Call Us: +44 (0)1748 473000

Call Us Facebook Twitter Pinterest Linked in Instagram Youtube GooglePlus

Find out how to get 2 hours free training by referring a friend? 
What's the catch?
Articles Categories Screencasts

How to use the Xero integration with OpenCRM

Updated: 30 January 2017 14:49:41 OpenCRM::Invoice

NOTE: OpenCRM's integration with Xero is currently in closed beta testing. If this is something you are interested in using, please contact your account manager for more information.


The Xero settings page contains a link to the Xero page you need to go to to set up the Xero app. Currently only Public authentication is supported although the feature was originally written for private key authentication which means the process can be automated.
Note : Once this private key authentication is approved by Xero, automated invoice creation and balance updating will happen without user input.

To enter your Xero details, go to Settings > Configuration and scroll down until you see the Xero Settings option. Clicking this link will give you the below page. Tick the Enable Integration box and Save.

You can also access the Xero access screen from the Invoice module by clicking on the Connect to Xero button:

Clicking Connect to Xero will take you to a Xero login page where you can then authorise your OpenCRM system to connect to Xero.

Once you authorise Xero to connect to OpenCRM, the page will refresh and you will find yourself back in OpenCRM with the consumer key and secret fields populated. This will turn on the connection. That connection will remain active for approx 30 minutes and is available to all users of the system in that time (each user does not need to connect each time).

Each time you enter the settings page, the saved connection is cleared and you will need to click Connect to Xero to reactivate the connection.

Tax table / rates can be associated with tax rates in Xero via the Settings page in OpenCRM, please see this FAQ for more information:

There is a background poll which can automatically send and update invoices to/from Xero but this will only work while the connection is valid. The connection expires every 30 minutes (approx), so it is actually quite unlikely this will be useful at the moment. 

Importing Client Data from Xero into OpenCRM

If you have been using Xero prior to integrating with OpenCRM, you will need to run an import or an update import, in order to get the Xero Reference field populated on the Company record in OpenCRM. If you do not do this, you will be creating duplicate client records in Xero and invoices from OpenCRM will be linked to a new Contact record in Xero instead of the existing client.

 The Xero Reference field is the unique identifier that is used to match up records in OpenCRM with existing data in Xero. This reference is not available on a standard Xero export or report, so you will need to use the tool built into the Xero Settings page, as per the screenshot below:

This will create a csv file that looks like this:

Importing New Client Data into OpenCRM

If your client data is present in Xero, but not present in OpenCRM, then you can carry out an import, to create new Company records in OpenCRM. Click on the link from the screenshot above. This will perform an export of your client data held in Xero. They key columns to note are ContactID (= Xero Reference) and Name (Company Name).

As well as this key information the export provides details such as a Contact person, email address, telephone and address details. The export also provides numerous columns of information exported from Xero that you are not likely to need in OpenCRM e.g. "AccountsReceiveableTaxType" or "BankAccountDetails".

1. You need to decide which columns you wish to import. You may need to create custom fields for non-standard information, in which case please refer to this guide on how to create custom fields in OpenCRM:

2. Formatting the address columns in Xero to match the formatting in OpenCRM. Typically, you will want to import the address details into the fields Billing Address Street/ Billing Address City/ Billing Address State/ Billing Address Postcode/ Billing Address Country. So, you will need to concatenate AddressLine1 and AddressLine2 into one field, to populate the Billing Address Street field in OpenCRM. Also you may wish to duplicate all the address fields, so that you can also import them to the Shipping Address fields in OpenCRM. See this FAQ for details on how to concatenate two (or more) fields in Excel:

3. Formatting telephone numbers to import into OpenCRM. In the Xero export, the phone numbers are split into separate columns for phone number/ area code/ country code, so you will need to concatenate the columns as per with addresses. Also, csv strips out formatting so numbers are likely to be missing leading zeros ie "0221" will display as "221". This FAQ explains how to restore and leading zeros that may be missing:

4. Once you have formatted the data, you can proceed with the Import. You will need to import the Company details into the Companies module, and if you want to add the Contact details, you should import this to the Contacts module. Go to the relevant module and select the Import option

The key fields to map are the Xero Reference and Account Name. You can map the other fields as described above. once you have finished, select Import Now at the bottom of the import screen and that will launch the import and create the Companies in OpenCRM.

5. You can repeat the process to import into the Contacts module, and create Contacts that will be linked to the Company.

Updating Existing Client Data in OpenCRM with Xero information

The procedure for carrying out an update import is very similar to doing a new import - you pick the columns you wish to bring into OpenCRM. The difference is that at the bottom of the Import screen you select the option to Update Existing Records before hitting Import Now.

For OpenCRM to know which record to update, you need to add a column to the spreadsheet, containing the CRM ID from the matching record in OpenCRM. You can use the VLOOKUP function in Excel to match the Xero Reference to the correct company. You should be OK with using the Company Name as the identifier to match up records however if you have more than one Company with the same name you will need a more sophisticated solution (e.g. using the Company Name and Postcode as the unique identifier). This FAQ explains how to use VLOOKUP:

Once you have matched up the Company with the relevant CRM ID, map the fields you want to update in OpenCRM. The key fields to map are the CRM ID field, as this is the look-up field that will be used to update the relevant record, and the Xero Reference, or ContactID field, which is the identifier that will be used to look up the correct Company record in Xero.


On Invoice home screen, there are two buttons - "Send to Xero" and "Update From Xero". These buttons are only visible if integration is enabled, and the current connection has not expired.

If it has expired, a button "Connect to Xero" is displayed which takes you to the settings screen.

