Next steps after conversion to Xero
We try to make your conversion as comprehensive as possible, aiming to save you as much time as we can. However, there are some things that we are not able to do because of limitations in the software process we use.
This means that there will be some post-conversion tasks that you will need to perform and this document is provided as a guide to completing these tasks. The post-conversion tasks should be done as soon as possible after your conversion. If you encounter problems or think something might not be right please refer to our troubleshooting page.
These are the tasks you will need to perform post-conversion:
- Tidy the VAT
- Tidy bank reconciliations
- Tidy foreign currency (if applicable)
Tidy the VAT
We do not set your VAT number and return periods. This is something that you will want to correct before completing your next VAT return.
Go to Settings > General Settings > Financial Settings
You can now set your VAT details as required.
File the most recent VAT period you've already submitted to HMRC. Xero will then be able to recognise any future transactions entered that are dated back into historical VAT period as "late" claims. These will then automatically be included in the next VAT Return.
Click the Reports menu and select VAT Return.
Pick the date for the most recently completed VAT Return. Update the Return to show the appropriate details and then choose File VAT Now...
Check and amend any of the options provided and then click File & Publish.
Make sure to untick the option to File now with HMRC (as it's already been submitted) then clicking File & Publish again to complete the process.
Note that when preparing your first VAT Return in Xero, it won't include any unfiled "late" claims relating to prior periods and may be incorrect if we'd had to use some workarounds. We recommend you carefully check the figures in this first Xero VAT Return. If the figures provided by Xero are different to those you need to file with HMRC you may need to manually submit an adjusted VAT Return direct to HMRC (and file an incorrect VAT Return in Xero). This should only affect the first VAT Return to be submitted to HMRC. Subsequent VAT Returns should not require any manual adjustments. To read more about why VAT Returns may be different for the same period in the old and new software please click here.
Tidy bank reconciliations
We try our best to convert the bank reconciled status of transactions but this is not always possible. Xero prevents us from marking overpayments or prepayments as reconciled so you will probably need to manually complete this so that the “Statement Balance” in Xero is correct.
Remember, there are potentially two balances shown on the Dashboard for each bank account – the “Balance in Xero” is the “books” balance from your old system. The “Statement” balance is the total of transactions marked as reconciled in Xero.
To tidy your bank reconciliations click on the Manage Account button then Account Transactions
You now want to make sure that you enable the Mark as reconciled function via the help menu
We also recommend that, if you have a large number of transactions to mark as reconciled, you switch the page view to show 200 items. This will allow you to tick the top checkbox in the left column and mark transactions in blocks of 200 if you wish
All you need to do now is mark the transactions you want to change to reconciled and click select Mark as Reconciled from the More button.
If your bank balance was fully reconciled in your desktop software, you will want to mark all transactions as reconciled. Then your “Balance in Xero” and “Statement Balance” will be the same.
If your account was not fully reconciled in your desktop software, you will want to leave the unreconciled items as remaining unreconciled. Then your “Statement Balance” will be the same as the statement or cleared balance in your desktop software.
Tidy foreign currency (if applicable)
The recommendations below may not always be required or optimal for your user case. Please read them carefully and consider if they are relevant to you before attempting to apply them.
All bank accounts will be in base currency so create new foreign currency bank accounts. You'll need to have added your currency to Settings > General Settings > Currencies first. Once the currencies are added, navigate to Accounts > Bank Accounts and click Add Bank Account. Follow the prompts making sure to select the correct currency for the bank account.
Once you have the new foreign currency account you may wish to transfer the GBP balance into the new foreign currency account. Do this by navigating to Accounts > Bank Accounts and selecting Transfer Money. Choose to transfer from the GBP account to the foreign currency account. Enter the date to be the same as the "convert to" date selected for the conversion. Apply an exchange rate such that the GBP account will be emptied and the deposit in the foreign currency account will reflect the correct foreign currency amount.
If there are unreconciled foreign currency transactions you may wish to transfer the unreconciled transactions as individual Transfer Money transactions. The remaining balance can then be transferred as lump sum and manually marked as reconciled.
If you have any outstanding foreign currency invoices or bills before converting then these will also have been converted at their GBP equivalent value. You may wish to edit (or void then re-enter) these to correctly reflect the foreign currency values owed or owing.