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The beautiful alternative to sub-accounts

At Xero we’re always challenging the status quo and thinking about the best way of doing small business accounting from a design perspective. This can occasionally leave those of us who have used other accounting software packages trying to do things “the way we’ve always done it”. Case in point – sub-accounts.

If you’re used to carefully setting up your accounts in a way which clusters similar activities together by account code, or are used to relying on sub-accounts to sort your data for reporting, the simplicity of Xero’s chart of accounts may appear daunting

Xero’s philosophy of being “beautiful” really shines here. Instead of having a bloated and clunky chart full of sub-accounts, Xero has two functions available to all users – report grouping, and tracking.

The video we’ve created takes you through just how simple it really is to get comprehensive reports without sub-accounts.

Report grouping lets you create fully customised reports – from high level overviews through to highly detailed reports. This gives you full control on how information is reported. Tracking categories can separate your financial data out even further – without having to create numerous new accounts.



Read more about Accountants, Accounting software



3 December 2013 #

I love the simplicity of Xero’s customised report layouts – I think it’s pretty much best in class. I would prefer if more of the reports were customisable (rather than just P&L and Balance Sheet) and if there were more sorting options (alphabetical isn’t always best), but overall I think they’ve done a great job balancing simplicity and functionality.

3 December 2013 #

Agree with Chris other reports need ability to customize as does budget manager need layout options available.

4 December 2013 #

I’ve heard rumblings about a major rewrite of reporting, is this true?

Andrew Tokeley
4 December 2013 #

@Taylor – yes, we are doing a lot of work on reporting at the moment. The main concepts will remain the same but we’re adding more options to control filtering, sorting, selectable columns…

@Ed – Budget Manager is a “special” report and so won’t inherit this redesign.

Derek Draper
7 December 2013 #

Looking forward to a more robust reporting solution for US partners!

Jay Kimelman
9 December 2013 #

We have been using the report groupings to meet our clients reporting requirements. Can wait for the reporting enhancements to be released, excited to see the tag feature!

9 December 2013 #

Unfortunately this grouping does not apply to a financial reporting?

9 December 2013 #

Can’t wait for the unlimited Tracking Categories update :)

23 September 2014 #

Can group tracking be used on the Balance Sheet? I’d like to perform fund accounting to track grants and other restricted funds.

24 September 2014 #

I use the tracking category to track grants in the P&L and then journalise the balance sheet values at the end of each month. This means when I print a P&L (cash basis) for one or all grants it gives me the unspent fund value for each grant. The balance sheet journal doesn’t affect this value.

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