”We wanted to make a simple, all-in-one product, all-in-one subscription, and remove all the limits we can. So, I don’t care how many receipts you want to upload into our system. Do it.”
— Garrett Baird
Listen to the complete episode here:
Are You Struggling with Organization and Financial Management?
Organizing your financial documents can be a key to your business’s success. In this episode, we’re having the President & CEO of The Neat Company (Neat), Garrett Baird, who offers tips on how HVAC business owners can declutter their business.
As a service business owner, you must understand your numbers, like being able to read and interpret financial statements, knowing your breakeven point, and having a good handle on cash flow.
- When you know your numbers, you can make informed, strategic decisions about where to allocate resources and which products or services are most profitable. Good number-crunching skills will help you run your business more efficiently and effectively. Though, it’s too stressful to keep all those numbers organized in your head, so you need tools and software to manage that for you.
You don’t want to miss this episode!
Join Tersh Blissett and his co-host Josh Crouch as they talk with Garrett Baird about simplifying the organization and management of your financial documents.
Tune in as they sit with an amazing coach, a leader with professional passion who shares tips about how to think positively even in difficult situations. Let his nuggets of wisdom and goals guide you in owning a thriving, profitable, and ever-growing business.
Are you looking for valuable business advice to reach that seven-figure revenue mark? Do you want actionable tips to properly navigate through every business challenge you encounter as a tradesperson along the way? Then this podcast is definitely for you.
In this episode, we discuss:
- Problems small businesses face with financial management
- How Neat’s software benefits small business owners
- Neat’s pricing, customer service, integration capabilities, and more!
Why do Small Business Owners need to know about Neat?
Garrett says Neat helps business owners to Better Understand Their Financials.
[6:58-17:26] “If you’re filing a Schedule C, you’re doing it yourself when it comes to your tax return, and you don’t have a CPA, so Neat will give you everything you need to prepare your taxes AND to, along the way, see how your business is performing,” says Garrett.
How Neat’s “Monthly Review” Could Save You TIME and MONEY
[22:37-23:32] “We created something we call the Monthly Review, and the Monthly Review is exactly what it sounds like. You step through your transactions and do two things, you’re doing the categorization, but… at the same time, we’re using our traditional strength at Neat of matching the receipts, or invoices, to transactions so that you have those financial documents, the source documents, behind those transactions fully married up so that you don’t have to show up with a shoe box either to your CPA or God-forbid the IRS,” says Garrett Baird.
How is Neat set up, and how much does it cost?
Garrett answered that there’s a simple subscription fee.
[41:26-42:25] “We’re also a bit weird we don’t charge for added users, we don’t charge for multiple businesses or lines of business… We keep it super simple to come in and use our service. We’re right around that $24/month price point for our customers,” says Garrett Baird.
How Neat’s “Monthly Review” Can EASILY Prepare Your Small Business For TAX Season
[42:37-49:18] “It’s built into our application, and it’s essentially a workflow that steps you through all of our transactions and the matching receipts, gives you that final opportunity to say “yup, looks good…”… as you go, you’re getting near real-time feedback on the performance of your business,” says Garrett Baird.
Garrett Baird recently joined Service Business Mastery Podcast, and here are some highlights of the podcast:
- Problems small businesses face with financial management
- How Neat’s software benefits small business owners
- Can Neat integrate with CRM and/or Quickbooks?
- Can Neat replace accounting software?
- Neat’s pricing, customer service, and integration capabilities
Key Resources From The Show:
About The Guest:
Garrett Baird is the President and CEO of The Neat Company (Neat), a software company that provides financial management tools to small businesses. He started the company to help entrepreneurs who are struggling with organization and management. The goal was always to make life easier for business owners so they could focus on what they’re passionate about. Now, businesses worldwide rely on Neat’s software to keep things organized – it’s no wonder Garrett is seen as a visionary in this space!
Meet the Hosts:
Tersh Blissett is a serial entrepreneur who has created and scaled multiple profitable home service businesses in his small-town market. He’s dedicated to giving back to the industry that has provided so much for him and his family. Connect with him on LinkedIn.
Joshua Crouch has been in the home services industry, specifically HVAC, for 8+ years as an Operations Manager, Branch Manager, Territory Sales Manager, and Director of Marketing. He’s also the Founder of Relentless Digital, where his focus is on dominating your local market online. Connect with him on LinkedIn.
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For a complete transcription of the interview, Read More
22-06-22 Garrett Baird
Tersh Blissett: [00:00:00] hello, everyone out there in podcast world. I hope you’re having a wonderful day. You’re listening to, or watching the service business mastery podcast. We’re gonna talk about the most exciting topic there is to do with your business. And I’ll be honest with you. Garrett and I, and. Josh he was typing.
He was doing all of the stuff that he does all the time, making sure that we are in organized We all started our business so that we can do more accounting and crunching numbers. Now I’m kidding. Most of our listeners are HVAC owners, service managers some technicians who are considering starting their own business.
And most of us were technicians. I didn’t mean to leave out. Plumbing electrical trade, skilled trades in general. We have, that’s what our target audience is. And Most of us were not accountants before we purchased a business. Now, there are some, I do actually personally know some accountants who purchased a business because they seen the books and they’re like, you’re making good money.