Send to Xero

This button will send selected invoices (and associated company details) to Xero. It will send all invoices even if they have already been sent to Xero, so long as the outstanding balance matches the total amount. As soon as the outstanding balance is below the total amount (i.e. payments have been made in Xero), the invoice is no longer sent to Xero. The invoice status is ignored, so this will send Pending and Paid invoices so long as the outstanding and total balance matches 

Update From Xero

This button will update selected invoice balances from Xero, and update associated companies with their Xero reference. It will NOT update company balances. It will only get updates for invoices not marked as Paid or cancelled and where the "Sent to Accounts" field is checked. 

Once an Invoice has been updated from Xero, the status will be updated from Created to Live. The Invoice will also be marked as having been Sent to Accounts, with the Date on which it was sent.

Once Payments (in Xero) have been logged, these will be reflected in OpenCRM if the Update from Xero option is selected. It will show part-payments and full payments, updating the status to either "Part Paid" or "Paid", and the Amount Outstanding field will be adjusted accordingly.

Other Options

In the tools section, there are links to send all live invoices (that is all invoices where the outstanding amount is equal to the due amount),and update all live invoices (all invoices not marked as Paid and which have previously been sent to Xero).

Send All Live Invoices

Sends all invoices where the outstanding amount is equal to the due amount, and the status is not Paid or Pending

Update all Invoice Balances

This will go through all invoices not marked as Paid or Cancelled and which have previously been sent to Xero and query Xero for an updated balance. It will update associated companies with their reference in Xero. Additionally, at the end it will update all company balances following the invoice update. This could take some time to complete, during which time your OpenCRM session on that browser will be locked and unusuable. 

Logging / Error Checking

* In order to create an Invoice in Xero, the sync will first add the Products. This is so it can link any existing or new Products to the Invoices in Xero. If there is a problem with any Product row, this will not send any invoices, until the error has been corrected. An error message will be displayed which outlines the problem Product(s).

* When sending multiple invoices, if 2 invoices send successfully and one fails, the 2 which are sent successfully will be marked sent to sage.

* A separate log table "xero_log" is updated on any successful attempt to send the invoice and any errors are logged in here too.


Important Notes and Info

* Invoices and credit notes sent currently go into the "Drafts" section in Xero where they can then be approved.

* OpenCRM's integration with Xero allows you to create a new Client record, with a Primary Person linked (first name, last name, email address). If you sync a subsequent invoice for the same client, but with a different Person linked, it will not add a second Person, but will overwrite the first Person.

* Finance and System admins only are able to access the Xero settings page and send invoices to Xero or update balances from Xero.

* Line amounts are passed through as the full undiscounted amount. The discount rate is calculated to a percentage per line and passed through to Xero which then calculates the actual line total.

* Credit notes are transferred with list prices as the discounted amount because Xero does not support discount on credit notes.

* Update of balances on credit notes is not yet supported.

Rate This Article
  • 1 star
  • 2 star
  • 3 star
  • 4 star
  • 5 star
Feedback and Comments
captcha code  

You may also be interested in:


Twitter Feed

OpenCRM #Cloud tech gives you the opportunity to hire from anywhere, but how do you #manage teams in so many places?


Software Add-ons Ltd
1 Battalion Court
Colburn Business Park
North Yorkshire
United Kingdom
+44 (0)1748 473000
+44 (0)870 125 5962
Reg #:
England & Wales 05387424

marker Find on Google Maps


Business Efficiency –…

One of the main purposes of using a CRM is to promote your business efficiency – let you concentrate on running your business whilst the CRM takes care of processes and data management. Because of this, we are mindful that shortcuts and ease of use are keys to a successful CRM implementation and as a result we are always developing enhancements here and there to make the user experience that much slicker. As we prepare to launch the latest updates to...

Avoiding Holiday Chao…

Year end is here, hooray, you made it! But along with all the reporting and financial fun (not) that you have to tackle at this time of the year, there’s one more job that needs to be managed: the holiday rush. No, that the Christmas holiday rush, but the one where everyone suddenly remembers that they have a few days of holiday to use up and are desperate to organise “just a few days off.” In the last month of the financial year…and...

Being Part of the Com…

This can be a very difficult balance, do you do this just to gain some recognition or is a genuine effort to add something to your community or the place where you work? My son came to me recently as a coach of an under 8’s football team and asked if we would like to sponsor the kids with a new strip. After a short conversation, we decided that we would be delighted to and it would be a great thing...

Cloud Perspectives – …

Cloud storage is a big step towards streamlining your business. It allows you to store your client details and other information in a manner that is accessible from anywhere, at any time. You can build up a great web of data by interlinking Companies and Contacts with all manner of actions, sales details and support requests, helping you build a complete customer profile. Just like those clients, your own business is not a static entity - you are constantly evolving. Staff...

Having the Right Pers…

It is a common pitfall, especially in the tech industry, to assume that known tasks are therefore easy tasks. That just because you know how to do something (and that everyone in your office knows how to do the same thing), it is actually common knowledge. What do I mean by this? Let me give you an example: I was recently having a conversation with one of our developers about a new piece of software I wanted to introduce and had been...

An Alternative Use of…

Every business has a reason to have a CRM solution. It doesn’t mean that every company will have one or that every company will use them in the same way. Often, different people in the same company will use their CRM differently because they have different reasons for needing one. This means that every CRM solution out there needs to be flexible enough to meet a wide variety of business needs, some simple and others complex. Over the last 12 years, we’ve...

Getting Back To Basic…

Is Nostalgia Making A Comeback? I was surprised to hear that a Finnish manufacturer is set to release a revamped version of the classic Nokia 3310 phone. Although it has been out of circulation for the past 12 years, many people will remember this phone fondly and if you compare its solid build and long-lasting battery life with the phones of today then perhaps that’s not just for nostalgic reasons. The 3310 was a significant step on the journey of innovation and...