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Why we’ve updated the bank reconciliation design

Posted 2 months ago in Product by Emily Henlein
Posted by Emily Henlein

At Xero, we’re committed to making our products more inclusive for small businesses and advisors around the world. A key part of this process is upgrading the design of features like bank reconciliation, to make them more accessible and remove technical restraints, so we can deliver features in the future that will help your business or practice thrive.

Bank reconciliation is one of Xero’s most loved features and a critical part of your accounting work. So we know the changes we’ve made recently can take some getting used to. As we continue to test, learn and refine the experience, please know that we’re listening to your feedback – both positive and negative. In the meantime, here’s some context on why we’ve designed it this way.

Haven’t noticed a change to your bank reconciliation screen? This update is being rolled out in a phased approach to all subscribers over the next couple of months.

Prioritising human-centric design

Customers are at the centre of everything we do here at Xero. So the accessibility of the products in our global small business platform is really important. Here’s some further context on why the design changes we’ve made to bank reconciliation are so important.

Aligning to accessibility standards

We’re always looking at how we can make Xero more user friendly to people with disabilities. The changes to white space and font size may be a little different to what you’re used to, but it means vision-impaired people can use Xero comfortably. Our commitment to making Xero more inclusive is aligned with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.

A consistent look and feel

The new bank reconciliation design also brings it in line with other Xero features, like Single Touch Payroll in Australia and many others. Creating a consistent look and feel across our platform not only makes it a seamless experience for you, but also helps future customers learn how to use Xero.

Using Xero on any device

More and more, our customers are using a range of devices to log in to Xero. In addition, web usage globally is trending away from desktops. That’s why it’s important for our design to not only reflect the devices you use today, but those you may use in the future. Design elements like additional space on the screen make it easier for people to use Xero on their desktop, smartphone, tablet and more.

A new, condensed transaction view

One of the most common themes in your initial feedback on the new bank reconciliation experience, is the number of transactions you can see on your screen. Our product team is always working to test, learn and refine our products and takes your feedback seriously on how we can improve.

We’re scoping an optional, more condensed view, that will allow you to quickly scan transactions, giving you more flexibility in how you view your bank reconciliation screen. This is just one example of the way we’re continuing to update our products across Xero, based on your feedback and the evolving nature of design and technology standards.

A better experience for you into the future

One of the biggest challenges we face at Xero is that everyone has different needs and preferences when it comes to how they use features like bank reconciliation. Our goal is always to create a better experience for you in the long run, but we know this may mean getting used to changes that feel a little uncomfortable at first (while others will be right up your alley).

Our updates to bank reconciliation extend beyond the design you see on your screen – they leverage Xero’s powerful automation capabilities to help you save time, reduce data entry and increase accuracy. While the design changes may take some getting used to, it will ultimately mean a more seamless experience – especially when learning how to use a new feature or switching between tabs.

As always, your opinions are important to our continuous improvement. We’ll continue to take your feedback on board as we test, learn and refine the bank reconciliation experience now and in the future. So please do reach out if you need support or want to share your feedback – we’re always listening.


Stella carr
August 27, 2021 at 8.33 pm

If Windows can make accessibility features optional then surely you can rather than ruining the experience for those who do not need them.

Beeny Atherton in reply to Stella carr Xero
August 30, 2021 at 2.06 pm

Hi Stella – thanks for your comment, which I have shared with my team.

August 27, 2021 at 9.55 pm

You’ve got this one wrong guys. Are you listening yet?

Beeny Atherton in reply to Em Xero
August 30, 2021 at 2.06 pm

Hi Em, thanks for your comment. Yes, we are listening to all the feedback that we are receiving from our community about the bank reconciliation design and we will continue to listen as we test, learn and refine the experience. I have shared your comment with the Product team.

August 27, 2021 at 11.18 pm

Please please change it vack to how it was. Its seriously awful and has taken all the joy out of reconciling. Please!!!!!

Beeny Atherton in reply to Sally Xero
August 30, 2021 at 2.01 pm

Hi Sally, we’re so sorry to hear that. I have shared your feedback with the Product team.

August 31, 2021 at 1.42 pm

I can understand a UI change to make the experience consistent across all devices.

However, there should be some sort of browser detection scripting that detects if you are on mobile vs tablet vs laptop vs desktop, and displays the screen appropriately.

I would hesitate to say that 95% of your customer base uses Bank Reconciliation on a large screen desktop or laptop.

Font size is a major issue. White space/padding is a major issue.

I have discovered in CSS that the font size of reconcile items is set to 15px! This is way too big

CSS code

# ItemsToReconcile .statement.bank-transaction .details span, # ItemsToReconcile .statement.bank-transaction .details strong, # ItemsToReconcile .statement.bank-transaction .details a {

font-size: 15px;

If you reduced this to 11px or 12px, it would make a massive difference.

The max height of the reconcile line is set to 245px

# ItemsToReconcile .line:not(.opened) {

max-height: 245px;
margin: 0 0 36px;

If you reduced this to 160px, again this would make a huge difference to layout.

If I can find these problems in 5 minutes, surely your development team can fix them in 5 minutes.

In trying to make Xero more accessible to people with disabilites, you are failing the great majority of your customers. There should be an option in settings to turn on or off accessibility settings.

