Review and confirm the chart of accounts file import

Before you import a file containing your new chart of accounts into Xero you have a chance to review and confirm what you're importing. This summary screen shows you what will and won't be imported. You need to confirm the import before the accounts are saved into Xero, so if the import isn't working as you'd hoped, you can make changes to your original file and import it again.

You can only get to the confirm imported account screen as part of the chart of accounts import process started from Settings > Chart of Accounts. Only users with a Standard or Adviser user role can access the chart of accounts.

Import summary main

Review the accounts that were imported

When you import a chart of accounts it will essentially overwrite the chart of accounts already in Xero unless the new file contains the same accounts as those already in Xero. The summary will show you what's been successfully imported and not, or what's been successfully updated or not.

Summary box

The summary will tell you what will be included in the new chart of accounts:

  • The number of new accounts that will be created. If you have previously imported a chart of accounts, those that are classified as new are those that don't already exist in Xero e.g. if you update the code of an existing account, Xero will treat this as a new account.
  • The number of accounts that will be updated in the chart of accounts that already exists in Xero e.g. if you have changed the account name or description, Xero recognises that this is still the same as an account already in Xero and will just update the one already there.
  • Any accounts whether already existing in the chart of accounts or new that have a tax rate that is different to any already set up in Xero will be imported with a default rate of Tax Exempt (0%). You need to have a tax rate set up in Xero before you can import an account with that rate as its default. You edit the account once it's imported and change the tax rate as necessary.
  • If the chart of accounts you are importing doesn't contain the required Xero system accounts, these will be included in the new accounts created and can't be deleted.
  • Any bank accounts previously imported or existing in Xero won't be deleted during the import process.
  • If an existing account in your chart of accounts is 'locked' i.e. is a system account or is being used for a repeating transaction schedule this won't be replaced when a new chart of accounts is imported. The account in the file can be updated (i.e. have a new name or description) but if it has a new code it will be imported as a new account and the existing account will remain. You'll have to make the necessary changes in the chart of accounts if you don't actually want both accounts.

And what will be excluded from the new chart of accounts:

  • The number of accounts that won't be imported due to errors (e.g. duplicates, missing mandatory information).
  • If you're importing over the top of an existing chart of accounts, the number of accounts in that will be deleted or archived because the file you're importing now doesn't contain these accounts - either you've left the account out of the file or the code or account type number of an existing account has been changed in which case Xero will deem this to be a new account.

If you have already entered balances for your accounts, these will have to be updated if you import another chart of accounts.

  • If your accounts in Xero already have balances these existing accounts will either be updated or archived depending on whether the new chart of accounts causes the account to be updated or archived. You can still view archived accounts in Xero and if you don't want certain accounts archived you can restore them to the chart of accounts. You'll also need to update the account balances after importing a new chart of accounts.

Drill down into each summary item to see the accounts included or excluded by clicking on the 'View' link.

Review imported

Review any accounts that have errors and won't be imported

If errors or changes have occurred for the accounts you're importing these will be listed. You can choose to confirm the import without addressing any of these errors - these accounts will be ignored and not imported.

  • Click the View descriptions of all errors and changes link to see why the listed accounts were not imported.

Errors box

    • If the error is to an account that already exists in Xero, the existing account will remain unchanged when you confirm the import.
    • If the error is to a new account that you've included in your file, it will not be included when you confirm the import and will be missing from the new chart of accounts in Xero.
    • The errors will tell you why the account is being rejected from the import - things like duplicated accounts, account types that aren't recognised by Xero (whether due to misspelling or account types that you might have used in another accounting system that are not recognised by Xero) or missing mandatory account information.
    • You can either go back to your original file and change the accounts and re-import the file, or confirm the import without these accounts listed. If you ignore the errors, you can manually add the accounts from the chart of accounts.
    • Use the guidelines for importing Xero accounts to investigate and correct these errors and try the import again, or confirm the import and leave the erroneous accounts behind.
    • The line number in the 'Errors and changes' list tells you which line in your file to refer to if you want to go back and fix the error (note: Line 1 is the mandatory first line containing the Xero column headings).

    Line number

    Click Confirm. Your new chart of accounts in Xero will exclude those accounts listed in the summary as errors.

    Any accounts already in Xero that were not updated during the import process will be deleted or archived.