This article gives an explanation of:

  • how Expend card transactions are synchronised to Xero 
  • the effect of your Expense Sync Settings 
  • bank statements 
  • how you can reconcile your bank statement and account transactions

Expend card transactions in Xero

In Xero, when you go to Accounting > Bank accounts and select your Expend Account:

you will find your Expend card transactions in two places:

  • Under Account transactions
  • Under Bank statements

Account transactions

Transactions are synced to your account transactions once they meet the criteria specified under Expense Sync Settings on the Xero Integration page of your Expend dashboard. The options are:

  • The transaction is final, and you’ve approved or rejected it (default) 
  • You’ve approved or rejected it 
  • The transaction is final 
  • The card is used

You can read more about the implications of choosing each of these settings here. An explanation is also shown on the dashboard page when choosing a particular setting.

Only transactions matching the criteria you set are synchronised to your Xero account transactions. These transactions will contain the copies of receipts, the breakdown of line items, tax amounts, and so forth – all the details that you add in Expend.

On Xero, in the Status column, you may see that some transactions show Unreconciled – more information about reconciling transactions follows below.

While transactions are unreconciled, changes you make in Expend will be synchronised to Xero. However, once transactions are reconciled, Expend can no longer update them in Xero.

Bank statements

Separately from account transactions, Expend sends statements to Xero once a day. This is analogous to the data imported from your bank – either statements imported manually or that are sent in automatically if you have a bank feed enabled. With the Expend integration with Xero, these entries go in automatically. They appear under the Bank statements tab in Xero. It works exactly like an ordinary bank statement import that has to be reconciled against the transactions in the account. 

There are no special actions required to set this up; it starts working as soon as you connect Expend and Xero. It works just like other bank feeds you may have, so “cleared” transactions will be updated in Xero once a day. A transaction is cleared when the merchant takes the money, which usually takes a day or two. If you don't see a recent transaction, it may be because it has not cleared yet.

So does Expend upload every transaction twice?

Yes. One is the statement entry (once a day) and the other is the Expend Account transaction (as needed, according to your sync settings).

Example

Let’s say that you’ve set the “You’ve approved or rejected it” option in your Expense Sync Settings. One of your company’s cardholders bought a coffee for £2.00 last week, but you haven’t approved it yet.

In Xero, if you look under Bank transactions, you will almost certainly find the transaction there, showing Unreconciled in the Status column. However, you will not find it under Account transactions, since it has not yet met the criteria for being synced because it has not yet been approved.

Now let’s say you go to the Review page on your Expend dashboard, find the £2.00 transaction, and approve it. It now meets the criteria to upload to your Xero account transactions.

If you go back to Xero, refresh, and look under Account transactions, you should now find the transaction appearing there. If you click it, you will see all the details and receipts that were added in Expend. In the Status column, this transaction will also show Unreconciled.

Reconciliation

Reconciliation is the process whereby you compare 

  • lines from a statement of your transactions imported into Xero, with 
  • transactions created in Xero

to make sure that everything matches up.

There are different ways that you can do this (see this article) but using the Bank statement is a simple and straightforward option. If you choose this, you will be comparing the entries under the Bank statement tab in Xero (uploaded automatically by Expend) with the transactions under Account transactions, uploaded as they meet your sync criteria.

To perform reconciliation, simply click the Reconcile tab in Xero on your Expend Account page. Xero suggests matches (bank statement lines on the left; account transactions on the right) and is generally very good at getting it right. If it looks right, you can simply click the OK button.

Issues when reconciling

You may find that the dates are out by a day or two. This is because the bank statement date is when the transaction was finalised (or “cleared”) and the account transaction date is when the card transaction was performed.

If no match is suggested, one thing you can try is to complete entries that do match first and then refresh the page. If a transaction cannot be reconciled this way, it is an indication that something may be amiss and should be investigated – this is the very reason that reconciliation is performed.

We’re confident that Expend will help eliminate the mistakes that often slip in when doing expenses and accounts by hand, but if you encounter a problem, please contact our support team by clicking the chat button in the lower-right corner on the dashboard – we’ll always ready to help you sort out your expenses!

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