Let me buy your business. But for the most part, it’s not the case. We’re really good service technicians or installation or. People. And so we, we are like, you know what, I can do this even better than that crazy guy. That’s sitting in the office, making all those millions and trillions of dollars and stuff.
So I’m gonna start my own business. And then we quickly learned that there’s a lot more to it than just being a really good [00:01:30] technician or a really good salesperson. So Josh what do you have to add to that?
Josh Crouch: To be honest, So I, I actually went to a little background in accounting cause I like numbers, but what I really like is data not necessarily looking at journal E no, you serious journal entries and stuff like that.
Anything that can simplify. What is not simple, usually it’s definitely helpful, especially when it comes to record keeping, cuz we all know the IRS likes to poke around in our businesses whenever you start making a little bit of money, so it’s good to have that documentation and have that stuff taken care of in a,
Tersh Blissett: I, what I hear you saying is that it’s not a good idea to have just like your shoebox and just chunk your shoebox of receipts to them and be like, eh,
Josh Crouch: Figure it out.
If you want your accountant to be very angry with you. Throw all your stuff in a shoebox and be like, here you go. Audit
Tersh Blissett: time. yeah, I’m talking about the IRS agent. We should be like. Fancy badge. Here’s my shoebox. , that’s never a good idea to piss him off that. Anyways Josh share a little bit about Sarah.
We’ve if you haven’t heard us talk about Billy talk with Billy Stevens with Sarah you’re living under a rock or either this is your first time listening, and if it. Please click subscribe and leave us a review because it’s gonna be amazing episode. I say leave us a review. If it’s gonna be a five star review, it’s not, don’t leave the review.
But yeah, Josh. Yeah.
Josh Crouch: One of our first partners and sponsors of the show was Sarah who is founded by Billy Stevens. Who’s a guy who’s, he’s a legend in his own, right? In the industry. Before technology. [00:03:00] Was doing really well, got his business to, I don’t know, 25% net profit, which was literally unheard of got bought out essentially by what is now the wrench group.
So if anyone’s been in the industry long enough, who the wrench group is but they, he, the only reason he came back into the industry is because there, there is a gap in the software industry. And what we mean by that is. Software is making bus running businesses almost more difficult because you have this software and that software, and you have all these things that have to try to connect together.
And Billy’s system really works on the important things, working off of margins, working off a job with job time efficiency. So that way your team can be efficient, automated, dispatching to keep your overhead lower. And a bunch of
other things that they got coming out. They literally have stuff rolling out all the time.
But we’re very happy to have Sarah as a sponsor of the.
Tersh Blissett: Yeah, good job way to keep it at 30 seconds. No, I’m just kidding. company cam is our second partner here and company cam is amazing. It’s another technology. We are nerds when it comes to technology. We both do have shining object syndrome, so we’re gonna get that outta the way.
But we both we love these products a hundred percent. And the, one of the great things about company cam is the fact that for me and Josh, more so Josh than me, but I really think it’s a cool. Feature is the fact that it’s, it keeps your metadata and it saves it. So whenever it does automatically upload to the carousel on your homepage the metadata is there.
And so Google’s Hey, I love this. That means you do service in this area and you do service in this area. And it’s [00:04:30] this is so simple. I don’t have to go in here and do black hat stuff like Josh does. I’m just. Josh fine. Do anything like that? He’s above board a hundred percent. I’m just kidding.
No, it’s it’s one of those things where you used to have to work around it and figure trying your best to figure out what Google’s thinking. And it’s just another tool to help it out. And sharing, sharing photos. What’s that photos one picture is worth. A thousand thousand words or million I think a video’s worth a million, so we can do two photos instead of a blog post is what a blog post supposed to be 2000 words.
But anyways, sharing photos like that with clients is amazing. And it really helps. Spread the message more clearly and help communicate and have a better overall client experience. Company cam you’re welcome for the one minute instead of a 32nd. Yeah, so yeah, let’s get started with the show.
Are you looking for valuable business advice to reach that seven figure revenue mark, do you want actionable tips to properly navigate through every business challenge you encounter along the way? Let tur BLI and Josh crouch be your guide in getting you to the top here at service business mastery tune in as they sit down with world renowned authors in business leadership and personal
Garret Baird: growth.
Who share valuable
Tersh Blissett: insights about management, marketing, pricing, human resources, and so much more. Let their nuggets of wisdom, gold guide you in [00:06:00] owning a thriving, profitable, and ever growing business. Here are your hosts and Josh.
Hey, Garrett. Welcome.
Garret Baird: Hey. Hey Josh. Hey tur. How are you guys? Great.
Tersh Blissett: Great. So fantastic Garrett. You’re with oh, sorry. I was just following for you.
Josh Crouch: hopefully by the clearly reverse that. No,
Tersh Blissett: hopefully by the end of this episode, you will pick up on my dry.
Garret Baird: Excellent. That’s extremely dry. I’m in good company.
Then my wife tells me that dry and borderline boring for me too. So there you. Two with the neat company guys. And what is
Tersh Blissett: the neat company?
Garret Baird: Yeah the neat company we help small business owners with financial organization. I think you guys mentioned the intro.
