Xero has partnered with U.S. and Canada-based Black professional groups to foster close collaboration with Black accountants, and to support Black-owned businesses. The move comes after a significant surge in public support for the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020 following the murder of George Floyd.
The AICPA Accounting Graduates Supply and Demand Report revealed a lack of diversity in the accounting profession — African-Americans accounted for 4 percent of new graduates hired into accounting or finance positions at CPA firms in 2018. The accounting software company has partnered with the National Association of Black Accountants to drive more awareness of Xero both as a cloud accounting platform and as an employer of choice in the United States.
Also through this partnership, Black Xero employees will have access to additional professional development and growth opportunities that NABA provides.
The accounting software company is also teaming up with the Oakland Black Business Fund, a Black-led investment platform that provides capital, technical assistance and growth strategy to Black-owned businesses in Oakland, California. Xero will offer OBBF’s small business and bookkeeping members in the Oakland-area access to its cloud accounting software, its educational resources and certification workshops with the goal of helping them get the most out of what Xero has to offer.
Xero also has its eyes on Canada, where Black Lives Matter activists are pressuring Canadian lawmakers to make good on promises of reform last year. The company has some efforts underway there with the Black Business and Professional Association, whicht delivers programs in support of business and professional excellence, higher education and economic development. Xero employees are mentoring BBPA members and participating in a finance and technology “master class” event for small businesses. Future plans include working with BBPA on its new Business Advisory Implementation and Development Services program aimed to train and expand the capabilities of Black entrepreneurs in Canada.
“As one of the founding leaders of the Black Xero Employee Resource Group, I couldn’t be more excited for these new partnerships and the chance to establish new relationships with Black professionals in communities across the United States and Canada,” said Michael Jones, who is also a senior account manager for Xero, in a blog post.
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