Cloud software was key in enabling Gregory Wellman and Felix Meller to start their own business. Leaving secure jobs in London City, the two started Agora Talent from their kitchen tables to provide a superior cloud-based recruitment experience while staying agile as a business.
In their previous roles, the two would often dream of what life would look like if they were to run their own business. Their shared vision included being able to work remotely with full IT access, amend invoices for clients in minutes not weeks, and have a bank that would be a partner, not a blocker.
Startup banking with Metro
Once Agora Talent was set up, the never-ending stream of startup admin hit them hard at first. Like many first-time founders, the time and effort required to open a business bank account came as a shock. At the time Gregory was frustrated at having to wait for weeks for an appointment, “we just didn’t have that time, we needed to move as quickly as possible”.
“We had big plans, but needed a business bank account before we could do anything else”
Felix Meller, Co-Founder, Agora Talent
The two soon discovered Metro Bank, a business challenging the big banks with a focus on customer service. Dog-friendly, long trading hours and super-fast account opening times. With documents in hand, Gregory and Felix walked into Metro Bank’s London Cheapside store and left two hours later, cards in hand, ready to get to work. Securing their business bank account quickly meant they could start generating revenue immediately.
Expenses, expenses, expenses
With job board subscriptions, meetings in coffee shops and daily business travel, the receipts soon racked up. It was now critical to get their accounts in order. Choosing Xero came down to being able to automate a lot of their accounting with a direct bank feed and work on the move. For Gregory, the process has become so efficient he can now complete all his expenses and bank reconciliation on his daily commute.
With Xero, Felix can now focus on growing the business, not day-to-day bookkeeping. “When you are talking to candidates they’ve got a 12-hour window when they may be able to talk or meet. So outside of that is really where you want to park all of your admin. Cloud-based software allows us to grow with complete flexibility.”
Now a little over six months in, Gregory and Felix have picked up the keys to their first office. They are also looking to hire their first employee. Felix only really has one regret about the whole process. “If we had known it was going to be this easy, we would have done it sooner!”
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