One of the biggest time drainers for us busy entrepreneurs is manual and duplicate data entry. Aren't you glad that Xero has developed a platform that helps us save time and money by allowing other software programs to communicate and share information with it? We have found that business owners spend a lot of time entering client information into multiple systems, keeping up with outstanding balances, and organizing and storing documents.
To help take back hours of your time per week, consider adding these three add-ons as part of your company's automated workflow process strategy.
1. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System
Enter your basic client information such as name, email, and contact information in your CRM and have the client data automatically create a contact in Xero by integrating the two systems. Most CRM integrations will also allow you to view your client balances and invoices from the client dashboard. Let's say a client has scheduled a consultation meeting with you. When you go to review the client notes in your CRM you see that the client has an outstanding balance. This is your opportunity to speak with your client about remitting payment before additional services are provided. With some of the integrations you can click to add a new invoice within your CRM and it will automatically open up a new invoice screen for you in Xero.
2. Online Invoicing
Using Xero you can send client invoices by email. You will want to have set up a merchant processing account with Stripe, PayPal, Authorize.net, Bill.com or another processor of your choice. Once the invoice has been delivered to the client's inbox he can click on the link to pay the invoice right from the email using an electronic form of payment. This reduces the amount of time it takes for the client to receive the invoice and remit payment. With this method, the client receives the invoice immediately and can remit payment upon receipts.
If you are using a subscription model, set up a recurring invoice and payment system so that your client is automatically billed on a specified day of the month and the payment is automatically charged to the client's payment source that you have on file. You will need to have permission from your client to automatically charge their account. This eliminates the delay in payment and provides you with the ability to more accurately project your business's cash flow.
3. Document Management
Still searching for paper files, buying folders, and purchasing additional file cabinets? Get with the times of digital file storage. There are several programs to choose from. Popular online storage platforms are Box and Dropbox. Additional platforms such as Expensify, Hubdocs, Receipt Bank and SmartVault allow you to upload documents and attach the document directly to a transaction in Xero. This helps you audit-proof your business. If you are ever questioned about a particular business expense you will have the receipt attached directly to the transaction in Xero for easy access and verification.
Online storage also provides you with the ability to access documents at the click of a button. By developing a storage system, you and your team can easily share documents with each other and with clients. Depending on which document management solution you choose, your clients may also be able to upload documents to you and they will be automatically stored in the clients file.
Need help determining which solutions are best for your business? Let us help you narrow the search. Click here to learn more.