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Is Xero really the easiest accounting software to use?

Xero was a market leader, but what do accountants think of it now?

xero cloud accounting software works on tablets phones and desktop computersWhen Xero was launched a few years ago, one of its selling points was that, compared with other accounting software – in particular, MYOB – Xero was incredibly easy to use, and it was also cloud-based, which meant you could access your accounts from any computer, any device, anywhere, anytime. This helped Xero to get a major foothold in the marketplace here in Australia, where MYOB had always reigned supreme.

But it wasn’t long before we started getting requests from bookkeepers and accountants for a Xero training course, in addition to our already existing MYOB training courses. It turned out that, as more businesses (tradies, for example) started using Xero because of its cloud functionality, their bookkeepers and accountants were finding that they needed training in some of Xero’s features and functions, despite Xero being billed as the easy alternative to MYOB.

Perhaps Xero isn’t that intuitive to use without a training course?

Since introducing our Xero training course, we’ve also noticed a significant upswing in enrolments, especially from bookkeepers, with many noting that the bank reconciliations and adjustments features in Xero are difficult to navigate. This got us wondering as to whether Xero really is that easy to use compared with MYOB, or whether it there might be an easier alternative out there, especially for small businesses managing all of their own accounts.

QuickBooks wants to be the small biz accounting software of choice

Since QuickBooks re-emerged in Australia, with full backing from their US-based parent company, Intuit, they’ve been cornering the small business market, with their inexpensive pricing plans and now by announcing a partnership deal with PayPal (paypal want you to be paid quicker) that enables a two-way flow of data between both QuickBooks and PayPal.

The QuickBooks-PayPal deal follows a similar union between Saasu and Westpac, which promises Saasu and Westpac customers with direct bank feeds to provide business owners with real-time insights into their cashflow. As one of the Big Four banks – and, quite often, the preferred bank for most Australian businesses – the union is hoped to give Saasu a leg up into the increasingly competitive cloud-accounting market, which saw the shuttering of the Australian-owned Reach Accounting earlier this year.

QuickBooks is well-placed to topple Xero

At more than half the price of Xero’s ‘standard’ plan (the starter plan at $25 per month is the most limited ‘starter’ plan I’ve seen), QuickBooks’s starter plan is already appealing to the money conscious small business owner; the PayPal deal only strengthens that.

Ever since PayPal spun off from eBay earlier this year, it’s been announcing new services that specifically target small business owners primarily doing business online – first by introducing inexpensive invoicing, card readers, and now by integrating with QuickBooks. As PayPal is the only online payment service operating in Australia, the two companies are now exceptionally placed to take the Australian small business market.

Perhaps losing the small business market isn’t a primary concern for Xero, which seems to be aligning itself to take the MYOB medium-sized business market, anyway. Regardless, QuickBooks is definitely a force to be reckoned with (forgive the pun) in the Australian cloud accounting space.

Join the wait list for our Quickbooks Online training course

We’re in the process of developing a QuickBooks training course, so if you’d like to register your interest to receive alerts and announcements about its progression, you can do so at our website. Alternatively, if you’re looking for training courses in either Xero or MYOB, you can enrol in either course online today and do your course over the Christmas and holiday season when you might have some time to do one while you reflect on your goals for 2016.

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Free Xero Course with Excel and MYOB Courses

It’s a Good Year for Xero Cloud Accounting

Many accountants and businesses are now using Xero instead of MYOB so it's important for bookkeepers to be trained in this.
Many accountants and businesses are now using Xero instead of MYOB so it’s important for bookkeepers to be trained in this.

It’s been a surprising year this year for our Xero Training Courses. Xero must be doing something right with their marketing and strategy because we’ve seen a significant increase in the number of students enrolling for this course.

I was just speaking with one of our students only recently and she mentioned that of all the software programs she uses (and she uses them all) that Xero makes bookkeeping so easy that some of her clients who’ve gone onto it have reduced the number of hours that they employ her!

[quote]It’s a scary thought if you are an independent contractor who doesn’t have a professional services agreement in place for regular work with their clients, but it’s also a sign of the times for bookkeepers in the cloud (online) software era.[/quote]

The biggest reason for the ease of use? Bank Feeds. See below for our free Xero course offer..

Do Bookkeepers Need to Change What They Do?

Blog about Content Marketing and inbound marketingI recently wrote about content marketing and whether a bookkeeper is someone who can discuss or even recommend this service to the people they work for. The best way to think about this is how the bookkeeper role works in many companies, for example, do small businesses look for a bookkeeper who can provide a wider range of services than just bookkeeping? It’s common for a bookkeeper to work in the administration areas of a small business because finance and administration go hand in hand and it’s common for contractors who understand cloud based services to delve into and explore other cloud based services.

