Xero integration

Using Xero? Add these 3 accounts to your expenses today

The beauty of Xero is it can be so simple to start. But the chart of account (all those income and expenses you can allocate to) are preconfigured, which means as business has changed…some changes should be made.

The general rule of thumb is if a particular type of expense is more than 10% of your whole expenses, it should have its own account.

So here are your 3.

Software -critical systems (Xero, G-Suite, all the things you NEED, domain names too) Software adds so much depth to a business, and understanding this separate to other costs is useful. This should be increasing as your time spent doing useless admin is decreasing.

Software - Useful systems (Canva, Planoly, Evernote - stuff that helps, but it’s replaceable) This account allows you to understand if you have on-going subscriptions that you need to prune. Pretty much guaranteed to save you money in the age of the SAAS trials and subscriptions.

Client expenses to be repaid This is critical to make sure if your business buys materials or subscriptions on behalf of your clients, they need to be repaid. Having a separate account helps you identify any missed expenses that are coming out of your pocket.

Case Study - The Quilt Shop - Vend and Xero

Vend + Xero 

Alison and Sharon wanted their systems to be as well designed as their dream store. They use a Vend + Xero integration, with wireless iPad, printer and scanner technology.



For a new store in Eltham, a simple to use POS was their goal.


The quilt shop is a local business in leafy Eltham.  Committed to providing not just a quilt shop, but a whole feel good experience. The Quilt Shop will be a place where you can just pop in and say hi or stay for a cuppa and a slice of cake.  They sell fabric, kits, patterns and supplies.  The store is beautifully presented.  The instore experience  is throughly enjoyable for customers.


The Quiltshop wanted the countertop to be uncluttered and stylish.  

The biggest challenge was the fact that the inventory needed to be sold in portions.  Fabric is measured (and priced) by the metre. Therefore any POS system such as Vend needed to be able to sell items in part.  

The integration needed to be seamless and help them manage the complex inventory.  With thousands of different product lines, hundreds of ranges, and dozens of Brands.  All with ease of use.

Other challenges during our planning meeting identified that they needed inventory management.  
Suppliers sent incorrect items or only part shipped purchase orders frequently.



The first thing we did to ensure ease of use was the combination of Xero and Vend.  We created a beautiful physical guide, tailored to their business and processes.  From how to do sales, refunds, inventory counts, to even how to post COGS into Xero.    This printed guide was also provided as an ebook and loaded into their ibooks on the store iPad.

The Hardware visible to the customer is an iPad Air mounted on a studio proper base.  All the other items, wireless scanner, wireless printer, and cash drawer are tucked away out of sight.  This kept Sharon happy with the finished custom countertop.

The Quiltshop collects customer details as part of a VIP loyalty program.  Part of the appeal of Vend was the creation of promotions not relying on discounting.  

Part receipting purchase orders and viewing outstanding items has made Alison's role easier.  Alison had been doing an amazing job keeping track of inventory shipments with a colour coded highlighter system.  Vend now saves Alison time (and highlighters).


Pictured is the 70 page printed guide created by Bramble and Briar.  Used for training and as a reference.

Vend and Xero has automated much of the accounting processes.  Business admin can be managed all during business hours - no matter how busy it is instore. 

Yet if Sharon and Alison need to take time out to be at home, they still have the flexibility to log into the system any time, any place.


Harvest and marking up expenses

If you've got expenses to be on charged to a client, with a set marked up amount - there is a way to configure Harvest to include those expenses at the grossed up amount.

Let's use the example of an interior designer.  The interior designer uses Harvest to bill her time to clients, but all materials sourced for clients are to be marked up by 15%.  Many people record the expense at cost in Harvest, and then make the adjustment at invoicing time.   

Rather than risk forgetting to having to adjust the expenses (or even bother with having to do it at all), set up your expense category so that it has a unit price equal to the percentage markup.  In this example, our client wants to mark their sourced items up by 15%, so we put the cost as $1.15 per unit.  Each unit, is each item we have sourced at cost.

Then, when it comes time to put in our expenses, we just record them at cost, include the receipt for our records and voila!  The expense is recorded at $160 ready to be billed.  Have a closer look at the gallery below to see the configuration, and how it looks in action.