonderful to reconnect with Ollie Beale who I interviewed on stage back in November 2019. At the time, Ollie was only 13 and the youngest Xero certified advisor. We had Ollie back on stage today to discuss what he has been up to over the last few years and heard how he continues to educate himself on Xero products and is still helping his parents Kim and Rich Beale at Bookkeeping4U.
Xerocon moves on to New Orleans
London, it’s been an absolute pleasure and I can’t wait to be back. For now though, I’m looking forward to meeting and sharing some exciting updates with our North American accounting and bookkeeping partners at Xerocon New Orleans next month. If you’re an accountant or bookkeeper based in the United States or Canada, join us! Tickets are still available for purchase.