From XU Magazine, 
Issue 28

Importing Bank Statements into Xero

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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As automation gets smarter, it’s beginning to take over more and more thankless workplace tasks. And automated bank statements are a welcome feature for several reasons. Perhaps more than any other form of admin, love it or loath it, entering your bank or credit card statement data manually into Xero is a laborious task.

Here are five great reasons you should automate your statement entry. We’re also giving some advice on getting started in bank statement automation.

1) Automation saves time and money

Naturally, whether you’re a small business or an accountant, you don’t relish the manual entry or transfer of bank statement information. It’s and time-consuming.

Time does have a monetary value, whether it’s hours of labour paid for or time that could be spent running the business.

2) Automation makes it easier to be tax compliant

One of the great nuisances of taxes (apart from the paperwork itself), is the filing and maintaining of old documents.

Accountants are often asked how long a business should keep old tax records and bank statements. The answer varies according to territory. In the UK it’s five years; in the United States it’s six, and so on. The very least is two years, wherever you are.

Maintaining accounting records digitally and in the cloud makes it much easier to keep all the necessary paperwork close at hand. It also saves on the cost of storage, as far less storage is needed when records are paperless.

And, of course, there’s the automation vs human error factor. Automation can reduce human error by up to 53%, according to a recent survey of hundreds of CFOs. As any tax auditor will tell you, errors can be costly! 

3) Information is consolidated when you automate bank statements

Much of admin and accounting is manually funnelling relevant information into one location. So, one of the ways in which automating bank statements can save enormous amounts of time is in the consolidation of data. With the right software, you can automatically have invoices, receipts and statements all loaded into the relevant software or documents. 

4) It makes borrowing easier

This consolidated and accurate data is catnip for lenders, providing a centralised narrative of all your company’s finances. Your books are your story, and the clearer the story, the better position you’re in when it comes to borrowing.

5) It’s future proofing

Recent months have revealed how agile (or not) companies are, from small and medium businesses to huge enterprises.

Automating bank statements allows for remote working, it’s paperless and it’s cloud based. All of this allows for a more agile, functional business.   

How to Automate Bank Statement Entry

With AutoEntry you can scan bank and credit card statements and upload them to AutoEntry, that you can quickly and easily import the data into your accounts software or even just to an Excel sheet if that’s all you need.  

Accountants also have the option of “fetching”. This allows for accountants to share a safe link with the client, so AutoEntry “fetches” the statements from the bank (usually in a pdf format) on behalf of the client. Then, the fetched pdf file can be processed within AutoEntry. This simple, automated process, results in the bank statements’ information being collated into an excel sheet for manual analysis or imported into your accounting software.

AutoEntry – giving you the gift of time

Accountants and small businesses around the world are discovering that AutoEntry can save them several working hours per week by automating accounting and admin tasks. If you’d like to know more, booking an AutoEntry Demo or trial would be a perfect place to start.

Firstly, where available, the best step to take is to set up a bank feed direct from your bank to your accounts package. This removes any intervention by you or your client/accountant as the bank transactions are automatically updated in the accounts direct from the bank.

However, there are times, especially if a bank feed is not available, that paper or PDF statements are all you have to work with. So, the manual intervention begins? With AutoEntry, download the statements as a PDF from your online banking portal or scan the paper bank and credit card statements and upload those files to AutoEntry. A full extraction is completed including verification to ensure accuracy returning the extracted data to you in your AutoEntry inbox. With a simple click you then have your extracted statement data in a format to import into your accounts package or indeed, if required, into a standard Excel or .csv file. If you’re downloading your statements as an ePDF direct from the bank, the extraction and verification processing time is also up to ten times faster that when uploading scanned paper statements.

Or, of course, fetching is also available to fetch the statements for you.

To add the final cherry to the cake, the storage of the extracted data and the image of the original document is included in the cost of the extraction. So you can maintain a full digital audit trail within AutoEntry without the need for costly filing cabinets filling your office or external storage.

We have a comprehensive guide to banking and credit card statements and how to upload them to AutoEntry.

Why leave it there?

You can get started on AutoEntry with a free trial

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