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Introducing Xero Projects – manage job time, costs and profitability

Posted 2 months ago in Xero news by Ben Watts
Posted by Ben Watts

Whether you’re a small business, or an accountant working with one, it’s important to know which jobs deliver the best return on investment, and which ones need to be reined in. Cue projects in Xero: a simple way to capture, track and report on the time and money spent on each job so you can proactively invoice, make informed decisions and manage your business more efficiently.

Projects is a great fit for small businesses, agencies or consultants in digital, creative and IT industries. Now you can enjoy visibility across all your jobs – which makes it easier to plan ahead, stick to budget and focus on the right work.

Ultimately, projects helps drive business efficiency and profitability.

Today, projects has been designed with small service industries in mind – so if you have simple job costing and tracking needs, then projects is for you. If your job tracking needs are more complex, watch this space because we’re working on even more awesome functionality. Soon, everyone from architects, engineers and tradies, larger accounting and legal firms and more can make use of this helpful tool.

If projects sounds right for you, or you’re keen to share the delight with your clients, get the scoop below:

What is it?

Projects in Xero is a simple time and cost tracking tool that:

  • Focuses on the financial side of project management.
  • Integrates with key Xero features, including contacts, invoicing, and bills and bank reconciliation.
  • Provides flexible, easy project invoicing.
  • Supports fixed price and time billing.
  • Monitors project budgets and financials.

Take a peek

Xero Projects

Want in?

Xero Partners

Projects is a great tool for small accounting and bookkeeping businesses, and it’s open to all Xero Partners at no charge. You can explore projects for your own practice using the Xero Practice Organisation – and be sure to invite your clients to try it, too.

Simply pop into the explorer feature in Xero HQ to find clients most suited to projects. Then flick them an invite directly from the projects tab in their Xero organisation. Or if you’re the subscriber, you can enable projects for them right then and there. Not only is this a fantastic way to improve their business, you’ll soon earn partner points for clients using projects where you hold the subscription.

We’re progressively making projects available to all practices and their clients, if it is not available when you access the projects tab please check back soon.

Small businesses

If you’re a small business with simple costing needs, projects is likely the perfect solution for you. Simply reach out to your Xero bookkeeper or accountant and let them know you’re keen to get on board. They’ll be able to help you decide if it’s a good fit,  then activate projects and you’re good to go.

If you’re not linked up with a Xero partner, find one that’s right for you on the advisor directory. Otherwise, you can register your interest and we’ll be in touch once it’s available.


For businesses working with a Xero accountant or bookkeeper, you can experience everything projects has to offer at no extra charge for the rest of 2017. Once the introductory period ends, a monthly user subscription fee will apply. Learn more on the projects feature page.

And if you’re one of our awesome accountant or bookkeeper partners, projects is free as part of the Xero Partner Program in your practice organisation.

What’s coming?

We’re building deeper reporting and insights so you can really break down your costs and where your team’s time is being spent. We’re also working on a bunch of other goodness below:

  • Project user permissions
  • Timesheet insights and reporting
  • Project templates
  • Integration with Xero Quotes
  • Integration with Xero Expenses
  • Xero Payroll integration
  • iOS and Android apps

We can’t wait to see you and your business reap the benefits of this fantastic tool, so seize your chance to experience projects at no extra cost and give it a whirl today.

If you’re after a little extra info, pop over to our Help centre.


Dave Jackson
September 13, 2017 at 5.10 pm

This looks like a great option, can you provide some detail on the cross over with Xero owned Workflow Max, or will this replace it?

Ben Watts in reply to Dave Jackson
September 14, 2017 at 4.28 pm

Hi Dave,

Workflowmax is still a big part of our job management strategy. Essentially we see them servicing different parts of the market.

Projects is best suited to small businesses and solo operators within professional service industries with simple job management needs such as design agencies and IT professionals. WorkflowMax is a full featured complete job management system. It has much richer customisation than Projects and is therefore better suited to those SMB’s running more complex businesses with large numbers of customers and staff.
Hope that helps

Tara in reply to Ben Watts
October 9, 2017 at 6.19 pm

However, Xero is much easier to use, and the invoices are much prettier and easier to customise, Workflowmax won’t let you have more than one invoice template – we have two locations and require a Vic and NSW template.
WFM won’t let you enter an ABN, it’s search function is absolutely terrible, and it won’t let you send expenses to your accounting software. The client data is pitiful – there’s no way to select multiple addresses for one client, there’s no way to set a specific accounts person for invoicing purposes.
WFM won’t let you give invoices a unique name or number.

