Josh LanceJosh Lance
Part 1 – Xero In On Xero: Xero Projects

Part 1 – Xero In On Xero: Xero Projects

One of Xero’s newest features is Xero Projects.  Xero Projects allows you to do project-based accounting in order to give you a better sense of the profitability of your projects.  You can set up your projects with tasks, track time and expenses, invoice on the projects, and track the progress and profitability of these projects.  Since Xero Projects lives within Xero, activity you do within Projects is tied to other areas within Xero, like contacts and invoicing. Let’s jump in and do a deep dive into how Xero Projects works.

Xero Projects has its own top level menu in Xero. When you first go into Projects, you will land in the All Projects page. This page gives you a view on all of the Projects you have created in Xero that are in progress. For this deep dive into Xero Projects, I’m going to create a new project. To create a project, click on the New Project button on the All Projects page and enter the information for this project. Since Xero Projects is fully embedded into Xero, you will choose a contact from the contacts portion of Xero and enter other details necessary to get this project started, like a project name and a due date for the project. For this example we’re going to do a consulting project due on March 31st for Sam’s Design Company.

Once this project is created, we’re brought into the project screen. The project screen has three main sections. The first section is Tasks & Expenses.  Tasks are the different milestones within our project that need to be completed in order for us to complete the project. To add tasks, we will click on the Add button and click Tasks. When you add tasks you can add whether the task is chargeable or not, the charge amount per hour, and the estimated number of hours for this task. 

Once you have all of your tasks in Projects, you’re able to start recording time and expenses for this project.  On this same screen you also have the list of expenses related to this project. These expenses can be added by clicking the same Add button and then Expenses, or assigning expenses from bills or spend money transactions within Xero. When you add or assign expenses to your projects, you can record whether or not the expense is chargeable to the client, and the price you will charge them for it.  This price can be different than what you paid for it.

Once you have all of your expenses added to the project, you will see them listed in the Tasks & Expenses screen.  The list will include each project and if it’s non-chargeable or came from a bill or spend money transaction.

In part 2 of our Xero in on Xero series, Josh will discuss the time section and the different ways you can record time against a project.  Look for it coming soon!  In the meantime, if you have any questions, schedule a call with us!

About Josh Lance

A licensed certified public accountant (IL) and Chartered Global Management Accountant, Josh is also a family man who calls Chicago home.  Before venturing on his own with a mission to help small businesses, Josh spent his early career at a top-10 national public accounting firm before working at an ultra high net worth family office.  Josh is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL.  He enjoys making wine at home, cooking, traveling, and cheering on his favorite football and soccer teams. Josh was honored by being selected to the 2017 class of the AICPA Leadership Academy and was named as one of the 40 under 40 in 2017 by CPA Practice Advisor.