Icon Security switches to Xero with help from Platinum Partner Old Mill
West Country accountants and financial planners Old Mill have always been ahead of the game when it comes to technology and were one of the first accountancy firms in the West to embrace cloud technology. Aware of the benefits the cloud had brought to their own business, Old Mill was keen to show their clients how working on the cloud could benefit them too.
So in 2014, Old Mill started working with Xero, the UK’s leading cloud accounting software company. Since signing up their first client to Xero in June 2014, Old Mill have been named UK Emerging Partner of the year at Xero’s annual awards ceremony and become one of only a handful of Partners to reach Platinum status. And they’re not stopping now – so impressed by what Xero can do for small businesses, Old Mill are continuing to set up their own clients with the software when they feel it could really benefit them as Jude Bennett, (pictured left) Old Mill’s financial technology specialist explains:
“When we were first looking into Xero, we began approaching clients to see if they’d be keen to trial it with us. Many of our clients came from a spreadsheet background with many coming to us with bags of receipts to input manually, but they were keen to try something new, so they came along on the journey with us – that’s how we got the ball rolling.”
One of those clients was Somerset based IT consultants Icon Security. Run by IT entrepreneur Denise Cater, Icon specialises in the security assessment of products. Like many start ups, when she first started the business eight years ago, Denise initially managed her financial transactions with a set of very simple spreadsheets ‘cobbled together’.
While these were sufficient, they were not offering any useful analysis, so Old Mill introduced Denise to Xero.
“The spreadsheets were tracking and recording all necessary financial transactions” explains Denise, “but not providing anything in the way of reporting the financial position of the business, or making any useful year on year comparisons. They also relied entirely on manual input of data.
Old Mill introduced me to Xero and it was clear from the start that it could be very beneficial to Icon.
As well as providing mechanisms for importing data from bank feeds, Xero supports the end of year preparation of accounts, which reduces the burden on both myself and Old Mill at end of year.”
Denise says that Xero also provides numerous reports by default, which allows her to easily view the current financial picture and perform comparisons with previous years.
“It provides me with a full picture of the accounts, which is something I was previously missing. It also supports the generation of invoices and submission of VAT returns, which is a great benefit.”
Denise says that not only has Xero helped her with the business now, but says it will also help her in the future.
“As a single employee, there is only so much I can do, and I need to concentrate on my own clients rather than waste time inputting data and creating reports.
“Xero is therefore a huge time saver for me; it allows me to easily summarise, compare and contrast the sales invoices over an accounting period to see the fluctuations which gives me a much better overall view of the business.
“I would certainly recommend Xero to small businesses like my own. Old Mill are one of only a few businesses that are platinum partners of Xero’s and this experience and knowledge of the product really shows; they knew how much Xero could benefit the business, and provided excellent support during its adoption, which was invaluable.”