We recently covered Xerocon North America, but since I didn't get invited to Brisbane, Australia, for Xerocon South's "Down Under" conference, I couldn't very well focus on Xero. But there were a few exciting things unwrapped at last week's meet-up in Australia.
One of the big announcements was the expanded Global Partner Program, which is based in part around its new Xero HQ platform. The enhanced program brings together millions of dollars of investment in new tools to connect small businesses to advisors.
The program is designed to activate the success rate of partners and small business owners by simply and easily connecting them to advice and services that make a difference.
Xero connects more accountants and bookkeepers to small businesses than any other platform. To date, some 89 percent of Xero subscribers already connect to advisors. One reason is that right out of the box (well really, a download from the Cloud) Xero asks during product installation if the user is "hooked up" with an accountant or bookkeeper. If not, they work toward making such a connection happen.
The practice of linking Xero, the user and the accountant/bookkeeper is simple – Xero's research suggests that small businesses that use an accountant grew net profits 23 percent faster than those that did not.
Available in November, the expanded global Partner Program is designed to support partners with a new Advisor Directory, enriched education and practice tools, and new levels of rewards and recognition:
No. 1 –Xero HQ - A new way for partners to work
The new Open Practice Platform will enable partners to connect to the apps they want to use:
- Developers can integrate with the Xero ecosystem for small business apps and develop integrations for Xero HQ
- Prioritize work using the activity feed to see which clients need action and when
- Drill into clients with Explorer based on industry, apps or banking relationships
- Streamline reporting with new Report Templates
- View a list of all clients in one place
- Use staff management tools, including visibility over their staff’s certification status.
No. 2 – Attract new clients with better visibility on the Xero Advisor Directory
Xero’s Advisor Directory, already a substantial source of client leads for partners, has been improved with new technology and designs that make it easier for the more than 20,000 people globally who search the directory every month to find a financial advisor to suit their needs.
The new geo-sensing feature showcases partners that operate within the area the small business is situated, while other features, such as the sophisticated search function, detailed listings and richer profile pages, equip partners with the tools to market their businesses and grow their client base.
No. 3 – More interactive ways for partners to learn Xero
Xero U has a new look with a personalized learning experience and enriched Xero Certification process.
No. 4 – Points system for partners to earn a higher status and unlock new benefits
Pioneered in Australia, partners on a global basis now will receive points for growing with Xero by adding new clients, being invited in to collaborate with clients, and expanding into the Xero product suite so that partners can grow at a faster pace, and unlock more benefits.
No. 5 – New recognition for growing and highly trained partners
Many partners are investing to certify and grow their Xero client list. A new special distinction has been introduced in the partner program called Xero Champion, which offers extra rewards for partners achieving champion performance.
No. 6 – Refreshed benefits, and a new Xero Store for Partners
Partners will be able to order branded Xero merchandise and other marketing resources exclusive to partners through the new Xero Store.
The expanded global Partner Program is designed to highlight Xero’s commitment to being the best in the industry.