Meryl Johnston launched Bean Ninjas in 2015 with a dream of changing the global bookkeeping game. Focusing on digital businesses within a few verticals (e-commerce, consultants, bloggers, and SaaS), Bean Ninjas has grown from Meryl’s kitchen table into the multinational, award-winning business it is today. Bean Ninjas has been working with BRHYTHMIC for three years, providing bookkeeping and advisory services that have enabled them to follow their passion.
Founded in 1998, BRHYTHMIC is a drum and percussion education centre with three locations in New South Wales, Australia. Owned and operated by Bron Harrison, BRHYTHMIC focuses on delivering quality, informative, and fun lessons to their school-age and adult students.
Collecting bank statements from clients is a necessary part of the monthly bookkeeping process. While cloud accounting platforms such as Xero provide up-to-date bank feeds, having a copy of the bank statement is still useful for quality assurance and ensuring there are no duplicate or missing transactions from the bank feed.
Bank statements can be difficult to collect, however. “Before preparing monthly reports for our clients, we cross reference the bank balance in Xero to a bank statement,” says Bean Ninjas Founder and Owner Meryl Johnston. “We found that statements were harder to collect consistently from clients each month because they require business owners to actually log in to their banks, hope the statement we need is available, download them, then send them across.”
This multi-touch process was not ideal for Bean Ninjas, as it required staff to spend time requesting statements and sending email reminders, which took approximately 15 minutes per client, per month. Across hundreds of clients, that added up to hours of time simply logging in and downloading!
From the client’s perspective, having to send monthly statements to Bean Ninjas was also a time-consuming and tedious task – particularly for BRHYTHMIC Founder and Owner Bron Harrison, who frequently travels and rarely works from one location.
The benefits of great client-firm relationships cannot be understated. When clients are happy, both businesses improve – clients will want to work with your firm more, and might even bring in referrals.
When Bean Ninjas adopted Hubdoc in 2018, improving client relationships was one of their goals, particularly with clients like BRHYTHMIC.
The key for Bean Ninjas was an easy solution that provided staff with the information and documentation required, when it was needed. Hubdoc, a data capture solution that automatically fetches bills and statements from hundreds of suppliers and banks, enabled Bean Ninjas to achieve this goal.
“With Hubdoc, my staff saved time and it was a better user experience for our clients,” says Meryl. “Previously, staff would need to send an email, check to see if they received the right statement, then go back to it a few times – there were a lot of document touches.”
Practices with 5+ clients on Hubdoc are automatically enrolled in Hubdoc’s Partner Program and work closely with a dedicated Customer Success Manager to ensure they’re getting the most out of Hubdoc.
“It feels like the Hubdoc team understands my business on real accounting and bookkeeping terms. We’re on the same page with what we’re trying to achieve, and I think that’s really important to get from a software company,” says Meryl.
Implementing automation tools can take a lot of careful planning, but when the results are positive, firms, staff, and clients all stand to benefit. “We introduced Hubdoc as part of a suite of software solutions at Bean Ninjas,” says Meryl. “So it’s difficult to attribute our improvements to any one program. What’s clear, however, is that as we have automated our services, we’ve seen several benefits: better client experiences, of course, but also the ability to scale the practice and introduce more valuable services.”
The results of Bean Ninjas’ strategic implementation of automated bookkeeping tools have helped them expand their client base globally and quickly become a Xero Gold Champion Partner.
Free of the challenges that come along with document collection, Bean Ninjas and Bron have been able to improve collaboration, enabling Bron to achieve several business and personal goals.
As a busy business owner and world-traveler, efficiency is key for Bron: “I’m always looking for ways to improve systematic and repetitive tasks. The more we can streamline those processes, the better for me.”
For this reason, when Bean Ninjas approached Bron about implementing Hubdoc, the concept was welcomed (and the results were positive).
Knowing that Bean Ninjas is committed to helping BRHYTHMIC achieve their goals and build an efficient working relationship makes it easy to accept new workflow changes and responsibilities.
“It’s a great thing when a bookkeeper comes to you and says, ‘Hey, we’re implementing this software as part of your subscription now’. For me, the time savings mean I can enjoy a pina colada on the beach!” jokes Bron. “In all honesty, when your advisor comes to you and suggests these tools will improve their workflow, take the leap! They do the research, and the result is more time to improve your business.”