Sian Kelly founded Inform Accounting eight years ago, after making a move from industry. Her practice has 16 staff, and they’re growing all the time.
‘We found cloud accounting software early on and that was revolutionary for a small practice like us,’ says Sian. A main focus for Sian’s practice is Xero and the add-ons. That’s how they discovered iwoca.
She says, ‘We found our niche early. You can’t do this nowadays, but we focused on the fact that were using the cloud so it helped us to get a good start.’ Sian is clear that she never saw her firm growing like it has. Originally it was a lifestyle business so she could manage her work around her family, being there for her children’s assemblies rather than zooming up and down the motorway. ‘The big question for us,’ she says, ‘is always “where do we go from here?”.’
Sian first discovered iwoca at Xerocon. ‘It was so quick and easy to set up. We tried it with a client who was desperate for funding, and it was really quick to get in place. It's so simple. The team are really responsive, too.’ Sian tells us that a major attraction for her is that you can dip in and out with no penalties. She says, ‘If someone has got a short-term funding gap they need to fill, it’s great’.
'Going to the banks would take ages. Even with some of the other funding platforms, you still have to supply a lot of information, but because iwoca has got the links with Xero and we’ve got a relationship with them, we can have a decision in 24 hours.'
iwoca is on a mission to unlock the £10 billion finance gap that exists for small businesses in the UK. Sian tells us that some of her business clients’ would certainly have struggled if they’d had to wait for traditional finance. ‘If they weren’t able to bridge those cash flow gaps, they might not have been able to continue trading. Sometimes businesses leave it too late.’
Helping small business owners is Sian’s number one driver at Inform Accounting. Working in industry for big household names gave her the experience and information that small business owners don’t necessarily have. ‘Our whole philosophy is to help small business owners. To give them management information as they grow, and to help with cash flow forecasting and funding gaps. Hopefully we’ve filled a bit of a gap in the market, and have done something different to what other firms do.’