Nobody started their business to become experts at accounting. Although Josh sounds like you might have a promising path to CPA ship. And we put together a solution for made for. Business owner specifically. So whether you are a contractor consultant a coach a technician if you own your own business and generally speaking, if you’re 10 or fewer employees, I think you’ll find significant value and needs all in one approach to getting financially organized and
Tersh Blissett: perfect.
I noticed that you mentioned. [00:07:30] 10 or less employees is your sweet spot. What makes it different? Once you hit over that 10, 10 employee mark, is that when you really start, need to bring in house people, is that, what is that? The reasoning, that’s
Garret Baird: what we’ve seen generally at that cutoff point you get, you need a more sophisticated payroll approach.
, you’ve got different types of tax preparation. You would likely benefit from engaging a CPA to help you prepare your IRS filings. But we focus generally on those business owners who are, want to do it themselves. And as we’ve, surveyed, talked to our customers, talk to prospective customers, we’ve we were shocked by how many.
To have their hand and their finances and understand their business. They don’t just want, okay. The reports are just gonna funk onto my desk at the end of the month, end of the quarter, end of the year. They want to have a hand in doing this because there is certainly benefit in understanding the money in and money out, which is what needs is
Tersh Blissett: all done.
Yeah. More money in less money. Hopefully. Yeah. Oh hang on a second. Hey. Hey Julie, we gotta fire somebody. We got 11 people. Yeah, I don’t wanna bring anybody else in house no, I’m just kidding. I’m just kidding. Julie, come running in here. Like we really gotta fire somebody. No, I’m just kidding, Julie.
I’m just kidding. No, we we get I don’t get it flunked on my desk. I get it flunked in my email and then it. Spider webs that never gets looked at. And no one of the biggest questions that we get [00:09:00] asked the most common question we get asked, and anytime we say, Hey, what do y’all wanna hear about our numbers?
What they mean above the line below? What that’s such a common question. What’s gross profit versus net profit. And is employee like field labor part. And then office is that different. And so just a lot of times we get asked questions just in general like that. And a lot of times we’re lucky to have Garrett on the show, by the way, because a lot of times, whenever I ask my CPA that I’m like, Hey, will answer this question for me.
And he is gives me a lot of legal stuff and I’m like, okay, will please stop. Just stop. Like you’re boring me to death. I don’t give me the
Josh Crouch: dumb down
Tersh Blissett: version. Like you’re at level 10. You think you’re doing level two, but you’re really doing like a level nine and I need you to do a level one for me.
Garrett, tell us what sets the neat company apart from just a any bookkeeper or anybody else that would be on your. Yeah,
Garret Baird: sure thing. So I’ve been with the new company for just over two years guys, but need’s been in business for about 20. Many of your listeners may actually remember, or even still have one of our neat receipt scanners which was very popular, literally sold millions of these back in kind of the early two thousands originally were sold through airport [00:10:30] kiosks.
And then eventually eventually neat decided to it doubled down on the software aspects of it. We eventually were selling a bundled capability to subscribe to our cloud backup service, along with the scanner. And we found that that software piece of it and the subscription model created a much more sticky relationship with our customers.
And so we really doubled down on that. And. As neat continues to grow its subscriber base. Eventually solutions emerged along the lines of let’s see Dropbox, iCloud, Evernote lots and lots of ways that you could store receipt data. And so we knew we needed to take a next step in our evolution.
And that’s what led us to create the need that you would find today, which is an all in one capability for electronic invoicing, electronic payments. And looking at your transactions getting insights about the cash flow of your business. In addition to all of the traditional strength that we had in coupling receipts and parsing receipt data.
So guys, B before I came to need, I was a small business owner. And it was a software company and only six, six people. So I had to wear the finance hat and I would go in, each month. And it sounds like you tur, I would like literally wait till the end of the month and have my stack of like todos and I was using a digital solution.
I would go in and there’d just be this massive pile of transactions to be [00:12:00] categorized. I would do it. I’d go through I’d invoice. My customers
Tersh Blissett: fingers crossed that there’s like matches and it’s found the match. Yes. And it’s ha. And then you get done with it and it’s This is all screwed up.
Cuz you went through and didn’t look at anything. It just hit. Yes. And I was like, I guess I probably shouldn’t be doing this. And then
Garret Baird: I had the next problem, which was, so am I done? Is this it? So that lack of confidence that I had led me to like you guys hire a CPA and I would talk to this guy.
I said, all right, Doug. am I done? And Doug would go in, he would log into that same account. He would say, yeah, you build your customers. Wait. Wow. You’ve even figured out this deferred revenue thing. Good on you pat on your back. Yeah. Yeah. And I’m like I am a nerd. I can, write code, doing this accounting stuff, I.
Just don’t know. Yeah. And as I would finish that up, he said, yeah, you, you nailed it. Let’s all I’m gonna do is reconcile. I’m like, oh, okay. Ooh, that’s a big word. Tell me about that. Sounds scary. he says I’m gonna take that bank statement that you sent me. I’m gonna print it. and I’m gonna look at the screen and I’m gonna make check marks on the piece of paper and then stick in a folder.
Sound, sound good. I’m like. But excuse me that’s reconciling a yeah. And he said, that’s what we do. And I said, what year is it? You know that like you’re [00:13:30] smart guy, Doug, like the pace the system that printed, that statement is the same one that fed those transactions that you’re looking on the screen.
