Big Growth Goals Emphasized Club Capital’s Need for a Better Bookkeeping Solution
Club Capital is an accounting and analytics firm with a staff of 15, focused on providing financial insights, bookkeeping, and renowned industry benchmarking. Their service includes constructing a solid financial infrastructure to a very niche market: insurance agencies. The firm, established in 2016, is built on a foundation of standardization and templatization for all of their processes. Their clients are hand-selected to ensure that with the addition of each new client, they’re continuing to enrich their data set for the highest standard benchmarking. Their office is located in Bethesda, MD, where they serve insurance agencies throughout the country.
Watching their growth increase 200% year-over-year since starting the firm, Micah realized that he needed to find a longer-term, maintainable solution for their bookkeeping needs. They had been using contract help for the 50,000+ monthly transactions they were categorizing and the monthly close process, but it was not proving to be a sustainable solution. A combination of the necessary management oversight and the mistakes being made by manual entry were taking up staff’s valuable time. Since Club Capital’s 300+ clients were incredibly similar, Micah wanted to find a solution that could help him establish standard bookkeeping procedures and flawless back-end data to power the financial analytical tools his staff relied on.
"We made it one of our goals to look into investing in both automation and efficiencies, even if it meant taking a financial hit today so we were better situated for the future. Botkeeper had been on our radar for a while."
“Given how data-driven our firm is and the need for continuous analytical evaluation for benchmarking, Club Capital has always wanted to make sure our higher-level account managers and advisors kept their focus on the data,” Micah said. “This is the core of our service offering and where we deliver exceptional value to our clients. In order to produce the type of reports and benchmarking that our clients want to see, we need perfectly accurate bookkeeping on the back-end. We were using contract help for revenue recognition, but we were spending more time managing and overseeing than we wanted to, and there was no addition of technology to help with the process. Everything was being done manually. Plus, the contract help was not able to identify missing items needed to close the books each month or provide portfolio level metrics of completion or client status that could be used by Club Capital account managers.”
Micah wanted to add a technology solution to Club Capital that would keep his firm modern and innovative. He knew what the power of automation could do for his current bookkeeping process.
“At Club Capital, we're all about implementing technology,” Micah said. “We always want to be a step ahead of where the industry is going. We saw the industry moving toward what Botkeeper is doing—automating bookkeeping—and we knew this would be crucial to our long-term success. In 2020, we made it one of our goals to look into investing in both automation and efficiencies, even if it meant taking a financial hit today so we were better situated for the future. Botkeeper had been on our radar for a while.”
Botkeeper Passes Competitors with Flying Colors
To satisfy their 2020 goal, Micah decided to explore which companies were excelling in offering an automated bookkeeping solution. He evaluated Botkeeper, ScaleFactor, and KPMG Spark. He quickly recognized that ScaleFactor and KPMG were not the right solution for Club Capital.
“We started our evaluation process based on who we thought was doing automated bookkeeping right in the industry,” Micah said. “We narrowed it down to ScaleFactor, KPMG Spark, and of course, Botkeeper. KPMG Spark’s model revolved around using their own in-house full accounting solution— they didn't utilize small business tech. ScaleFactor almost felt like it was competing against our own business model directly. Both solutions weren’t providing support or an easy blend into our existing processes. They required us to use their technology, which allowed for far fewer integration points. We would have to change our entire billing process. Most importantly, we realized if we went with ScaleFactor or KPMG Spark, if one of our clients were to leave our firm, we weren’t able to transfer these accounting platforms to them.”
After learning about Botkeeper from industry newsletters and signing up for the Botkeeper Blog
, Micah soon realized that Botkeeper might be the solution Club Capital needed.
“I actively had Botkeeper on my radar for quite some time from seeing them in industry newsletters and also joining their blog,” Micah said. “We were using Xero for our clients, which Botkeeper didn’t originally support when we first engaged in conversation. As I started talking with Botkeeper this time around about our needs, it became apparent that Botkeeper could satisfy them with flying colors. Their custom-branded platform would allow us to use our own branding. We could integrate Gusto and Xero, software we were using with our clients, into the Botkeeper platform seamlessly. Technology would be injected into our bookkeeping process, and my staff would not have to be heavily involved. We could rely on the Botkeeper data for nearly perfect accuracy with their use of automation. Month-end close would be a breeze. We would get a dedicated Growth Partner to meet with weekly. Botkeeper was all about innovation and partnering with us on ideas and concepts to make their platform better. It just seemed like the right solution for us.”
Micah was quickly able to see how he could check off Club Capital’s automation and efficiency goals for 2020 by becoming a Botkeeper partner.
150 Clients Onboarded to Botkeeper in 90 Days
The realities of injecting automation and more efficiencies into Club Capital’s processes were coming to fruition as Micah and his team joined Botkeeper in what he described as a “model partnership onboarding process.”
"As I started talking with Botkeeper about our needs, it became apparent that Botkeeper could satisfy them with flying colors. Their custom-branded platform would allow us to use our own branding."
“Botkeeper took the time to understand our specific, unique firm needs,” Micah said. “They put together a package that made sense for us and our business. They found a way to fit into our model and not us fit into theirs. Everyone at Botkeeper was a pleasure to work with during the sales process. It felt like Club Capital was working with a partner because nothing felt transactional.”
With a Botkeeper partnership in place, Club Capital began deploying their clients on to the Botkeeper platform. The similarities amongst their clients made for the establishment of an efficient standard deployment process on Botkeeper.
“The deployment process really started to become like clockwork after we got our first few clients up and running,” Micah said. “The portal for the client would be activated by Botkeeper. We would connect the client’s bank accounts and upload any relevant documents. We then told our clients to upload documents on the portal instead of where they upload them before. We could toggle off functionality and provide the client exactly the portal they needed. It was a seamless transition onto Botkeeper for both Club Capital and our clients.”
With the help of just 2 of Club Capital’s accountant managers and a customer success manager, they were able to successfully onboard 150 of their clients onto the Botkeeper platform seamlessly in under 90 days. They’ve made the commitment to onboard their next 100 clients in the coming weeks.