By Stuart Woodhouse, 10 June 2015
Xero remains the number one piece of software our clients want their FileMaker solution integrated with.
This has been the case for nearly five years now, but what we are finding is that clients are keen to integrate FileMaker and Xero in different ways, and for different business reasons.
Traditionally the request was to ‘push’ all invoicing (including invoice contact details) from a FileMaker solution through to Xero.
Now clients are wanting more than just the invoice contact details pushed through, and they are keen for the information to flow both ways, from FileMaker to Xero and back again.
To follow are some of the requests and work we have performed by using the Digital Fusion Xero plugin. We have also listed the business case as to why this is important:
As mentioned above, this is the most requested form of integration. Depending on how well your FileMaker solution is developed we can get this working reasonably quickly, but sometimes it does take additional work to make sure FileMaker is setup correctly.
Business use: Integrating FileMaker with Xero in this way allows for a seamless experience for your staff. They are able to raise invoices in FileMaker and all this information then flows through to your accounting package, in this case Xero. The integration works behind the scenes so once an invoice is finalised there is nothing more that is needed to be done.
This is becoming a more sought after requirement for integrations we perform. As above, invoice and contact information is pushed from FileMaker to Xero but in this case account updates are pulled back from Xero into FileMaker. This one has a few more things to take into consideration, the main one being how often the information needs to come back from Xero into FileMaker. Xero has a limit on the number of daily ‘calls’ that can be made to and from their software, so we can’t have an endless pull of information back from Xero to FileMaker (although we have some cunning ways to get around this)
Business use: The big gain with a two way flow is that this allows all your staff to see how a client account is looking without having to give them access to Xero itself. Now sales staff can see if a client has their account up to to date, or they can now be the ‘prompter’ when discussing outstanding accounts with clients. Although Xero now offer ‘limited access’ to the software, having all this information in FileMaker makes for a seamless experience, with all client information contained within one solution.
Typically we have only pushed contact information through to Xero when an invoice is raised. Xero then looks to see if the client already exists and if not, it adds it as a new client.
Recently we have been asked to integrate all contacts that are in FileMaker with Xero. This can include contacts such as supplier, staff etc, essentially any contact that you believe will need a reference in Xero.
Business use: The big gains here are around reducing double handing, you know longer need to key in details in both solutions, increasing the overall accuracy of data.
As you can tell from the above, there are a number of options to consider when integrating FileMaker with Xero. Each come with varying degrees of complexity but all are possible and becoming more the norm.
We like to think of ourselves as the experts in integration with Xero so if you requirements match the above or differ in any way, please get in touch we would love to discuss your requirements.