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The platform that powers small business

Posted 3 weeks ago in Advisors by Nick Houldsworth

At Xerocon Brisbane I was delighted to share how the Xero platform is evolving. From our product roadmap to new key partnerships with global finance and technology institutions, I had the pleasure of announcing new enhancements to the app marketplace.

Building the best platform ecosystem in SaaS

Ten years ago I started my journey with Xero as a small business owner. When I first saw the dashboard, I felt a huge weight lift. In seeing my bank account and data flowing automatically, I knew the cloud was about to make my life easier. But it was when I discovered the (then) emerging app marketplace and the tools which would automate my workflow when I knew my future was in the API world. 

The idea of two cloud-based platforms seamlessly connecting over the internet through an API has been the revolution fueling technology transformation over the last decade. Today we’re making things more simple, seamless and smarter by connecting accountants and bookkeepers with more innovation partners, financial institutions and applications around the world. Here are a few ways we’re doing that. 

Bank feeds API

Our bank feeds team work with over 200 financial institutions to bring beautiful experiences around automating bank data into Xero. 

Xero has been leading the charge across the industry with bank feeds for over a decade, but we’re also investing in the future to leverage some exciting new trends. We’ve now got 12 banks and fintechs connected and many more in the pipeline, enabling workflow innovation with a whole new range of cloud first financial services providers. 

We’re starting to see a wave of positive regulation like open banking, which will make it even easier for customers to access their data through APIs. We’re already live in the UK, and will be ready when this comes to Australia, New Zealand, and anywhere else in the world.

New partnerships

We’re an open platform, meaning we enable others to innovate for you. Because we’re global, we tap into innovation from anywhere in the world. For example, if a problem is being solved in Australia, we can export that to the United States. If a trend is emerging in Europe, we can bring that to New Zealand. 

Our latest partnership with OCBC (the largest SME bank in Singapore) is already having a positive impact on our joint customers’ experience, improving cash flow and business performance.

I’m thrilled to announce a new feed with Waddle for our Australian customers. Waddle is an industry-leading lending fintech based in Australia with small business customers globally. With a beautiful, fully digital experience, businesses can get funding quickly – as in 48-hours quickly.

We’re also investing in partnering with some of the most popular workflow solutions you already love too, like Trello and Mailchimp. We’re working towards how we can lead the emergence of back office to front office tools, bringing new levels of integrations.

Sign-in with Xero: simple, seamless, smarter

With over 800 certified apps connected to Xero, we continue to attract a new product to our platform every two days. And as we continue to build more connections that add value to our platform, we also focus on ensuring quality, security and a beautiful customer experience. 

We certify and review every app in our marketplace. We’ve been working with the ATO to develop common security standards for third party developers. And we want to help our partners meet those standards. We will continue to deliver a seamless experience to our customers, which is why this month we publicly launched “Sign in with Xero”.

You may have seen this available with other platforms like Google, and soon, Apple. Sign in with Xero means our partners can leverage our investment in security and reliability, like two factor authentication. It offers a more beautiful experience, and one less password you have to remember.

Seven of our leading partners have already built this into their integration, and you can find more about Sign in with Xero here.

Advisor-powered recommendations

Our ecosystem helps you draw on data, improve workflows and surface insights small business owners need. 

In July we relaunched a reimagined app marketplace experience at apps.xero.com. In the coming weeks accountants can use Xero insights to offer smart recommendations to their clients. Imagine curating a list of solutions for small businesses – a platform where accountants play a more active role for clients thanks to the cloud.

We launched our advisor courses in Xero U last year, available from Xero Central. Over 1,300 badges have been completed – that’s an increase of over 70% in connections for completed advisors.

Partnering means just that

Navigating the cloud can be tricky. But our community is designed to support our partners. At Xero we’re committed to investing in our platform. Building new capabilities, connections and workflows, so we continue to innovate for whatever the world of small business looks like tomorrow. 

The biggest investment Xero is making is in our partners. We’re creating more ways for accountants, bookkeepers and advisors to seamlessly manage their clients through our new features. We’re giving partners more opportunities to grow their clients. We’ve created a platform which truly powers small businesses.

Over a million small businesses, and their advisors are looking for the best cloud apps that integrate with Xero. Partner with us and we’ll make sure they find yours.

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