This November, we are extremely proud to have been awarded Xero’s app partner of the month. Not only is the app new to the Xero app marketplace, but Clarity is also new to the accounting tech world too. As a result, we thought the Xero community might like some ‘clarity’ on what the Clarity app actually is!
Day Zero to Day Xero
We launched the Clarity platform at AccountEx London on the 1st May 2019 (six months ahead of schedule), and in July 2019 gained app partner status within the Xero ecosystem. The time between day zero and day Xero for #TeamClarity has been a very fast and busy whirlwind, and we are extremely grateful for the support the Xero Dev team have given us in such a short space of time.
There are multiple benefits to being an app partner in Xero’s ecosystem. The technical support from behind the scenes is fantastic and has been a catalyst for our app to date. In addition, being part of such a buzzing eco-system of advisors, partners and apps is really important to us. We believe every accounting firm can benefit from the Clarity platform, and being able to tune into a tech focused, forward-thinking community of Xero advisors is crucial for our development and growth.
So, what is Clarity ?
Clarity is all about making business simple and helping small business owners build a better business for themselves, a better life for their family and team and ultimately contribute towards a better world.
There are 163 million registered SMEs around the world and in the UK alone, there are 5.7 million, representing 99.9% of all businesses. They employ 60% of all private sector employees and represent 52% of all private sector GDP. So small business is big business and their success vital to local and national economies. Small businesses create jobs and wealth, power tax revenue and build communities. However, their success rates are poor. In fact, only four out of 10 small businesses survive more than five years in the UK and only three out of 10 survive more than 10.
The world of business is incredibly complex, and is getting more so. Business owners are drowning in information and starving for knowledge. They also generally have a poor understanding of numbers, lack clear strategic plans and often struggle with cashflow management and access to cash and funding to grow.
We have built the Clarity platform to overcome these challenges and empower accountants, bookkeepers and advisers to unleash their inbuilt super powers and inherent abilities with numbers to drive small business growth and success.
How does it work?
Well, Clarity also makes business advisory simple! Our global, cloud-based platform provides accountants with the tools to better serve their small business clients. Linking in directly with Xero, accountants can help clients gain a clear understanding of their numbers and how to make them better, develop step-by-step action and business development plans to build a better business, and, through the use of our structured online data room, access the cash, funding and investment they need to grow and scale profitably.
To help accountants start the conversation with their clients, the Clarity platform introduces seven key numbers that every small business owner needs to understand. All seven key numbers are pulled in seamlessly through Xero:
- -Revenue Growth
- -Gross Profit Percentage
- -Operating Profit Percentage
- -Revenue Per Employee
- -Core Cash Target
- -Cash Conversion Cycle
- -Business Return
By showing small business owners the difference that small improvements in their seven key numbers can make to their profit and cash, accountants can highlight the potential within their business, leading to more valuable conversations.
And with the use of the Clarity platform, advisors can work collaboratively with their clients to simply develop action plans and hold them accountable, keeping them focused and drive their business forward.
Business Advisory is all about understanding your client, their issues, goals and needs – and delivering a whole suite of services to help solve their problems, help them make better decisions and help them get them to where they want to be. The seven key numbers from Clarity and Xero are the starting point for your business advisory services.
Those business advisory services encompass working with them to choose the right bookkeeping software and procedures, to understanding their numbers to cashflow forecasting, budgeting and planning to management reporting to helping with funding. But before you can delve in to the what, you need to understand the why. Where are your clients now, where do they want to go, what that gap is and how they are going to close or bridge it with your help. It’s about working with them to create a plan and then helping them achieve that plan. They need clarity.
Within the Clarity platform, we have also built a structured data room around the seven business assets:
- Brand and Culture
- Tangible Fixed Assets
- Legal & Governance
By using this framework, advisors can work through a structured process, encouraging their small business clients to put in place all the elements a successful business needs to have, not only to get access to cash and funding, but also to grow and become a more profitable business.
Where did the idea for Clarity come from?
The Clarity founders have always been passionate about small business and want to empower entrepreneurs to change the world.
The Clarity platform will help small businesses worldwide to create a bigger impact through more sustainable and profitable businesses. We know how business works because the founders have built and sold a number of our own multi award-winning niche business advisory accounting firms. We have a deep understanding of the challenges facing small business today, and we know what success looks like, what works and what doesn’t. As qualified chartered accountants we have advised thousands of entrepreneurs around the world and therefore understand that small business is BIG business, and that it can create a bigger impact.
We also know what technology is currently doing for accountants, and what it could do for small business. We understand small business owners, what they’re looking for from both technology and an advisor and why accountants aren’t currently delivering. The Clarity platform will bridge this gap, providing Xero accountants, advisors and bookkeepers with the tools to help small business owners drive success and growth, and power the global economy.
What is the vision for Clarity for the coming years?
Our long-term future vision for Clarity is huge. We want Clarity to become the global platform for small business owners worldwide.
However, in the short term, we are really focussed on empowering and enabling accountants to deliver business advisory services with ease.
In the accounting profession, we are often being preached about the move from compliance to advisory. But, at Clarity, we don’t believe compliance is dead. The key to success for accounting firms is adopting the skills for both compliance and advisory; combining business advisory services with existing compliance-based work will differentiate your firm and allow you to deliver better added-value services to clients, whilst simultaneously creating additional revenue streams.
Clarity allows accounting firms to cascade advisory down to the frontline troops really easily so that all members of the team are able to have an advisory conversation with confidence.
We understand that the top 20% of business owner clients for any accounting firm get the appropriate support from a business advisory perspective. This is delivered by the senior managers and partners within the firm. But this does leave 80% of small business owners who are just getting standard compliance services.
We want to make sure that an accounting firm can give every single business owner some level of business advisory, that is appropriate for both their size and the fee involved. Making business advisory accessible to small business through their trusted advisors worldwide.
How can you get involved with Clarity?
The founding team are going to be at #Xerocon London where we will be offering a special conference discount. Come and chat to #TeamClarity on stand B34 at Xerocon, or sign up for a demo and a 14 day free trial on www.clarity-hq.com. Information about the advisor partner programmes are also on our website, including the benefits and support you will receive at each level.