“BILL was the first piece of technology that our team adopted to solve a major problem. We immediately shifted all our customers’ payables to the cloud and were able to reinvest that time in other high-value tasks and services.”
Matthew Gardner, CEO and Co-Founder of hiline, explains how BILL’s time-saving tools have empowered his team to create a one-stop shop for all things accounting, taxes, HR & payroll for entrepreneurs and startups.
Tell us about your company.
What is now hiline evolved from Gardner & Capparelli CPAs in 2016. My co-founder, Jim Capparelli, and I had the goal of pushing the boundaries of what an accounting firm could become and a desire to meet our customers where they are. We developed hiline’s unique model to address the specific needs of startups and other small businesses by developing an entrepreneurial mindset that allows us to become better strategic partners for our customers. Leveraging the power of our stack of best-in-class cloud accounting technology and our dynamic team of dedicated professionals, we're providing our customers with access to the back-office firepower and guidance that their ambitions and aspirations call for.
How has Bill.com helped your business scale alongside your startup customers?
BILL has been integral to our success. We knew there had to be a better way than keeping our business rooted in paper by holding our customer’s check stock, scanning invoices and filing papers. When we implemented BILL, our customers, most of whom are extremely internet savvy, were quick to embrace the change. For many of our customers, moving from paper records to the cloud and the added bonus of real-time insights provided by BILL made the transition more than worthwhile. The real-time insights also increased the comfort level of many of our customers and reduced instances of micromanaging.
In our daily customer work, BILL’s features are essential to saving time, reducing errors, and improving efficiencies, allowing us to spend less time on mundane tasks and more time adding value in moments that matter to customers. The additional free time has enabled us to develop our subject matter expertise, allowing our staff to fully integrate into a customer’s team and act as a trusted advisor during tricky business situations.
How does BILL help you bring the back-office function into the future?
Too often, back offices are left to continue on the status quo and aren’t thinking about the next technology that could make their work more efficient and their lives easier. At hiline we think that back offices shouldn’t be a one-size-fits-all approach, so we utilize a unique stack of technologies for each customer, with BILL serving as an essential lynchpin for our operations. Particularly for our early-stage startup customers, where the finance “department” might only be one overwhelmed person, embracing new technologies is key for improving workflow and reducing time spent on mundane tasks. BILL creates a cloud-based paper trail with a wealth of information, including approval processes, payment history and more available instantly for each invoice.
We work closely with our customers to ensure that everyone’s time is being used in the most efficient way possible, allowing our customers to better reallocate resources for their needs. We meet our customers’ needs by offering future-focused accounting services with stronger forecasting and predictions to provide strategic counsel. Ultimately, BILL’s easy record keeping simplifies our daily tasks and lets us provide our customers with a better return on their investment with more real-time advice and actionable business strategies.
What advice would you give to accountants looking to develop an entrepreneurial mindset?
At the end of the day, you have to look in the mirror and assess the future of your company. Really ask yourself, and your employees, how should you as an agency be spending your time and what technologies can help you to do better work collectively. My personal mission is to disrupt the idea of what an accountant could and should be doing, encouraging hiline employees to not be chained to their desks all day. Rather, I want my team to be providing the best possible counsel to their customers and utilizing time saving technologies such as BILL to automate archaic accounting tasks and spend more time helping customers make an impact.
In order to continue growing, you have to be willing to take risks and try something new and different. At the end of the day, providing strategic advice in moments that matter is what sets hiline out from the competition and allows us to continue growing.