What to consider when choosing an
Add-on for Xero

It’s no secret that the right technology stack can provide your practice with a significant competitive advantage. So it’s worthwhile putting some time aside to research the Xero Add-ons that can evolve your practice to the next level.

As one of Xero’s foundational Add-ons, Fathom has been around for five years and services 10,000 business and advisors. Armed with this experience, the team at Fathom has put together this list of useful questions to ask when researching which Add-ons will add value to your business.

1. Who is the Add-on for?

Firstly, it’s important to understand if the Add-on is tailored for your use or that of your clients. Many Add-ons are useful for both the client and the advisor. Fathom is one such Add-on, delivering insightful performance reports for businesses and their advisors. However, some Add-ons are specifically applicable to accounting practices only.

2. How does it work with Xero?

Some Add-ons sit upstream and push data into Xero, while others sit downstream and pull data from Xero. And some Add-ons push and pull data. Understanding where the Add-on sits in the information value chain is important.

3. What type of business is this Add-on suitable for?

If the Add-on is useful for your clients, then which industry verticals does the Add-on work well with? Some Add-ons are classified as horizontal and support business across all industries (such as Fathom); while others are useful for specific industry niches only.

4. What assistance is provided to help me get started?

Most Add-ons provide a free trial. Some offer regular webinars. Some even provide onboarding and implementation support to help you get started. Know what support you need, and what support is offered.

5. How much does it cost?

While it is important to understand how an Add-on is licensed, it is even more important to quantify the value that the Add-on will provide to you. For example, an Add-on may cost $100 per month, but will it save you hours of administrative work each week? If so, then perhaps this represents time that can then be reallocated to delivering more value-adding advisory services. Understanding this value is vital to making an informed decision and starting your journey with a Xero Add-on.

Finally, I’d also recommend visiting the Xero Add-on Marketplace to see what other users are saying. The reviews provide insightful first-hand information that can help inform your decision.

David Watson
Director and Co-Founder

This article originally appeared in XU Magazine, Issue 03, 2015

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