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News & Events 4 min read

New features announced at Xerocon London

Diya Jolly

Jun 12, 2024

We’ve just kicked off day one of Xerocon London and I’m buzzing about all the new Xero products and features that we announced this morning! 

Our vision is to build the most insightful and trusted small business platform. And Xero is making a big investment in the UK as part of its business strategy. If you couldn’t make it to Xerocon, or just need a recap, here are a few of the key announcements about things that are now available or coming soon.

Coming soon: Just Ask Xero (JAX) 

Many of you have been eagerly watching to see how the rise of generative AI can help support productivity for you and your small business clients. And soon Just Ask Xero (JAX), our generative AI-powered smart business companion, will be here. It is available in beta in August and will help you and your clients run your business more efficiently. You’ll be able to ‘Just Ask Xero’ to complete tasks like generating an invoice or editing a quote, either in Xero or via other apps and devices that you regularly use day-to-day, such as mobile, WhatsApp and email. 

Additionally we shared some exciting new developments about the technology underpinning JAX that helps make it more accurate and secure. To find out more about how we’re building greater accuracy into JAX, check out my blog: How GenAI-powered Just Ask Xero will reimagine accounting. For tips and tricks on using AI, download our AI guides: there’s one for accountants and bookkeepers, and one for small businesses. 

Coming soon: Partnership tax

Digitising tax and accounts workflows is the key to optimising efficiency in your practice, so we were delighted to unveil the next addition to Xero Tax, our new partnership tax solution, at Xerocon. 

Partnership tax is available from July in beta. It will help you automatically prepare partnership annual accounts and tax using Xero data, and seamlessly file partnership tax returns with HMRC. You can now manage your compliance tasks, all in one place, eliminating the need to have multiple practice tools. 

Coming soon: Integrating Xero Practice Manager and tax

We announced the beta is now open for an integrated practice management and tax within Xero Practice Manager (XPM) to UK accountants and bookkeepers.

Integrating Xero Tax and Xero Practice Manager will provide visibility and management of client obligations, workflows and job tracking and prioritisation all in one place, helping you build greater efficiencies into your practice. It will make managing jobs across your practice much easier when you know how they line up to your clients’ tax obligations. 

Coming soon: Client insights 

We were excited to unveil the first look at the client insights’ snapshot which shows key client financial health metrics such as business health, profit and expenses across the practice. The feature is now live in beta in XPM and Xero HQ.

Client insights will provide accountants and bookkeepers with the data they need to best support their clients. These new financial insights help you confidently grow your advisory offering by highlighting clients who would benefit from timely conversations about emerging issues.

Coming soon: Tap to Pay on Android

According to Xero Small Business Insights, 50% of UK small businesses are paid late. The cost hit an estimated £1.6bn in 2023.1 Because it’s so important to help small businesses get paid faster, we’re adding more ways for customers to pay, with Tap to Pay coming soon.

Xero will be the first major accounting platform to offer Tap to Pay in the UK. Tap to Pay enables businesses to accept payments on the spot, right from the Xero Accounting app. The new contactless payment method for Xero invoicing, enabled through Stripe, gives small businesses more ways to accept the types of payments customers want.

Tap to Pay will first be offered to UK Android users in a beta program in August, and available on more platforms in the following months.

Coming soon: More ways to pay in Xero

And that’s not all. Here are some other ways we’re helping ensure getting paid is as seamless as possible: 

  • New payment methods with Stripe: In addition to credit cards, debit cards, and digital wallets, additional options will soon be available including bank transfer, and buy now, pay later options
  • Single, one-time sign up: A simpler, embedded sign-up with Stripe makes it easier to get moving and get paid
  • Complete control and customisation: Choose which payment methods you make available and easily enable or disable the payment methods you want to offer

New and coming soon: Xero Payroll enhancements

Efficient payroll management is crucial, but disconnected tools and platforms can make it difficult to get a complete, real-time view of your clients’ financial position. In fact, 86% of accountants and bookkeepers told us in a recent survey that having accounting and payroll all in one place saves them time.2 That’s why we’ve been doubling down on building out our UK payroll product with additional functionality. These updates will help you serve more types of small businesses, make crucial pay runs easier to administer, streamline multi-client tasks, and reduce manual payroll errors.

Payroll manager

We showcased the first look of payroll manager, a new dashboard in XPM and Xero HQ, that gives you an easy way to view payroll data across your practice’s clients in one place. Currently in beta, payroll manager will help save time by providing a consolidated view of your client pay runs, making it quicker and simpler to identify clients whose payroll needs attention for upcoming pay runs.

More payroll functionality

Xero Payroll in the UK also includes a number of improved features designed to suit a workforce that increasingly wants to work more flexibly. We’ve made it easy to manage employees’ working patterns to support non-traditional working hours, such as four-day working weeks. Set up of employee pensions has also been simplified with additional guidance and increased flexibility to edit and update fields.

Soon, you’ll also be able to align your payroll leave period to their financial or operational periods.

Additionally, we’ll make it easier for small businesses to switch to Xero Payroll anytime during the tax year, by simply uploading their most recent filing data and following a few simple steps.

Purposeful innovation aimed at providing you value 

As you can see, we’re really making strides on delivering on our product vision to build the most powerful accounting platform in the UK.

We believe this kind of thoughtful, purposeful innovation is what’s going to add the most value to you and your clients, now and in the future. Enjoy the rest of Xerocon.

  1. The cost of late payments to small businesses for 2023 has been estimated as the time value of the outstanding invoice value of all small and medium businesses. This calculation is based on businesses with fewer than than 50 employees for the United Kingdom. It’s calculated by applying current interest rates (for small- and medium-sized businesses) to aggregate small and medium business sales for the period equal to the average days late invoices are paid.
  2. Based on a survey commissioned by Xero in the UK in May 2024; Sample: Accountants and bookkeepers that use Xero Payroll, n=159

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