From XU Magazine, 
Issue 17

How to manage your files: SuiteFiles + Xero Practice Manager

Xero is a great hub for your financial data, but what about your files? This tutorial introduces you to the key features of SuiteFiles’ integration with Xero’s practice management platform, and how you can use it to automate and streamline your file management...
This article originated from the Xero blog. The XU Hub is an independent news and media platform - for Xero users, by Xero users. Any content, imagery and associated links below are directly from Xero and not produced by the XU Hub.
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After attending many Xerocons, nothing gets a bigger murmur of approval than when accountants see SuiteFiles’ integration with Xero Practice Manager. That’s because we all know what a pain it can be to access data between apps, as well as the risk of having duplicated, and potentially incorrect, information across systems.

Many accountants globally use Xero’s practice management platform to help them manage their practices day-to-day, but like other similar apps, it’s not a file management system at heart. While you can store source documents, it’s harder to edit and manage them overall.

Digital documents are easy to accidentally duplicate or file away in a hard to access app. Integrations play a key role in not only making it easier to pull these files together into one accessible location, but they help to automate basic tasks and streamlining your workflow.

Why have ‘one source of truth’ for your files? Businesses benefit from the greater security, accessibility, and improved organisation of having all their documents in one place. We built an integration between SuiteFiles and Xero Practice Manager way back in 2013 because we saw this would be a need for accountants as they moved more operations to the cloud.

SuiteFiles and Xero Practice Manager work in perfect harmony to ensure that your business files are easy to manage, find, and work with. Here’s how!

How to manage your files between SuiteFiles and Xero Practice Manager

Saving files between XPM and SuiteFiles:

Xero Practice Manager (XPM) has a documents tab for clients where you can store important files. SuiteFiles connects to this documents tab and allows you to access files from either app, regardless of which system the file was originally saved to.

Benefits: Access all your business and client files from one place through SuiteFiles. Work easily with these files by editing them directly from a web browser or opening them into the relevant Microsoft Office app. If you open the file out of XPM, it will simply download the document and you’ll have to re-upload or save it again to a system of your choice.

How to enable the integration: SuiteFiles is listed in the ‘Document Management’ section of the ‘Connections Settings’ in XPM. Simply click ‘Enable’ next to SuiteFiles.

Quick tip: The documents tab also exists for ‘Jobs’ and ‘Quotes’ in XPM, which SuiteFiles can connect to.

Prepopulation – Personalise your files and emails based on your templates

You can create and store file, email and folder templates within SuiteFiles. Custom fields are then used to quickly personalise them for a specific client.  For example, when you create a new file using an existing template, you can pull customer data out of XPM to prepopulate it.

Benefits: No more copying and pasting client information to add to new documents. It’s all automatically taken from XPM and added for you. Using SuiteFiles’ new prepopulation feature, you can now preview what information will replace the custom fields, and manually change that information if needed.

How to create a template: Click on the three dots next to the file name and select ‘Save as Template.’ Give the template a name and add it to a template category to make it easy to find later.

Quick tip: Prepopulation works for emails and attachments as well. Just create an email template with an attachment included. When creating a new email based off a template, you can prepopulate the attachment as well.

Using the Chrome Extension

The SuiteFiles Chrome extension introduces additional functionality into Xero Practice Manager when you use a Chrome web browser. With the extension, you can trigger actions in SuiteFiles from within XPM, such as:

• Get prompted to create a client folder in SuiteFiles when you set up a new client in XPM

• Have the client folder in SuiteFiles automatically renamed or archived when the client is renamed or archived in XPM

• Print files to PDF and save in SuiteFiles

Benefits: The Chrome extension gives you even more automation between XPM and SuiteFiles, dramatically reducing the number of steps you need to take to set up a new client. It also ensures that your file system is up-to-date and consistent with XPM.

How to install the Chrome extension: In SuiteFiles, click on your name in the app to access your ‘Settings’ options. Click on the ‘Download apps…’ option, followed by the ‘Download’ button under ‘Chrome Extension.’ This will take you to the SuiteFiles extension in the Chrome web store. Click ‘Add to Chrome.’ After installation, refresh your web browser before navigating to XPM.

Quick tip: Under the client name in XPM is a quick link to the corresponding client folder in SuiteFiles. Clicking on this will automatically open the folder in a new tab.

Find our guide to creating a beautiful, searchable file system in this issue of XU Magazine: > pg. 38

Why leave it there?

For a comprehensive deep-dive look at SuiteFiles’ integration with Xero Practice Manager, visit the SuiteFiles blog

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Michael Ford
Adrian Pearson
Louise Sellars