Rescue me

Had a good catch up today with Xero partner Melanie Morris from Bookkeeping and Beyond.

Melanie noticed that accountants often have a clean up job to get their clients financial transaction to a state where they can prepare final accounts. It’s time consuming and therefore expensive for accountants to clean up books that are a mess.

Using Xero’s fast coding features Melanie has come up with an approach and service for ‘rescuing’ a bad set of books.

For small businesses with poor records, lots of errors in their legacy system, or  even a crazy chart of accounts you can be rescued by quickly reprocessing your transactions. Simply gather up electronic copies of the last years bank statements, load them into Xero and quickly reprocess the years transactions using Xero’s fast coding features.

Many banks allow online statements to be downloaded for up to several years back. If your bank does that then the process is easy. Unfortunately some banks only allow a few months of transactions to be pulled. In the worst case scenario you can quickly key the old paper bank statements manually into Excel (which starts to memorize data entered above in the column – so is fairly quick), then use the Xero CSV import to load the transactions, then fast code.

[As an aside – it would be great to find a scanning package that could read paper bank statements into a file format. Anyone know of one?]

Knowing how quickly you can be rescued with Xero’s fast coding, a suggestion that we have for accountants is to recommend your small business customers check how far back their bank provides statements for, and get them in the  habit of exporting their bank statement files into a common place so that they can be reprocessed later if required. A reprocessing insurance policy!

If (in the unlikely case) your Xero accounts are a mess – the bank data that has been imported through our daily automated bank feeds can also be exported allowing the business to start again, quickly recode, and be rescued.

Its great to hear of our partners thinking of new ways to use Xero and creating valuable new services. Way to go Melanie!


Michael Mori
February 2, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Hi Melanie, I have just completed work for a property letting company (500 tenants) who were 18 months behind in their work (8 VAT quarters behind), which was half done on Excel spreadsheets. Fortunately I could import their bank statements from the begining of their previous financial year and then by using the cash coding just as you explained, I managed to process 14,319 bank entries in 6½ hours. Surely there is no other system in the world that allows you to do that!

April 4, 2010 at 8:42 am

Hi Michael. So glad the process worked for you. Agree – Xero rocks !!

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