Some businesses start out with a clear path and strategy. Others have to make adjustments along the way. Financial startup inDinero fits into that latter category. But the company’s leadership feels that it is better off as a result.
InDinero started off as a “Mint.com for business.” But as time went on, the company’s customers made it clear that they wanted more services. So the company adapted and now it has become more of an all inclusive accounting, payroll and tax service. Read more about the business and the changes it has gone through in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.
What the Business Does
Provides accounting, payroll and tax services for businesses.
For a flat fee, which is based on size and services required, businesses receive unlimited customer service along with an online platform to manage various aspects of their finances.
Jessica Mah, CEO and founder of inDinero.com, says:
“We’re the ideal virtual CFO/back office for the growing startup or small business with between 2 and 100 employees.”
Dealing directly with customers.
The company prides itself on having software that is easy to use. And the call center is made up of financial experts like CPAs, CFOs, and tax professionals. It was because of that direct link with customers that inDinero went from being a single-purpose service to a more all-in-one offering. Mah explains:
“Our customers wanted more from us. They were saying, ‘Hey, since you have all of our accounting/financials squared away, can you do our taxes while you are at it, and also handle our payroll as well?’ And we will pay you more for those services. The writing was on the wall, so we’re taking advantage of our customers’ feedback.”
How the Business Got Started
In a dorm room.
Mah came up with the idea for inDinero in her dorm room at the University of California Berkeley. Then she launched the business out of Y Combinator.
Having the courage to pivot the business model.
“Charging $20 per month was not the road to making a profit and building the business. The biggest win was having the guts to scrap the business model and pivot the business — based off of customer feedback — give them the additional services they want — accounting/tax/payroll — and they’d be happy to pay more for all of that.”
Hire only the best people.
“I’ve rushed a few hires in my past and regretted that, but I’ve also made some incredible hires by taking my time and being a little more patient. If I don’t think a candidate has a chance of being a future leader in the company, we probably won’t hire them.”
How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000
General business growth.
“Over the next 18 months, we’re opening offices in Portland and New York, so slowly over time we’d use the $100,000 for growing/hiring in those locations.”
Favorite Team Tradition
An annual wine tasting trip to celebrate the end of tax season.
If the Business Were a Movie
Back to the Future.
“We are bringing technology and innovation to the decrepitly ancient and slow-moving accounting industry.”
“Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.” – Warren Buffet.
“This describes how we feel every time we describe our product and service to potential customers. It’s also how I talk about the company when discussing it with investors.”
* * * * *
Find out more about the Small Biz Spotlight program.