I. They match. How often do they not match? Usually never. But ,
Tersh Blissett: I have to justify my
Garret Baird: job. And so when I began to talk to the folks at need, as I was starting to consider consider coming over to the business, and they were
describing, look, we’re turning this concept of reconciliation on its head.
We’re designing a solution that is, for business owners by business owners, we’re removing the accounting jargon that creates confusion. And we’re no the
Tersh Blissett: absolute worst jargon there is credit.
Garret Baird: Oh man.
Tersh Blissett: Credit versus. Refund versus debit versus I just wanna, I hate my life every time I
Garret Baird: even
Josh Crouch: try to Google it, it took me forever.
Even when I was doing, when I thought accounting was gonna be my future in my early twenties. I’m like, I still don’t understand this.
Tersh Blissett: right. Garrett, let me ask you really fast. I’m butt in here real quick. If we’re using neat a neat company are we basically doing away with if we’re using QuickBooks online or whatever the other one is that people use Peachtree.
Yeah. Sage, whatever are we no longer using those? Are, we
Garret Baird: still couldn’t use those. If you are gen generally speaking, if you are, filing a schedule C you’re doing it yourself when it comes to [00:15:00] your tax return you don’t have a CPA. Yeah. Neat. We’ll give you everything that you need to prepare your taxes and to along the way, see how your business is performing.
We, we see so many of our customers that literally begin manag managing the finances of their business, like by looking at their online. I’m like, oh,
Tersh Blissett: there’s money in the account. There’s good. Wow.
Garret Baird: Look at my balance. It’s greater than zero. Amazing. We’re winning and guys, when they go and they connect their accounts into neat for
the first time and they, click over to our insights page, we look over our customer’s shoulder sometimes and we’ll see, they go to our insights page.
And where we have, charts of here’s all your, money and money out over the last 12 months. Here are the expense categories where you’ve been spending your money. Here’s here’s a look at all your, the different cash balances of your accounts. Here’s your, basic profit and loss.
We see this like slow scroll moment where you can tell there’s steam rep for the first time ever the gears
Tersh Blissett: are turning in their head. It might not be putting out a whole lot, lots of steam. But yeah, this is definitely making you think for sure. Exactly. And
Garret Baird: you see that? What happened in April?
Tersh Blissett: yeah. Like where, wait a minute. Where did all that money go? What did you buy in April? Are you able to quickly, I wouldn’t say job cost. Maybe say Hey, you’re not charging the correct amount of money because [00:16:30] you’re losing money. Obviously, if you have more going out than coming in, that’s the, that’s a sign, but sometimes it gets pretty granular.
Hey look our we broke apart all of our departments. So we have plumbing, service, plumbing, installation, I’m sorry, plumbing, residential. Service plumbing. Residential installation, same for commercial plumbing, same for air HVAC, commercial, plumbing, maintenance. So we have ’em all. And so then we’re able to job call or not job costs, but profit and loss each.
Division of the business. So then we can say, Hey look, our, this is a true story. We figured out that our commercial maintenance department was losing us all of the money that the commercial retrofit was making us. And so we had to change. We had to get rid of commercial maintenance or change the way that we did things there, which we did.
And. We wouldn’t have known that if it was all commercial HVAC, because it that’s what it was the previous years. And we were yeah, we’re good. But in, in reality, we could have been really good. Had we not lost money in the other
department? Is there a long story way around my elbow to get.
Other side to try and figure out this question. The audience is used to it. They are, they really are. It, is there a way to, for us to know that information through neat.
Garret Baird: Yes, absolutely. So good
Tersh Blissett: job. We’re done. [00:18:00] Yeah. Yeah. I’m just kidding. Yeah.
Garret Baird: The setting up your categorization is one of the key things.
At the beginning of working with need. And this is where we’re a bit different than some of our competitors out there. We’re weird. We answer the phone if you call us. And what get outta here. I know.
Tersh Blissett: I said an email and two weeks later you might respond to it. Yeah, exactly.
Garret Baird: With a follow up question oh, that was helpful. No, so we we answer the phone we have consultative sessions with our customers cuz getting those categorizations set up so that you can see exactly what you saw at ter. Straight away is super important. So having that categorization set up out of the gate is critical.
It paints that picture for you right away. And then it becomes very easy from there to do that kind of drill down that you were talking about. So you run one of our financial reports and you’re like, wait what is. In that commercial line and it’s the the cost of goods sold.
What is that number will actually have a link on that number for you to double click double click single click and look at all of the individual transactions that make up that number and that insight right there alone either helps our customer to understand. Or oh, wait a minute.
No, this belongs in that other part of the business. Oops. Let’s clean that up and fix that. And then once you’re [00:19:30] all done with that, we’ve put
together a unique process. I was talking about this lack of confidence that I had earlier and this. Nuts approach to reconciliation.
Traditionally we’ve actually created something we call the monthly review and the monthly review is exactly what it sounds like. You step through your transactions and do two things. You’re doing the categorization. But then you’re also saying, yep, this one’s correct. And at the same time we’re using our, traditional strength and need of matching receipts or matching invoices to transactions so that you are, have those financial documents, the source documents behind those transactions fully married up so that you don’t have to show up show up with a shoebox either either to your CPA or to.
