Now is a good time to discuss a common point of confusion: where do I send my invoices from when using Xero Practice Manager and Xero? The answer is Xero. Despite Xero Practice Manager providing greater flexibility around the information we can include on invoices there are several reasons we should send our invoices from Xero:
- Xero allows us to include payment services on our invoices so our customers can pay us faster.
- Xero invoices have online versions so we can see when customers have received and opened the invoices we send.
- Xero payment reminders allow us to customise and automate the reminders that get sent for late invoices helping us get paid quicker.
- Xero’s invoice history is easier to view, add notes to, and read which allows us to capture collections information easier.
- Xero is where we manage our debtors and reconcile our bank accounts
- Our fixed price agreement invoices will be sent from Xero. This ensures our invoices have a consistent look/feel.
There are some downsides to this however:
- Fewer staff have access to Xero which means that although we can delegate invoice creation to the people who know these jobs best (job managers or partners); the sending of these invoices still needs to happen in the accounts department which can create bottlenecks for a practice.
- Xero invoices are easily edited. This is a strength and a weakness, as changes to invoice values or line item descriptions do not flow back to the invoice in Xero Practice Manager. This can cause budget vs invoiced value discrepancies where we are generating multiple progress invoices.
- Having to edit invoices in Xero duplicates the effort that has gone into creating quotes, jobs and generating invoices in WorkflowMax.
When we raise an invoice in Xero Practice Manager, the invoice also will be created in Xero via the API. We therefore need to consider the question - where do we send our invoices from? All time charge invoices will be created in WorkflowMax, but once approved, a copy of the invoice arrives in Xero. Do we send our client the invoice from Xero, or from WorkflowMax?
We send them from Xero. Although Xero Practice Manager gives us an invoice that we can email to our clients, we will be sending the actual copy from Xero. The main reason is consistency. We don’t want the risk of sending a follow up invoice that shows completely different information to the original invoice. We therefore draw a line in the sand and say all invoices are sent from Xero.