- Case Study -
The accounting firm specializing in serving insurance agencies had big growth goals—and an even bigger bookkeeping problem.
Club Capital Onboards 150 Clients to Botkeeper in 90 Days
With a fierce growth trajectory and a critical need for streamlined accurate data, Club Capital had to find a strategic partner to offload the labor-intensive bookkeeping process that was being handled manually through a coordinated effort of account managers and contractors. By implementing Botkeeper’s customizable platform and services, Club Capital has successfully onboarded 150 clients onto the Botkeeper platform in 90 days with the help of just 2 Club Capital account managers and a customer success manager. Now with Botkeeper as their partner, they have the bandwidth to focus on their advisory services, firm efficiencies, and reaching their goal of supporting 1,000+ clients by 2023.
Micah Cannon, Partner & Chief Operating Officer at Club Capital, had set out on a mission with his best friend to create a unique firm that would provide a new type of service to insurance agencies. Their vision was to provide financial analysis and bookkeeping that would include benchmarking. With astounding growth numbers, their small firm quickly realized it could not continue to sustain the hours and oversight needed to manage their contract bookkeepers.
"At Club Capital, we're all about implementing technology. 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."
Since incorporating Botkeeper’s platform and services into the Club Capital business model, the firm has been able to shift their focus to innovation, growth, and client engagement. Botkeeper’s strategic partnership has provided Club Capital with the additional human and technical capacity to be able to grow and scale their accounting firm; they now have the right platform with automation, the accuracy needed for proper benchmarking, and the highest level of financial oversight of all their clients’ bookkeeping from the Botkeeper team.
Clients successfully onboarded onto Botkeeper within 90-day period
Expected number of Club Capital clients with Botkeeper partnership by 2023
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 solutions 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.
Botkeeper, An Extension of the Club Capital Team
Now with Botkeeper, Club Capital feels the impact as their staff has more trust in their bookkeeping. They’re focused on their core services without having to worry about data inaccuracies or management oversight.
“I have been blown away at the organization and insight Botkeeper has brought to Club Capital. In addition to always hitting our month-end close by the 15th, they also successfully execute on daily deliverables.”
“Botkeeper has provided a level of management oversight on their side that ensures accurate bookkeeping and data that gives back time to the Club Capital staff to focus on our crucial financial analysis work and meeting with clients,” Micah said. “We are so impressed with the caliber and oversight of the Botkeeper team. All the processes are extremely organized, and we don’t have to worry about a thing.”
Club Capital is working hand-and-hand with their Growth Partner and feeling the synergy.
“We have regular weekly meetings with our Growth Partner Aaron, whom we feel is our direct counterpart on the Botkeeper side,” Micah said. “During these meetings, we cover the state of the union—everything from accounting questions to how Botkeeper can continue to create efficiencies for Club Capital. Botkeeper is absolutely an extension of the Club Capital team. They are another team that reports out. We are all sitting around the same table, with the same goals, talking about how they, as our bookkeeping manager, can customize efficiency for us with their service and technology.”
The Botkeeper Partnership Sparks New Value for Club Capital Clients
While the benefits of the Botkeeper partnership were felt internally, Club Capital also experienced the benefits to their clients with a custom-tailored service from Botkeeper that enabled them to be prepared for all client meetings.
“I have been blown away at the organization and insight Botkeeper has brought to Club Capital. In addition to always hitting our month-end close by the 15th, they also successfully execute on daily deliverables,” Micah said. “To make sure we prioritize clients' needs and their scheduled client meetings, we have created a shared calendar with Botkeeper to keep both of us in the loop. This allows Botkeeper to help Club Capital prepare for these meetings by ensuring the clients books are complete or any missing items are identified in advance of the meeting—the true definition of a partner. It honestly feels as if someone from Botkeeper is sitting at the next desk helping us prepare for each meeting.”
Botkeeper worked diligently with Club Capital on a pricing package that will keep them competitive in the market.
“Botkeeper has allowed us to work more on the strategic management level side, where we wanted to be spending our time. There is no way we could be the tech-focused innovative firm we want to be and reach our growth goals if we didn’t have Botkeeper.”
“Because of the competitive pricing, Club Capital is still able to offer competitive rates to our clients and prospects,” Micah said. “This was incredibly important to us since we didn’t want to introduce a new platform to our clients and then have to raise our prices.”
More importantly, Botkeeper offered Club Capital the ability to continue to provide an additional selling feature: a retention plan that puts clients' minds at ease.
“By bringing on Botkeeper, we now can continue with our retention selling feature for our clients,” Micah said. “We can tell our clients and prospects that the accounting platform we use can always be fully transitioned to them should their circumstances change with Club Capital. Longevity with the same bookkeeping solution is highly important to our clients, and this has helped us continue to provide a solution for their needs and win over competitors.”
Botkeeper Provides Club Capital Bandwidth to Expand
Club Capital is now able to focus on their long-term goal of being the number one firm for insurance agencies in the United States.
“With our Botkeeper partnership, Club Capital can now spend more time innovating and talking about our strategy to bring on more clients,” Micah said. “Botkeeper has allowed us to work more on the strategic management level side, where we wanted to be spending our time. There is no way we could be the tech-focused innovative firm we want to be and reach our growth goals if we didn’t have Botkeeper.”
As for the future, Botkeeper has helped put Club Capital on the path to scale.
“The trajectory for Club Capital is to take on 500 clients by 2021, and hopefully 1,000 clients by 2023,” Micah said. “We want to be the first Botkeeper partner to have 1,000 clients on the Botkeeper platform!"
Club Capital needed a sustainable partner to maintain our data quality and service our clients as we reach our growth goals, and Botkeeper is doing exactly that.”