2020 has been a big year for a lot of reasons. Here at Helm, it has been a huge year of adding new features and progressing our product in a direction that is completely different than any other. And here we are closing in on the year’s end, with a monster of a feature release and partnership announcement: Helm’s native integration with Veem.
We couldn’t be more proud of our team and all the effort they have put in. While they see it as simply being focussed on their work, we know that they have had a big hand in creating an amazing tool. One that will help change the way accounting is being done, and one that will genuinely help bookkeeping and accounting professionals and their clients.
We’re Not Just a Fancy Graph
We talk about this quite a bit at Helm. One of our original Beta testers William Lopez, Head of Accountant Community at Gusto, champion in our industry and general awesome person, had a succinct summary for most cash flow forecasting tools: they are just fancy graphs.
This comment was a polarizing point for our fledgling company. A lightning rod so to speak. How could we not fall into that trap? How could we be exactly the opposite? It was our goal from that day forward: not to be just a fancy graph, but a tool that would tangibly help save time and effort, and empower professionals to help guide the businesses they work with.
And this is the number one reason we love our integration with Veem. It brings this initial vision to fruition. Helm is a tool that allows users to create beautiful, highly visual cash plans quickly and easily, and now with the simple click of a button Helm also carries out that plan.
Reporting tools can’t process today’s cheque run. Neither can spreadsheets.
And that’s pretty cool.
The Potential Applications
Cool factor aside, we are truly excited about the potential applications for this marriage of technology. We have been secretly testing the integration out for weeks now and have found it does amazingly well with:
We can provide fiscal certainty for the next few months to our clients in 30 minutes or less. We can provide our cash plans visually (i.e. online in the system - which does seem to be the preferred method so far for all Helm users) or in hard copy report format. With approval we can then carry out that plan with a click of a button.
This establishes a firm controllership process with our clients, creating engagement and dialogue, which builds up our trust and value. And while this relationship existed before in our own bookkeeping and accounting firm, Helm has now made this process much faster and more seamless. We can now offer controller level functions with ease and at greater scale.
Related to the above point we can now quickly map out a small business’ cash position in Helm prior to any scheduled payment run. With this information we have certainty around exactly what bills can be paid without affecting the company’s overall working capital targets (aka. how much money they want to keep in the bank now and in the future).
While bill pay services aren’t anything new (we ourselves have used a number of amazing apps that are in this market), having a low touch way of providing this service is. Previously you would have had to use multiple apps and processes to carry out this service line. Now with Helm and its Veem integration, we are able to offer the same frictionless bill pay services to our clients, but with much lower cost and effort on our side.
Ongoing Stress Testing
A large number of our users run multiple cash plan scenarios on an ongoing basis. At any point in time they can see where they are at today, and where they might be in the future depending upon a multitude of factors.
With our new Veem integration there is now no need to hop into another system to adjust AP or spending plans based on this information. As with any “cheque run” in Helm (or “check run” depending upon where you live), you just simply click a few buttons and you’re done!
The Advent of Cash Management
While the above list is not exhaustive, these are real world situations where our clients have loved using Helm so far. And there is a common theme here: cash management.
This is one aspect of how Helm has progressed that really excites us. With our Veem integration we are truly unique, being the only app to offer native cash management automations to the small business market. If you’ve followed our journey since we started two short years ago, you now know why we have been using hashtags like #cashmanagement and #cashplanning much more so than others.
As everyone knows, running a business isn’t just about forecasting your cash position, it’s about actually acting on that forecast. And sometimes this is much easier said than done.
Because cash management is a labour of love. It is about constantly and frequently pushing and pulling multiple business levers. Timing payables and receivables, taking and making partial payments, scheduling capital and financing payments. All of which can change in timing for any of a large number of reasons.
This makes cash management hard. Not because of the math behind it, but because It is dynamic, constantly changing and needs to be actively managed.
As alluded to in several spots in this post, having a cash planning tool like Helm that carries out basic business functions is a god send. Not just because it eliminates a lot of tedious work, but more so because it allows you to focus your efforts and spend all of your time where it matters. On the planning.
No other tool in the market can do that.
Why We Chose Veem
I know the marketing wizards over at Veem will chime in on this announcement with their official stance. But we can tell you that our relationship with Veem has been long standing. Even prior to building Helm we were familiar with their amazing product and staff.
What we love about Veem is that their visions are aligned with ours. They are focussed on making the lives of small business owners and accounting professionals as easy and simple as they can be.
That, combined with their existing feature set and future product roadmap, made them an easy team to form a strategic partnership with. Where it would have taken us years, a lot of trial and error, and many, many millions of dollars, we can now instantly offer through Helm:
- Low friction, low cost domestic business payments
- Free international transfers (to be integrated soon!)
- Top level security
- Seamless payment tracking
And did we mention that their customer support is amazing?
Why Veem Chose Us
We let Patrick Cameron from Veem give us his words:
“The long standing relationship between Veem and Helm is driven by our shared core values. We both want to simplify the lives of business owners while providing them with high impact tools to benefit their day-to-day operations.
Helm’s mission is to provide businesses with insight and foresight into their operations. Adding the capability to execute on that information directly within Helm aligns perfectly with Veem’s core ability to simplify business processes. When this partnership was formulated with Veem, it was simply a ‘no-brainer’.”
The Brass Tacks (or is that tax?)
Cash management is the lifeblood of all business. COVID-19 is a stark reminder of this. No matter how big or small your business is, your near term cash position is the single most important measure of your business. Without cash to pay the bills, your profits, margins and EBITDA growth don’t matter.
Cash management is not:
- A three to five year forecast.
- Rolled into months, quarters or years
- Precise to the nth percentile for a single metric two years from now.
Cash management is also not just a forecast. It is a process and plan with time sensitive action items that need to be actively managed. And it requires effort at set times.
If someone wants to do the cash planning process manually they most certainly can. Up to this point there was no clear alternative.
But now with Helm, QuickBooks Online and Xero users have a much faster, easier and automated way to manage their cash. They can reduce time and costs, and scale cash management services across their small business or practice.
And that is extremely exciting to us. It will open up cash management services to more small businesses, changing the way they operate from being reactive to proactive. In doing so, their wellbeing and success will naturally increase. For any year, let alone one like 2020, that’s a massive win.
If you want to learn more about Helm and how it can help you save time and money, please reach out to us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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