Kinda weird why it would be so hard, especially since FreeAgent gives you an API to upload files, and Open Banking API allows you to download feed as CSV/OIX. All they need to implement is a translations layer from Open Banking to FreeAgent upload format. I must be missing something.
Generally, when we (as users) think about these things, your statement above is pretty accurate!
So many things going on behind the scenes that affect the entire business, it’s never as simple as we think.
It’ll come when it’s ready, Starling are pushing out some neat integrations at a good pace.
FreeAgent has no concept of pending transactions for example, so for a real-time flow you’d have to add transactions to FA immediately but somehow keep track of them (more on this later) and delete them or add an opposite transaction to counterbalance it if the payment doesn’t end up collected.
There’s also no way to add an individual transaction using FreeAgent’s API, so you can’t easily reference a FreeAgent transaction. Best you can do is to iterate over them and infer which one it is based on the merchant name and amount, but this breaks if you have multiple transactions with the same name & amount.
Does Xero handle pending transactions?
I’ve just transferred £500 from Metro Bank Business to Starling then £497.60 as an international transfer to the US and the remaining £2.40 back to Starling.
Both the UK transactions are showing immediately in Xero but I still have a pending balance of £497.60 which means Xero hasn’t been presented with the international transaction yet.
Interestingly because Metro Bank only push transaction data to Xero once per day, even if I wanted to reconcile my accounts now I couldn’t actually do it because the transaction data is not showing in Metro Bank for me to reconcile.
However this delay might also have to with the fact I am currently in the US so in the UK I’ve just made the transaction at 00:36 in the morning.
Either way from what I can see, pending transactions don’t show in Xero and the the rest is instantly sync’d which is a major plus for Starling’s integration over other banks
I thought we would still have to login to FreeAgent and click Import Transactions? Or is it that with Xero/Starling integration , by “real-time”, we mean it’s instantly imported to Xero as soon as I make a business transaction? If that’s the case, I assume it will not be possible with FreeAgent like you said, since they do not support pending transactions via API. However I will be more than happy to click Import Transactions. I just do not want to wait for hours before the transactions appear in FA. Just instant import would be good for me. Which I could do via API hooks myself if need be.
So pending transactions don’t show at all in Xero for Starling? Do they show up automatically, or do you have to manually import them at a later date?
Just to clarify, I’m not a Xero user, but curious how they implement things like this.
I’d imagine that if everything is syncing instantly, the transactions would appear in Xero when they become confirmed
That’s what I would want to see, but as far as I can tell, there’s no webhook for a transaction state change, only when it happens or is reversed. So how this would work in real time, I’m not sure? Hence, I’m curious
Yep no web hooks for that. At the moment I’m just polling every hour or so.
But since Starling is building the integration themselves they’d be able to add such a web hook if necessary.
I agree with @Hatticus I think you’ll only see transactions that have been confirmed and strictly from an accounting perspective I think is completely normal. Your accounts are a record of what is, as opposed to what will be.
I can also confirm that the international transfer is now showing which makes me think the delay was because I sent it outside of banking hours and they didn’t process it until the morning
Here is the screen grab immediately after the transactions
Here is the screen grab from Xero this morning