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App Radar: New tech and next steps

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Elliot Spirrett

Sep 29, 2020

I hope you’ve been enjoying all that Xero On Air has to offer throughout September. If you haven’t had the chance to check it out yet, make sure you take the time to do so. For those reading this after-the-fact, think of it as a handy summary of all of the exciting app updates on the agenda.

Each year, Xero events offer a brilliant opportunity for attendees to meet with app partners, learn what those apps do, and discover the latest updates from the innovative Xero ecosystem. Many of you walk away with a plan to implement a hot new piece of technology for your own business, or having unearthed an app that will improve a client’s business. 

This year, things may look different, but that doesn’t mean you can’t deep dive into the world of apps. As a written companion to the Apps that should be on your radar (part 1 & part 2) episode, you can treat this article as your lecture notes, complete with an overview of all that we covered, and a link to some helpful resources. 

Before we get started, it’s important to remember that each business’ circumstances are different. The apps presented here are powerful solutions, but might not be the right fit for you, so always do your due diligence before making a decision (all apps featured are from our ‘Staff picks’ on Xero’s App Marketplace). 

What’s more, if you’re in need of some help making the right choice, consider reaching out to our Cloud Integrators who are specialists in app consultation and implementation. 

Once you have made your choice, make sure you commit 100%. This means ensuring that you and your team are trained to use the app to its full potential, all so you can get the most out of the product and harness the power of the technology.

Apps for your practice

If you’re still handling a lot of manual paperwork in your practice when it comes to client contracts, or you’re in the process of making the move away from time-based billing into the realm of fixed fee engagement, Practice Ignition is poised to help. 

A tool designed especially to help create proposal letters, contracts, and automate the payment process, Practice Ignition streamlines the client experience upon engagement, for both parties. 

Our second featured app, Xbert, is a game changer for anyone who is currently spending far too long checking for errors and inconsistent or incomplete data. 

Using AI audits, and by automating processes, Xbert helps to streamline workflows for your business. In doing so, it checks through all of your Xero data, attachments, and any emails forwarded into the app, ensuring your data integrity and reducing the time you spend correcting issues.

Apps for your clients and small business

Anyone who’s been in lockdown this year will probably have entertained themselves with a little online shopping at some point (it’s my personal therapy… please don’t judge me). For new ecommerce businesses, or those who’ve pivoted over to the world of Shopify or Amazon, A2X is an invaluable tool.

A2X helps make accounting within these platforms simpler by breaking down all of your sales, fees, and payments, and allocating them to the appropriate periods and accounts. All of which ensures that reconciling in Xero is easy, even if you’re using Amazon Pay or Shopify POS. 

For manufacturing or inventory-heavy businesses, the need for accurate data on both stock and workflows is paramount. The insight that apps like DEAR Inventory offer brings new opportunities for efficiency, by streamlining processes and reducing the chance for human error. 

Whether it’s contract production, bespoke individual task management, or fully fledged enterprise manufacturing (be it B2B, online, or consumer facing), DEAR helps inventory-based businesses make better decisions. 

Finally if you’re a tradie, or if you’ve got tradies on your books, and you’re looking to bring some tighter organisation to managing schedules or jobs, then ServiceM8 is a great opportunity. 

Allowing users to manage work, invoice, communications, and receive payments on the go, ServiceM8 is the ultimate tool for anyone in trades or services. Full GPS tracking means clients know exactly when staff will arrive at a job, and the easily laid out digital job card means it’s easy to prep, complete, and invoice for work done.

We’ve had a great time making Xero On Air this year, and we hope that you’ve enjoyed taking part. If you’re keen to take a closer look for yourself or your clients, our app playbooks are a great place to get started.

With all that has happened this year, there has truly never been a better time to look to digital transformation. Maybe the perfect app for you or your clients is even right here in this article.

The apps featured in this article and in Xero On Air are our suggestions only. As always, we encourage you to do your due diligence before making any decisions.

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