Innovation on show at Xerocon London 2024

Xerocon is Xero’s flagship event, bringing together accountants from across the globe to showcase its latest innovations and product updates. This year’s Xerocon, held in London, continued this tradition with a focus on new tools designed to enhance efficiency and compliance for businesses.

Stuart Pedlar, Digital Lead at Westcotts delivering the firm’s cloud accounting products, reviews some of the key announcements.

Just Ask Xero (JAX)

One of the most exciting announcements at Xerocon 2024 was the introduction of Just Ask Xero (JAX). Available in beta from August, this smart business companion is AI-powered to revolutionise accounting for small businesses. The technology aims to make the experience more intuitive and accessible overall.

JAX leverages generative AI to assist users with a variety of accounting tasks. From generating invoices to editing quotes, JAX can perform these actions through commonly used platforms like mobile, WhatsApp, and email.

JAX uses new proprietary technology that ensures higher accuracy by feeding the AI the relevant data needed for specific tasks. This approach addresses common issues with AI, such as data inaccuracies, and ensures that the information provided by JAX is both precise and reliable. Early adopters should be cautious about its abilities at this stage. However, the technology highlights the ambition of the sector to introduce AI into everyday business tasks.

‘Tap to Pay’ and Buy Now Pay Later

Xero also announced it will be the first major accounting platform to offer tap to pay in the UK. This will enable businesses to accept payments via the Xero Accounting app on their smart device. Xero’s own research found that 50% of small businesses are paid late. This technology would allow businesses to both raise an invoice and take payment at the same time.

Tap to Pay will be partnered with Stripe, one of the largest global payment platforms, and will first be offered to Android users in a beta program in August. It will then be available on more platforms in the following months.

In addition, announcements were made to confirm that businesses will soon be able to offer bank transfer and buy now pay later options. This will further improve the range of ways to accept payments in a complex business environment.

Supplier Payments and eInvoicing

In late 2023, Xero introduced ‘bill payments’ which partners with Crezco. Since then, Xero has produced further updates and streamlined the payments system. This allows businesses to connect their Xero data to their bank. From there, they can select the bills they want to pay from the outstanding items in Xero. They can use a direct bank transfer to make the payment by authorising it through online banking or an app.

Bill payments are currently a paid extra at 20p (ex. VAT) per payment, although changes to plans announced for September 2024 will provide a small inclusive number of payments for each plan. This means that this end-to-end accounts payable function could see the most significant shift in business processes since document capture.

Another key innovation with Xero is its eInvoicing capabilities leading the charge to a more connected business environment. Businesses will be able to send and receive invoices directly between accounting software reducing both errors and delays. Currently, Xero users can opt in to receive invoices only. However, it was announced that sending invoices will also be possible by Autumn 2024. This becomes critically important for businesses potentially transacting with certain EU countries or Government entities in future where mandating of eInvoicing is slowly being introduced.

Next steps

Xero’s latest innovations at Xerocon 2024 underscore its commitment to improving efficiency and compliance for UK businesses, providing powerful tools to streamline everyday accounting tasks. At Westcotts, we can help you utilise these tools to help power and grow your business.

Talk to one of our digital services team at to discuss moving to cloud software or how to improve your current systems.


Written by Stuart Pedlar

June 25, 2024

Category: Blog

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