Beeny Atherton in reply to Danielle Xero
September 1, 2021 at 2.09 pm

Thank you Danielle – I have shared your comment with our Product Team.

felicity reid
September 1, 2021 at 11.07 am

Stop with the sales pitch Xero – we are not easily duped! (Sorry Em).
The new look is a disaster any which way you cut it. None of the reasons outlined above justifies the change! It just doesn’t work for us – the users. And – its UGLY. The thing I did love about xero was that it was easy on the eye and just so intuitive whilst being very sound. Not so anymore.

Beeny Atherton in reply to felicity reid Xero
September 1, 2021 at 2.09 pm

Hi Felicity, thanks for your comment and sharing your feedback with us. I have passed your thoughts on to my product team.

September 1, 2021 at 8.43 pm

Unfortunately, the details from this blog have made no attempt to address the issues with the new screens. There are detailed replies from numerous customers on the following forum post – https://central.xero.com/s/question/0D53m000079iwRC/the-new-format-is-terrible-change-it-back and you keep fobbing them off with sales waffle.

The correct thing for Xero to do at this stage would be to admit they’ve got it wrong, and revert it back to the previous system instead of coming up with excuses as to why the format has changed for accessibility reasons. It doesn’t hold up, and your customers can prove it!
If the company continues with this attitude, I suspect you’re likely to see existing users leaving, rather than recommending the product.

Carmen W
September 8, 2021 at 12.40 am

Hi James,

There are so many discussion all over Xero hub about this failure (please see the link below). What we (users & customers) would like is exactly what you have said: Xero admit their mistake and fix it ASAP.

Unfortunately we are getting the same generic answer and no resolving with the problem.

The questions for Xero are: Is there any positive feedback and when are you going to change it back?


September 7, 2021 at 12.24 pm

Exactly all of these comments above. Please Xero, just admit you have it wrong and fix it asap. Be the progressive and responsive company you claim to be and change it back. Many people will look at changing providers if you don’t respond to the feedback properly. Just out of curiosity, is there any feedback that indicates the new layout/view is working for them?

Mike Deam
September 9, 2021 at 6.05 pm

Totally wrong.

It’s awful to use. You are forcing me to look at alternative products which I will do at the next accounting expo when they are allowed to hold them again or I can travel. Pity I’ve been a Xero fan for 12 years you just wrecked it with 1 DOWNGRADE.

Want to know specifically, the font is too big, there is too much space between transactions, it’s not as clear when you get to finding transactions to reconcile against, I don’t get to see as many transactions in the same Realestate space. It requires more scrolling to get around so it’s slowing me down. it’s not efficient. it’s not effective. It’s is a complete disaster and I now hate using your product. This is just the list of the top of my head I could go on if you like.

Exactly which of my needs were you trying to fix?

You can put as much spin on this as you like but is now an unfriendly product to use. How did this pass a UA test?

September 9, 2021 at 8.24 pm

I have to agree, I really dislike the new reconciliation and don’t see any advantages to the change at all. It is visually very ugly and doesn’t function. I cant even see how to make adjustments in the reconciling process. It used to be at the bottom of the page and now it’s just missing. If I find that I now have to add a separate transaction, I won’t be happy. Please give us the option to revert back to the way it was.

Alan Chan
September 13, 2021 at 5.01 pm

Nothing is upgraded.

Bills already paid by cheque can only determined by the icon with double arrow sign.

Scaling is terrible and I can’t even show the full width with half of the 16:9 monitor, if I scale down the bank reconciliation page, the other page which acts normal will shrink!

September 13, 2021 at 10.24 pm

We are customers are unhappy and frustrated with the new Rec pages.

The font is so BIG that it is not readable. Everyday we are struggling to reconcile in the new Rec pages. I have experience designing webpages and know that it takes only 5 minutes to change the font size and font type.

The previous Rec pages font type and size were just perfect. Please give us the option to revert back to the way it was.

I won’t be recommending Xero to anyone as the new Rec pages are not user-friendly and it is just impossible to work on these new Rec pages.

September 15, 2021 at 3.45 pm

Nothing seems to have changed with my bank reconciliation page – is the update still getting rolled out?

Beeny Atherton in reply to Melissa Xero
September 16, 2021 at 11.27 am

Hi Melissa, yes – we are gradually rolling the update out so you should see the changes soon. Please let us know what you think when you do. Thanks!

Graeme Bartlett
September 20, 2021 at 5.13 pm

Layout of customers has changed. How do I revert to the previous layout?
This is a step in the wrong direction!

September 22, 2021 at 6.16 am

Kia ora. A couple of problems I have found is that now I can not open another contact into a new tab. And when searching using the magnifying glass (on the contact page) the menubar is blocking the dropdown. TY

Xero in reply to NZ Xero
September 22, 2021 at 11.54 am

Hi Lucy, thank you for letting us know about the menu bar blocking the dropdown – your comment has been shared with our Product team.

Irina in reply to Xero
September 25, 2021 at 10.38 pm

Hi IT team,

We are customers are exhausted to work in your new Rec page layout. It takes a few minutes to change the font and size, and reverse it to the way it was before. We, customers, want the previous version of Rec pages.

Every day we are struggling to work efficiently on your new Rec pages. You wanted feedback from the customers. you got it!!! Reverse it ASAP !!!

When are you going to reverse to the previous layout in the Rec pages?

September 24, 2021 at 2.03 am

Why is it so massive now? It takes longer to reconcile because I am constantly having to scroll down as only one transaction appears on my page at a time.

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