God forbid the IRS it’s, the shoebox becomes completely digital and completely organized. And most of that is done automatically with our AI approach too to matching receipt data, to transactions.
Tersh Blissett: So tell us about that. The whole receipt capture thing and I won’t mention what we do.
We talked about it off air, and we’re not gonna go there. But We, I felt Hey, look we’re above the, we were ahead of things. For the size company, we were, everybody collects the receipts. It gets uploaded into an app that, that app transcribed the data. It’s a learned process. It wasn’t perfect to start with, but then the AI learned it [00:21:00] and then it sent it over to QuickBooks.
Cuz we use QuickBook salon. That was pre it was pretty good. It was much better than trying to store receipts in Dropbox or not. We’re not even go Evernote because that’s way over a lot of people’s head. But because that stuff just gets the picture’s horrible or it’s half cut off, and so tell us what, how you solve that. And it’s also an accountability thing too, a as far as like technicians going to pick up a part or whatnot. And not really being the part that they’re supposed to be getting, because they’re getting it for their mom’s house or something like that. So it has an accountability aspect to it as well.
Garret Baird: Right on and let’s not even talk about when people hand write something on the receipt. And, but anyway, neat has been scanning receipts for years and years. So our AI is extremely well trained because of that, I think we’re, I think we’re sitting on top of two or three petabytes of data to nerd out with pet. That’s a lots massive amount of data. Yeah.
Hang on. Lemme Google that real
Tersh Blissett: fast. Yeah,
Josh Crouch: I don’t even know if I’ve ever
Tersh Blissett: heard that before.
Garret Baird: I’m just kidding. Kidding. And that’s, and the bulk of that is receipts that of course have line items on them that need to be reviewed extracted et cetera. So we have been building on top of our.
Parsing and OCR and matching [00:22:30] capabilities literally for years to solve just this problem. But we, we have a lot of mechanisms to help our customers get the data in, to empty the shoebox, if you will. So whether you with plenty of customers that still have a need scanner or any kind of scanner when we got outta the hardware business, we.
all scanners are welcome.
Tersh Blissett: Oh, that’s cool. So you can get like a brother scanner or
Garret Baird: anything, brother. Can you take a picture of it with your phone, Raven? Any scanner that you’ve got and then right. The most popular way to capture receipts now is through the neat mobile app. So we see customers primarily using that and we’ll do the, it’s addressing a lot of the challenges you Atter.
Getting the lighting, correct. Getting it cropped properly. And making sure that the data that comes in you can quickly add additional metadata to the receipt itself at the time of capture. So we make it super simple. Let
Tersh Blissett: me ask you something really quick on the receipts. Yeah. Once it’s scanned.
I guess it’s two questions once it’s scanned. Do we, are we responsible for keeping that receipt or is that receipt good enough for if we get audited and how long do we need to keep that receipt? Even if it’s a digital version of it and how long do you keep it? Yeah, for the IRS purposes, we,
Garret Baird: we recommend keeping it.
And I’m biting my tongue here because I’m very paperless person. Generally speaking.[00:24:00] But I think even the IRS remains is recommends his best practice to keep seven years worth of receipts, but you can see they’ve been. The with rules changes over the years becoming a bit more lenient.
T and E exp travel and entertainment expenses, $75 cutoff to have a associated paper receipt.
Tersh Blissett: So that’s something. So are you saying that we still need to keep the paper receipt even after we’ve scanned it and given it to.
Garret Baird: I would, it’s a best practice. Hang on. Let me write that many of our customers don’t do it.
Many of our customers throw right in the trash. OK. It, it will hold up in an IRS audit Uhhuh. So the digital version is good enough there, but just again, it’s a quote unquote, best practice. So you keep the receivers, right?
Tersh Blissett: Yeah. And I, so it is been a debated topic. I’ve asked other people as well.
I’ve asked my CPA and. Sometimes they say like a American express statement. They’re like, ah, that’s good. Versus keeping every single receipt on your American express. I don’t know. That’s
Garret Baird: a hot, that’s a tricky one. That’s a tricky one. Cause you could see that. Yeah. Costco, home Depot level transaction where your American express statement will have the merchant, but what did you buy?
In Amazon? Amazon classic one. That’s a dark
Josh Crouch: hole right there. Exactly.
Garret Baird: Alright. $320, but wait on horse
Tersh Blissett: feed, you do horses. Yeah. Yeah. We had to get it for [00:25:30] our customer.
Garret Baird: Exactly. Amazon receipts are an interesting one. Cause they they, for a time. Would put the details of your receipt and the body of their email at the time, but they don’t do that anymore.
Tersh Blissett: just a link. You have to go log into your account and blah, blah, blah.
Garret Baird: Exactly. So they’ve created much more work for business owners as a result of that. But that’s why we try to make it much easier. Another way to capture receipts in need is the dedicated neat cloud.com email address that we give to every one of our supplier.
Josh Crouch: I was gonna ask about. So because when we have supply or supplier invoices and stuff like that, it would come to email and I’m like, okay, now we gotta get these over to QuickBooks. And it’s just it’s extra work. Not that it doesn’t, obviously needs to be done, but how do you, so this is your solution.
