Integrating with Xero Payroll

Setting up the connection with Xero

Once you have specified Xero as the payroll you wish to integrate with, you will need to take the following steps to connect HR Partner with Xero:

1. Click on the "Employees" menu on the left.

2. Click on "Import".

3. Click on "Integration".

4. Click on the blue "Connect To Xero" button on the right hand side.

This will take you to the Xero site where you will have to enter in your Xero login details, and choose the company that you wish to integrate with HR Partner.  (Note: You will have to use your Xero login at this point, not your HR Partner login).

Once you have completed this step, you will be brought back to HR Partner's main dashboard again, and your employees will be imported in the background.


The refresh of your employee data runs in the background, and will remain active until you disconnect the two systems.  It can take several minutes for the initial refresh to run (depending on the number of employees you have), so please be patient.

What if we have employees outside of Xero or in multiple Xero entities?

Some companies may have employees under different entities within Xero, or even a combination of employees within Xero and outside of Xero. Neither of these is an issue.

If you have multiple entities within Xero, it is simply a matter of clicking on the 'Connect to Xero' button as many times as needed, then signing on to Xero and selecting the appropriate company. HR Partner will automatically keep an identifier in the backend of the system so it knows which Xero company each employee belongs to when syncing data moving forward. 

If you have employees outside of Xero, you can choose to either bulk upload them with a CSV file or upload them individually. You can read more about uploading employees into HR Partner here.

Connection options

Once the connection to Xero has been made, there are a couple of other options that you can activate by going to the save Integration screen above.  If you revisit this screen after you have made a connection, you will see the following options:

The options are explained here:

Push any approved leave requests from HR Partner to Xero - By ticking this box, any of your employee leave requests that have been Approved by an Admin user in HR Partner will be sent back to Xero.  This will make payroll entry a lot easier for your payroll team, as the leave dates and type will be ready to incorporate into the next pay run (or future pay run depending on the leave timeframe).

Don't sync employee middle names (Xero Australia Payroll only) - You have the option to omit the employee's middle names from the data brought across from Xero.  The Australian payroll system has the employee names broken down into first, middle and last names, and by default, the sync will concatenate all three together.  You may not want that and you may only want the first and last names, in which case you can tick this box to leave off the middle names. This only applies to Australian Payroll systems.

Default Statutory Sick Leave (Xero UK Payroll only) - You need to select the specific statutory leave type that applies to any sick leave requests that your employees may choose. Whilst HR Partner will give you just the single leave type called 'Sick, you will need to map this to one of the multiple Statutory leave types that are preset in your Xero system. This only applies to UK Payroll systems.

Remember to hit the "Save" button after making changes here. You can turn these options on or off at any time without impacting the connection.

Disconnecting from Xero

As mentioned before, the connection to Xero will constantly run in the background until you choose to disconnect it.  To disconnect from Xero, simply go to the same Integration screen as above, and click the red 'Disconnect From Xero' button.  This will only take one second, but after this, your employee information will no longer be synced between Xero and HR Partner (however it will remain in HR Partner).

At any time, you can re-establish the connection with Xero again, and the system will continue syncing your information between the two platforms.

Manually refreshing data from Xero

Even though the automatic refresh between the two systems runs in the background every few hours, sometimes you may want to manually refresh the information from Xero into HR Partner.  For instance, you may add a couple of new employee in Xero and need to start data entry in HR Partner immediately and cannot wait for the auto refresh to run (which can take up to 6 hours).

In these instances, you can kick off a manual refresh by going to the main dashboard in your HR Partner company and clicking the little refresh icon on the information box that show you the last refresh time:


Do not run a manual refresh more than once or twice a day.  The process is very resource intensive on our servers, and can impact performance for other customers.  If we detect that too many refreshes are being run on your company, we may disconnect your integration or remove your ability to refresh altogether without notice.

Pushing Leave to Xero

Our Xero integration sends the information about approved leave across to Xero to eliminate double entry of data. If you prefer, you can turn this option on or off by selecting the checkbox in the integration configuration screen (as described above). In order for leave to be pushed to Xero, the following process must be observed:

  • The employee enters a leave request in their Employee Portal
  • The request is approved by an admin
  • The approved leave entry is then pushed across to Xero immediately (without waiting for the twice daily background refresh routine)

It is important to remember that:

  • The leave entry must be entered in the Employee portal and approved to be sent to Xero
  • Leave/Absence records entered manually under the employee tab in the admin area will not be sent across to Xero
  • Deletion or modification to existing leave requests that have been previously approved and sent to Xero will not update the information already sent to Xero. Once the approved leave is sent to Xero, we cannot access it to modify or delete it accordingly.

Some tips for best results syncing leave between HR Partner and Xero:

  • You must set up your public holiday dates in Xero to match the public holiday dates in HR Partner
  • You must set up the Working Day Templates in HR Partner to match the weekly working days/hours for your employees in Xero
  • You must set up the statutory leave category to match you payroll (Xero UK customers only)


The Timesheet and Expense modules in HR Partner are not currently integrated with Xero. However, information held in each of these modules can be exported from HR Partner as CSV files. 

As outlined throughout this article our Xero integration is purely a payroll integration (which includes leave). Employee data is fed from Xero to HR Partner. This means that changes made to employee data in HR Partner will not be carried over to Xero, but changes made in Xero will be carried into HR Partner. Leave requests which have been approved in HR Partner WILL be sent into Xero and the updated Leave balances will be sent from Xero to HR Partner.