Making Sure Your FinTech Stacks Up

Fintechs are helping finance functions to transform, drive down costs and generate data. Most importantly, they allow CFOs to focus on adding value. These were some of the themes explored at a recent CFO Magazine lunchtime live event, which featured executives and finance chiefs from some of Australia’s most exciting financial tech firms.

During the live webinar, panellists delivered fascinating insights into the different technologies they use to support and operate their businesses and finance functions.

Daniel Kniaz is the founder and CEO of DiviPay, an all-in-one, expense management tool through which businesses can instantly issue virtual corporate cards, pay bills, control spending and automate expense reporting. It embeds companies’ expense policy directly into the payment mechanism, so employees can only make payments that are within the expense policy.

DiviPay’s tech stack includes accounting software Xero, HubSpot for sales and marketing support and Zendesk for customer support. Its underlying technology is built on AWS.

Receipt management platform Slyp, a DiviPay partner, is one of Australia’s most exciting fintechs. It partners with banks and point-of-sale (POS) operators to directly link customers and merchants, what CFO Ashley Davies calls the ‘SKU and the who’.

Slyp has developed patent-pending technology that standardises digital receipts and ingests data from POS systems and bank feeds.

“Within four seconds, our bank-grade technology pushes the receipt into your banking app, with digital receipts sent in almost real time – from beep to receipt,” says Davies.

Slyp’s internal tech stack comprises AWS, Xero, DiviPay for expenses, AirWallex, Workable, & Bob for PeopleTech and TripActions.

Jacqueline Purcell, CFO of Cloud-based HR management platform Deputy, says the business is constantly focused on making it simple for its technology to connect to other common fintechs and financial services partners.

“Simplicity is the key as Deputy grows, to help customers generate insights from their tech stack’s combined data.”

How Deputy’s Tech Stacks up:

ERP – Netsuite

Billing – Zuora

Accounts Payable – Tipalti

Monthly Close Automation – FloQast 

Expense Management – Expensify

HRIS – Bamboo HR

Applicant Tracking System – Lever

Employee Engagement – Culture Amp 

Contract Management – Ironclad

Security / Vendor Management – OneTrust

Analytics – Tableau 

Travel – TripActions

Compensation Management – Pave

Fintech debt collection agency, InDebted is transforming consumer debt collection and is making a substantial investment in its finance tech stack. InDebted is exploring its ERP options and currently uses Xero, QuickBooks and Fathom for its global consolidated financial reporting. 

“As a global business with a presence across seven countries, we’re focused on building transparency and visibility as we scale,” says Vice- President of Finance and Operations Ben Watiwat. “Hypergrowth in the business means hypergrowth in employee count and ensuring we increase efficiency across the recruitment cycle.”

InDebted has implemented an applicant tracking system called Lever and its HR information system, Sapling, handles onboarding globally and provides a single source of truth for managers and staff. TruePlan facilitates headcount planning, Lightyear manages accounts payable processing, and Fathom manages accounting consolidation, budgeting and forecasting.

Watiwat says, as InDebted’s inaugural finance leader, he has the advantage of being able to implement the latest digital technologies to support the business as it scales.

Looking ahead

Thinking about the future, panellists said they expect 2022 to be a high-growth year, with many implementing processes and governance structures to support the scale up of their operations.

Watiwat told the audience it’s important for all businesses to recognise the inherent link between customer experience and financial outcomes. “People now expect businesses to provide services in a digital-first way and it’s critical to meet this need to be successful.”

On a similar theme, Purcell says it’s essential for businesses to become customer centric. “We have a really diverse customer base and we have to understand the different needs of the businesses and workers that rely on our platform.”

Coming back to first principles, Kniaz says tech businesses must understand that good software needs to solve a problem that’s really important to customers.

“This means spending time talking to customers. From a product perspective, the roadmap is often in our users’ heads. The people who spend hours on the platform are the ones who think about our product and what they want to see next, just as much as we do. Our job is to extract that information and build a product that solves their problems. This builds competitive advantage.”

Kniaz expects the Australian fintech cohort to continue to swell in 2022. “International venture capital businesses are going to look more seriously at Australia, given they have evidence Australian companies can provide returns on a global scale.”

He expects angel investing in early-stage companies to ramp up. This may be fuelled by people who were early hires at tech leaders, such as Afterpay or Canva, using their employee equity to invest in the next cohort of start-ups.

Says Watiwat: “There’s lots of capital looking for a home. Investors want to fund fintechs that align with the thematic trends they have identified.” He also points to the re-bundling of fintechs as an emerging trend, using payment tech leader Square’s acquisition of buy-now-pay-later pioneer, Afterpay as an example.

Turning back to the finance function, Purcell says next year, her focus will be on automation. “We want to free up the team to work on value-added tasks, implementing new technology and optimising existing systems and tools to enable them to do that.”

Tech stacks will continue to underpin successful organisations. It will be fascinating to watch the next generation of fintechs that emerge, and the new ways they support CFOs and their teams.