So instead of doing that, have that, like CC’d on these emails or just have it go directly there or what’s the solution.
Garret Baird: I, I, our customers do it in a number of different ways, so they will. Set up the, their need as a need address as a CC, as the, if that provider offers, multiple billing contacts and you want a copy and you want better copy or if you’re using, Gmail or outlook set up a rule to forward it.
Upon arrival to to your neat cloud email address we’ve seen multiple ways that gets done, but that dedicated email address, you immediately will get a response back from our service saying, yep. This was successfully updated. Here’s here’s your image of [00:27:00] the the receipt or if we had an issue, we’ll let you know that, Hey, we went ahead and sent this to our human verification.
So this is another big deal. Oh, that’s cool. For us. So we actually have a service we’ve had for a number of years called need verify. And it will kick out a document for the human review. If our AI was stuck on some piece. And I’ll tell you guys, the a huge number of them have some giant scribble that’s on it,
which is usually.
The name of the person that you took to coffee or dinner, or what have you.
Tersh Blissett: And no, I don’t ever do that allegedly on purpose.
Garret Baird: Exactly. cause yeah, the, sometimes the IRS wants to know who did you go out with? And so scribble in that name is the best methodology. And we are oftentimes able to extract that data and include it in the metadata that gets produced with the receipt.
But sometimes. Let me
Tersh Blissett: ask a question say that I’m listening to this episode and I have just started my business or I’m getting ready to start my business. Or I’ve just, I’ve been in business a couple years, but I’ve never grown past one or two trucks. Maybe three trucks. What’s the process.
I guess there’s a couple questions that I’m gonna ask here. What’s the process of. Onboarding and do we have someone that’s a dedicated person, that’s gonna say, Hey look, not necessarily your CPA, but somebody who’s educated on enough of a level to [00:28:30] say, we recommend do this. Or versus that. Obviously we’re not a legal service you need to contact with CPA or whatnot tax lawyer, or whatever.
And then say someone already has a CRM that they’re using within HVAC industry. There’s, a slew of them. And they’re very popular to talk about and people get on ’em really early in their business life. Is there an integration with these different CRMs with.
Garret Baird: Yeah. Good. Good question. So as customers as customers come in and sign up there’s we wanna do as much as we possibly can for that customer to selfer.
But we are here as I was describing earlier. If you want to be stepped through the process of making sure you’re set up for success we, again will answer the phone either when you call in or you can set up an appointment with us to talk at a time that’s convenient for. And. When the set of process happens, one of the first things we’ll see is, oh, okay.
Yeah, I’d really love to be able to send digital invoices. I’ve been, attaching word documents to emails and waiting for paper checks to show up for a really long time. , I’ve heard in the mail, heard to get paid a lot faster. If I do this and I can choose to allow credit card payments, which my customers may love.
How will am I to, fund their reward points. Fair. Can you
Josh Crouch: guys, can you guys scan checks in the field?
Garret Baird: We don’t do that right now. But it is something that we’re looking [00:30:00] at and thinking about in addition to that remote remote card reading capability as well.
Okay. But for right for now, issuing an invoice to your customer in real time is super simple through our mobile. But what we find is somebody who is looking to really digitize their business and comes to us well I’ve got a customer list sitting here in my CRM and I’d love to feed it into neat.
So that I can have basically put push button invoicing capability. Can you help me get started? And we’ll do that. So we will literally be, so we will literally take a phone call with you step through everything to get connected. We’re we have a number of CRMs, so we’re already connected into but oftentimes when it comes to specialized industry CRMs, that may not be on our list, but we.
We have dedicated and I’ve made sure that our head of customer success has people dedicated to setting up for success, bringing in data to get to get our customers started. We’ll continue to add and integrate additional CRMs over time. You can just enter customer information in one place and sync it over into but for, for now, we’ll get you set up with that initial set of customers and they make it super easy to add additional customers over time.
And get you set up for electronic payments.
Tersh Blissett: So if they, if you’re not connected already, make sure I’m getting this correct. If you’re not connected and you don’t have a [00:31:30] web. Way of grabbing information. If we do add someone to the CRM, we’re gonna have to manually put them in into neat as well.
That’s correct. Yeah. Just confirm, confirming that confirmation confirming
Garret Baird: it, but it’s literally put in their name, put in their email address. Okay. You’re good to go.
Josh Crouch: So I have a question later on, cuz we talked about like where you guys like your niche audience is. So what is that?
Let’s say somebody’s been on neat for two years now. They’ve gotten to the point where they’ve really grown their business and they need to get that additional help. What is the cuz we all know changing. What we’re doing both from a CRM standpoint or any technology you’re using and moving that data to another place is a total pain in the ass.
What does that look like for you guys that, you get to a certain point and maybe they need to move to a Peachtree or Sage or QuickBooks because they need to hire a CPA or whatever the case is. How does that transition work? And is it seamless? I guess that’s, that would be a question I would have for somebody that
Garret Baird: gets to that.
Yeah. So it’s a great question. So in this, in the overall digital accounting world, guys QuickBooks is not, they’re not the 800 pound gorilla, they’re the 8,000 pound gorilla. Yeah. Their, moat has been their network of EPAs and bookkeepers that they’ve established for years.