September 13, 2017 at 5.27 pm

As a Xero user this is beyond offensive and literally makes me despise Xero. So because we buy direct from Xero, we can’t get this functionality we desperately need. But if we purchase through an accountant, we can get it, if they consider us worthy. If I were to end this the way I’d like to, it would involve profanities.

Ben Watts in reply to Josh
September 14, 2017 at 4.27 pm

Hey Josh,

For this initial release projects is available to clients of all Xero advisors. This means if your accountant or bookkeeper is a Xero partner, simply contact them to have the feature activated. Alternatively you can complete the form at and we can activate on your behalf. Towards the end of this year we will be making projects available directly to all organisations. Hope that helps.

September 15, 2017 at 11.19 pm

This enhancement will be a great addition for some of my clients, however I think Xero you need to keep an eye on your pricing, you are quickly becoming one of the more expensive in the market and hard to justify the cost.
$10 per person per company? Why not charge $10 total, to stop companies having multiple users just regestering one account and sharing it.

Ben Watts in reply to David
September 18, 2017 at 1.19 pm

Great to hear you’ve got lots of clients projects will suit. We know it’ll be super useful for a range of small business and it should also help you work with your clients to see where they can trim their costs and focus their time.

An introductory launch price (from January 2018) of NZ$7/per user per month will apply as we build out the product rising to the $10 price point thereafter. We have extensively researched the market and are confident this pricing offers huge value for our customers as we roll out more projects features and functionality into 2018 – keep an eye out for our product release updates to see how this is tracking.

Victoria in reply to Ben Watts
September 24, 2017 at 10.25 am

The features and idea are really great, but I really hope it’s not going to be $10/per user/month as it’s going to be too much of an additional cost comparing to other work management app or even with just using excel. You’re asking the business owners to pay at least an extra $120 per year on top of what they are already paying for the monthly subscription, and that’s only for one single user; I don’t think business with multiple users needing access would like that…

September 19, 2017 at 2.12 pm

I have had a look but it probably has a way to go to replace WFM for us and we are a small accounting firm. We have all our clients set up with a monthly recurring job template that adds in their various software costs. Xero projects looks like it is more suited to low job volume (under 10 or so per month), otherwise it will take hours each month setting everyone up

George Andrianakos
October 11, 2017 at 12.48 pm

Hi all

Just wondering which subscriptions Xero Projects is available for. I am an accountant and currently I have noticed that Xero projects is available for some clients but not all.

Any thoughts?

Ben Watts in reply to George Andrianakos
October 11, 2017 at 1.55 pm

Hi George,

Xero Projects is only available to Partners until full public release at the end of this year. Partners however can give access to their clients. This means if you have practice access to your client’s Xero organisation, you’ll be able to see the Projects tab in their org. If you are the subscriber, you can enable Projects for them right there and then. If you are not the subscriber, you can invite the subscriber to try Projects. This will send them an email and will make the Projects tab visible to the subscriber next time they log in.

Remember for a user who is not the subscriber to see the Projects tab, they will need to have the Projects user permission set for them.

Hope that helps

October 14, 2017 at 10.25 pm

I use xero now but FreeAgent has had this ability built in for ages within the standard price which is much lower than xero.

While I completely welcome this addition as it looks great , I think it’s long overdue and I don’t think it should be an extra cost when it’s only really adding something that other packages have done for awhile for much less!

Phil Hawkins
October 18, 2017 at 12.08 pm

Hi Ben

Is there a limit to the number of projects that can be created? Also, for customers with multiple projects, is there functionality to report on both the individual project and the total projects for a particular customer (eg. a customer may have 5 sites and we want to see the project P&L for the individual site/s and consolidated view? thanks.

Ben Watts in reply to Phil Hawkins
October 19, 2017 at 12.02 pm

Hi Phil,

No there is no limit on the number of projects that can be created. Within the current Project Summary report you can see a summary of your projects, either in progress, or all projects grouped by customer. This can give you an overall view of what is going on across all the projects for that customer. You can find out more about Projects reports here: Hope that helps.

November 19, 2017 at 11.28 am

Totally second the comment re: FreeAgent has had this for years!
I only discovered today that my moving to Xero will mean that I cannot have time by project, this is ridiculous!
Thank you for bringing this feature so that you can now align with other similar SAAS.

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