There are two verbs you might hear a lot in the fintech realm and especially the startup realm: "reinventing" and "tailoring." When you hear those words in a broad context, it can be hard to pin down what they mean exactly or how they'll impact our everyday lives. But, I have a clear picture of what both reinventing the fintech industry and tailoring a customers' experience looks like.
It means that brands and banks can partner together on one platform in days not months; it means that customers who have been left underserved by the financial industry can have access to the financial products that fit their lifestyle and their interests. When we think of reinvention, it means making an entire industry run smoothly. When we think of tailoring, it means delivering exactly what a customer wants, regardless of the roadblocks standing in the way. The ability to bring that type of tangible change is why I'm so excited to announce I’ve joined Bond as Head of Finance.
It's my responsibility to dive into the numbers and get a sense for the micro and macro movements that make a business tick. If there's an opportunity for a business to expand, it's the Head of Finance who would help lead the conversation on how to do just that. If there's an area where a business could pare down some of its spending, they would find it, too.
Naturally, it's hard for me to turn that impulse off. I love finding ways to do things more efficiently and help businesses succeed. In my career, I've seen first hand how using the inefficient tools can slow down a business' growth and tax teams' energy.
Giving Finance Teams The Tools They Need To Thrive
Previously working at a company as Vice President of Finance and Analytics, I often faced an endless waterfall of checklists. Checklists can gloss over inefficiencies that stand in the way of a better customer and company experience. If we neatly order arduous steps we have to take to get one financial system to speak to another, that process can feel orderly even when it's not.
On the surface, a checklist outlining the necessary actions and requirements to integrate with a new bank partner, payment processor or API highlights essential categories: compliance, engineering architecture and internal operations. But, just beneath the surface, there's a world of repetitious and unnecessarily complex work that feels like it doesn't quite fit in the world of finance today.
Building A Better Foundation For Finance Teams
Finance and Accounting teams must develop and maintain a foundation on which their company can serve an increasing number of clients and navigate their future. Without scalable, streamlined financial systems in place, it can be hard to grow. I've experienced this first hand.
As Head of Finance and the first finance hire at a young company, I had to build the entire finance function from scratch. I was trying to cover all the bases including creating the first financial projections, hiring team members, meeting investors and clients’ financial requirements, setting up a new ERP system and even walking to a bank to set up FBO accounts for clients. The work I did on my own was less than streamlined, but it was necessary at the time.
So, that meant if there was an issue with the credit card attached to our AWS account that might result in suspension of our server, I would call in, fix it and make sure the business can run smoothly — even if I was on vacation. After a few calls like this, I knew that I had to build out a much more robust finance function, one that could withstand even I am not there to execute.
After a few trying months, I had a proverbial clean slate. I had the platform I needed to build a more productive finance system and, more importantly, I had the support I needed to build a team. Soon after hiring my team, we passed a critical audit, developed and rolled out new accounting best practices and built a department-level budget. The experience underscored to me how impactful a well-equipped finance team can be to a business. That's why I'm so excited to join Bond.
The Future with Bond
We shouldn't have to spend countless months integrating with various financial systems. We should focus on what we’re best at — serving our customers.
At Bond, we're experts in not only compliance but integration and engineering. That means we can act as the bridge and do the heavy lifting in the middle between banks and brands, as opposed to making the two parties build that bridge themselves.
Using Bond, banks and brands can integrate once quickly, partner, and stay up and running forever. That seems like a more efficient way of doing things to me.
I'm incredibly excited to not only join the Bond team but to help build the Bond team, as well. Some of the most meaningful experiences I've had in my career are growing finance teams from the ground up and guiding their success. It's one thing to celebrate your own accomplishments, but it's even more impactful to see a team you helped nurture accomplish something great themselves and I can't wait to see what our team accomplishes!