Looking back over the past year since our last Xerocon update post, so much has happened across the front and backend of AccountKit. Some of it planned, some not so much -- but all to improve our offering for customers through new tools, increased functionality and improved performance. We’ve participated in a lot of events between the ongoing Xero refresh series, Accounting Business Expo and more recently The Outsourced Accountant’s Ignite 2018 roadshow. We were also tremendously honoured to be named Industry Specific App Partner of the Year for Asia Pacific with Xero -- it makes all our hard work and the sacrifices we’ve made for our own business and family worthwhile.
Now, onto the meaty stuff of what we’ve been up to! While there has been a myriad of small refinements the past few months, along with some major changes to the AWS infrastructure extracting and serving up the Xero data, we have kicked some big goals too by way of the below additions. Stay tuned for their upcoming release.
Fuel Tax Credit Calculator
Ever wondered how you could streamline this part of your BAS process? We’ve taken a mundane clunky affair on the ATO website and turned it into something intuitive and easy. Soon, you’ll be able to extract fuel information from Xero to automatically calculate fuel tax credits by defining the fuel tax settings on a per-account basis whilst extracting litreage from the details to apply against the appropriate rate for the applicable period.
Whilst presently in closed beta, we expect this to be released any moment now.
Simplified Equipment Finance
I love the ease with which we can now trigger bulk posting of interest journals from within each schedule, not to mention the fact that you can click on an out-of-balance schedule for a view of the surrounding transactions to pinpoint the issue and then soon you will be able to click straight through to the offending transaction in Xero .
BUT, the killer feature we’re about to release is the long-awaited “One off events”. Picture the ability to trigger an event such as an early payout or a refinancing of a finance agreement from anywhere within the schedule and having AccountKit post/void entries as required to that date, before posting the closing entries and marking the schedule as complete.
Updates to the schedule and actions.
Early Payout option in action
Preview of the journal before posting the journal into Xero
It’s been a long time coming, but we’ve finally engaged with the BGL crew to build out an ASIC dashboard and client information dashboard as our starting point for future exciting developments. In this initial release over the coming month, you can monitor upcoming reviews and company debt, including the ability to click through and view BGL information across CAS360 and SimpleFund360. There is also some simple dashboarding of client information within the client group and client pages for ease of comparison with your core client information.
Similarly, we’ve deepened the integration with NowInfinity to enable direct click-through and similar dashboarding of client information on the Client Group and Client detail pages.
We’re also beta testing an integration with Slack and Yammer to streamline internal communication by enabling messages, calls and the like to be sent and shared from the correspondence register. Users can then click straight back into AccountKit’s correspondence register the client information all pre-populated.
How the message looks within Slack
Lastly, we’ve built out the ability to set up a Twilio subscription within AccountKit and purchase a mobile number to send and receive SMS via Twilio. This is also due to go into closed beta testing shortly, and should be released in the next month or so.
The Road Ahead
Inevitably, the development process throws up all sorts of challenges, and great ideas often come from Xero or one of our customers, which we simply can’t ignore.
Having said that, our current focus for the next six months is deepening our integrations with BGL, NowInfinity and building our initial integration with Nimbus Portals, plus releasing a few options on how to include emails within our client correspondence register (in progress). We will also be looking at evolving the pricing model to better handle individual heavy practices coupled with larger practices with higher volumes of Xero connections – I’m sure this won’t be the last time either as the toolset matures and deepens.