Tersh Blissett: Oh yeah. There, most of the CPAs that are, they’re like, oh, you don’t use QuickBooks. Nah, you gotta go use somebody else as CPA.
Garret Baird: Like that conversation happens. A ton. I bet. And we, we’re, we are not we’re not sitting here saying we’re [00:33:00] just, we’re gonna out QuickBooks, right?
No. We want our customers to use meat, to do everything that they can to prepare. For their CPA, who is likely using QuickBooks to manage their entire practice and their, all of their other customers to be able to have that handover. So we at need, we’ve been integrated to QuickBooks for years and have, many thousands of our customers that take advantage of feeding that data into QuickBooks because their CPA has asked them to do.
And so we fully embrace that. So we see our customers the business owner being very focused on, let me set myself up categorize everything, do that monthly review process. Feel like I’m getting the insights that I need on my cash flow in need. Get very used to doing that, using our mobile app on the go and taking advantage of all the all the simplicity and and user interface advantages that we have that speak to business owners.
But yeah, when it comes to time to do that tax app, and you want to do the big handoff to the accountant. Instead of showing up with the shoebox of receipts it’s literally, push button to transfer the data into your accountants instance of QuickBooks. And the accountant is happy. You, our customers are happy because they get to continue to use neat and the rhythm that they’ve gotten used to especially after using the service for a couple of years.
And that’s [00:34:30] what we see. Oh, hang on.
Tersh Blissett: I’m sorry. I completely missed what you said five minutes ago. So let’s circle back to this. I was under the impression that you were gonna off board people from neat to QuickBooks, but what you’re saying is they’re gonna continue to. Use neat, but the data is gonna transfer into QuickBooks.
Garret Baird: Exactly. Oh, dang. That’s cool. Okay. When, as we were talking about at the start of the conversation, when you really start to grow your business, get that kind of 10 employees, you’ve got, more sophisticated accounting needs that’s when you may grow out of. But if you are still that, smaller business that’s emerging and you’re just getting going.
And accounting’s just not your bag. Start with need. So do
Tersh Blissett: you ever have anybody who has been on QuickBooks or QuickBooks online and they want to come over to neat? Can you reverse that communication from QuickBooks to neat?
Garret Baird: We do. This happens a lot because we what they’ll find is somebody will be on QuickBooks and not realize that somehow they got upsold or whatever.
Tersh Blissett: paying like $300 a
Garret Baird: month and it’s like, how much is this again? And wait, I’m paying these payment fees on top of this as well. So we definitely see people who come to us. Both because of where where our price is. And then also just the QuickBooks is often just too much for many
Tersh Blissett: business owners.
Oh, [00:36:00] it’s an 8,000 pound gorilla is what it is. You look at it. And then next thing you know, they’re saying debits and credits and you’re like, . Yeah. Okay. I don’t know exactly.
Garret Baird: Oh, so wait, I need to do journal entries for this and that. And the other thing what, why is
Tersh Blissett: that exactly. So you mentioned pricing.
How is that set up? Is it depending on the amount of users you have or what. Yeah,
Garret Baird: so simple subscription fee. We’re also a bit weird that we don’t charge for added users. We don’t charge for multiple multiple businesses or lines of business as we were talking about earlier oh yeah.
We keep it super, super simple to come in and use our service. And we’re right around that kind of 20, 24 bucks a month price point for our customers. And wait a minute,
Tersh Blissett: now that include. The transcribing the receipts and. All
Garret Baird: of that. All of it, the human verification piece, when you need that our dedicated service team who’s there is gonna answer the phone.
Tersh Blissett: I pay $24 a month, I get Garrett’s cell phone number.
Garret Baird: I talk to a lot of our customers guys, and yes, you wanna reach out and set up an appoint with me. I make it and I’ll do my best to talk you through it. But believe me the folks that answer our phone calls are have set up many. Success will need accounts than I have.
Tersh Blissett: That seems like a a lot of value for a very low price. Especially the review, [00:37:30] the monthly review. I know we’re coming up towards our end of our time, but that monthly review is that, okay. So if I’m paying $24 a month, I’m not expecting someone to get on a phone call with me and go over.
My financials is this just an email that’s sent to us? And we say, okay, we have to review this email. Is that, that’s, I’m assuming that’s what it is.
Garret Baird: It’s it’s built into our application both whether you’re coming to our desktop web application or you’re in the mobile app.
And it is just a, essentially a workflow that steps you through all of your transactions. And the matching receipts gives you that final opportunity to say, yep, looks good. That’s in the right place. And, ready ready. To be marked as reviewed step through those. And we’ve seen customers who will do that, as the month goes along.
Tersh Blissett: Oh, so not wait until the end of month.
Garret Baird: You don’t have the big pile at month end. And I love that pile. I like the stress. I
Tersh Blissett: mean, if I can add more stress to the business, I’d just
Garret Baird: do it. And what that does. As you go, you essentially are getting near real time feedback on the performance of your business.