I was speaking to another bookkeeper who is a Registered BAS Agent about her website and online marketing and she was telling me about all these fantastic things she was doing to promote her own business.

[quote]After talking to her for an hour I started thinking that she is a good person to talk to about Internet marketing – and that perhaps she starts offering these services to her clients too![/quote]

In the end it often depends on the size of a bookkeepers clients and the type of work they want to do. When you develop your bookkeeping and accounting skills you become more valuable as an accounts contact, particularly as a Registered BAS Agent, however you can become more of a small business administrator if you are aware of how to manage many different parts of the business.

It’s a Great Time for Free Xero Courses with MYOB Course enrolment

Sorry, I digress.

[box type=”tick” size=”large” style=”rounded” border=”full”]What I really wanted to announce was our new fantastic special offer of a free Xero course or Microsoft Word course when you enrol into a Microsoft Excel or MYOB Training Course with EzyLearn.[/box]

Xero is great to know if you want to delve deeper into the various software programs available to do bookkeeping (and a great tool to offer if you want to operate a bookkeeping business from home). Microsoft Word is a great program to master if you want to create documents for yourself or the business you work for and the tool of choice for creating a great resume so you can get that next job you’re going for.

 

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Financial Settings in Xero (FREE Training Video)

In our quest to always present you with the latest information about bookkeeping for your own business or someone else’s, we are pleased to present you with another free training video from our recently added Xero online training courseLast time we showed you how to enter a credit note in Xero, but this time we’re going to show you how to enter a business’ financial settings — something every bookkeeper needs to set up for their clients.

Knowing how to set up a business’ financial settings is important as every business will need to enter their financial information (such as the GST collection method, frequency of GST calculation, PAYG withheld, and so forth). As a bookkeeper, all of this is probably familiar to you, given that MYOB, too, requires this information in order to produce accurate reports. That being said, there are some differences between how you enter this information into MYOB and Xero, and in this training video we break it down for you:

 

 

Xero is currently one of the most straightforward, yet powerful pieces of accounting software and fast becoming a major rival to MYOB for its simplicity of use. Check out our new Xero training course. We also provide an online training course in cloud-based accounting program, Reach as well as our flagship MYOB training course.

 

 

 

 

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Entering Credit Notes in Xero (FREE Training Video)

At EzyLearn we are constantly refreshing the content of all our courses, such as our MYOB training course and our Xero training course — which we have recently added to our suite of online training products. Xero is the cloud-accounting software that is fast becoming one of MYOB’s key competitors. So that you can benefit from all the new information that is always emerging about being a bookkeeper and running your own bookkeeping business (or doing the books for someone else’s business) we want to share with you the following video about how to enter a credit note in Xero:

 

 

Where Xero Differs from MYOB

If you’re familiar with MYOB, then you know that when you enter or approve a transaction in MYOB, you can still delete it from the system at a later stage — in the event you need to give a customer a refund, for instance.

In Xero, however, you can’t delete a transaction once it’s been approved. In one sense, this is great for auditing purposes as you can see everything that’s occurred in the account over the past month or quarter or year. But it also means putting through credit notes, which in MYOB is notoriously hard.

The fact that pretty much everything in Xero is easier to do than in MYOB, including entering a credit note, is one key reason why Xero is fast becoming one of MYOB’s biggest rivals. Again, we invite you to check out our new Xero training course. EzyLearn also offers courses in other cloud-based accounting programs, such as Reach.

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Want to take a peek at XERO, part owned by MYOB founder?

xero online accounting for remote bookkeepers dashboardI recently wrote about my discoveries of the preferred accounting software for local startup businesses in Sydney and wanted to share something that our resident BAS agent, certified bookkeeper and MYOB trainer has created for you. A training video about how to enter a payment for an invoice you create using Xero online accounting software.

If you are looking at starting your own bookkeeping business it is useful to learn more than just MYOB accounting software to widen your potential client base. It is also good to learn about an online accounting program that is growing very fast in user adoption, such as Xero. Why is Xero growing so fast? There are several reasons, but one simple reason is that you can access your accounting file from anywhere.

As you can see in the free Xero training video at the bottom of this blog, using online accounting software is just like using many other online services, you login and click, type, tab etc. One of the other great features that we have discovered from speaking with accountants and some IT professionals is that your accountant or your bookkeeper can use your accounting system at the same time as you do, without having to worry about sending a data file and wondering who has the most recent version of that data file.

One of the new great features of doing your MYOB training courses with EzyLearn is that you have 12 months free access to the Bookkeeping Academy, through which we will be releasing hundreds of bookkeeping training videos to help budding bookkeepers learn a wider range of software as well as develop new skills to help them find work or build their own business.

Feel free to let us know if you are a XERO user and share your experiences at our facebook page.