So you’ve gotten through the monthly review. Great. I’m caught up for the week or maybe I’m halfway through the week. You click over to our insights and you’re seeing trends all of a sudden you’re like, oh wait, what. Happened this month to date so far, I’m like down compared to where I would [00:39:00] be at this point in the month, last month, what the rule backs going on here and
Tersh Blissett: it give you any sort of insight as to why you’re.
Not reading what you’re thinking. You should be reading
Garret Baird: it’s it’s actually something we are gonna be adding later this year is things like being able to compare yourselves to other business owners in your industry. And things like exactly like that. Yeah,
Josh Crouch: That’d be interesting just cuz a lot of times people don’t know, they’re like, I’m at 5% net.
That must be good. I have money in the bank. Yeah. And then they see their industry average is either higher or lower, which obviously, 5% it’s okay. It’s just probably above industry average, sadly
Tersh Blissett: three percent’s industry average.
Josh Crouch: Yeah. But it’s good to know those barometer that we have a goal
Tersh Blissett: I’m still working my way.
I, I need to bump up you’re at two, right? No, I need to bump up 3% to get to industry average. No,
Josh Crouch: at least you didn’t say you didn’t have to bump up 5%.
Tersh Blissett: Probably, really do I have to bump up 5%? No, I’m kidding. The it’s one of those things like you, you have a rule of thumb and I wish whoever came up with that I’m top my thumbs off.
It. One of those things, where, what do I need to be like? What net profit do I need to be at better than what you were last month? That’s the number that you want to be at? But is if there’s a way to, to help, not necessarily tell you like, Hey technician number five is a horrible salesperson.
You need to get rid of them, but more so Hey look you’re. Costs of good sold[00:40:30] are way too high. Your percentage of cost of good sold way too high. Maybe your supply house went up on prices and didn’t tell anybody and their, your technicians are still buying everything and not looking at how much
And that’s exactly right.
Garret Baird: We’ve had customers who have said. Oh, my gosh, neat has saved me thousands of dollars in billing errors that I get from my vendors just by stepping through this monthly review process. And I’m like, man you must be processing a ton of invoices. They’re like yeah.
, that’s the nature of my business.
Tersh Blissett: Is there a lot? Is there a limit on.
Garret Baird: Invoices. Absolutely not. No limit to how many transactions get fed into our system. How many invoices you produce? None whatsoever. We wanted to make it as simple all in one product, all in one subscription and remove all the limits we can.
So I don’t care how many receipts you wanna upload into our system? Oh, don’t
Tersh Blissett: challenge me. Do
Garret Baird: it. Do it. do it switch over for, I just, no,
Tersh Blissett: I just
Garret Baird: can’t wait over guys church and we’ll
Tersh Blissett: we’ll honestly, I cannot wait to give my CPA a box of blank receipts. And at the bottom of it, it says, just kidding here, go to this website.
Garret Baird: That’s part of my job guys. neat.com. Is where you go to find a lot more information.
Tersh Blissett: Josh, you got anything?
Josh Crouch: No, this was great. I didn’t know a solution like this existed. I always, when I started my business, I’m like QuickBooks, that’s what I gotta, start with that. And honestly, I don’t use it for outside of looking at my P and L that my accountant does.
I don’t look at it for [00:42:00] anything.
Tersh Blissett: literally Josh and I not Josh. I went through and created. I, I. QuickBooks a couple months ago. And I’m like, this is such a Royal pain just to have a couple receipts a month, three receipts a month. And it was like I guess we just gotta use QuickBooks cuz that’s what you use.
You use QuickBooks.
Garret Baird: Exactly. And you’re like, which of these 18 items on the nav should I begin with?
Tersh Blissett: I actually had my wife in here. She’s looking over my shoulder. I’m like, is this what I’m supposed to be doing for this? And she’s no, you’re way off. I’m like, oh, good, glad you’re here then.
Garret Baird: Exactly
Tersh Blissett: Garrett, man. We were really appreciate it. And Nick who connected us we really appreciate the connection and Josh, you don’t have anything.
Josh Crouch: No, I think we covered from some soup to nuts there what you would expect and their target audience, how it works. I think I think there’s a lot of.
new businesses or businesses that are young, or maybe just haven’t grown as much that could really take some burden off of having to do some of this stuff and get a little, maybe some better financial insights month over month. So that way they can focus on the things that are like, like actually selling and getting more leads and all that kind of
Garret Baird: stuff.
Right? Most of our customers guys start from spreadsheets and we are the next step from spreadsheets. Okay. And much to their.
Tersh Blissett: Cool Garrett. We really appreciate it. If you have any questions neat.com and or you can reach out to me, but I’m just gonna send you to Garrett. I, we really appreciate everything.
If you’re listening to this[00:43:30] remember if you don’t already subscribe, subscribe leave us a review, a five star. That’s what we, that’s kinda what we want is fives. But yeah, I’m all joking aside. If you have any questions about anything we’d like to hear more about a particular topic please reach out to us podcast service, business.com service business mastery.com.
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Josh Crouch: Thank
Garret Baird: you for
Tersh Blissett: listening to this episode of service business mastery. Now that you are equipped
Garret Baird: with essential
Tersh Blissett: business advice from this impactful conversation, you are one step closer to becoming the successful owner of your. If this episode has been helpful to your business journey, don’t forget to subscribe to the show, leave a rating and share it with other owners as well.
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