Help us understand what features you'd like to see in a Monzo business account!

No, only 100 people have been invited to the test so far. Definitely not investors only. There’s no point nagging their chat system as they can’t bump you up the list sadly, we’ve just got to the patient.

I’m also super eager to get on it, fingers crossed it won’t be too much longer :crossed_fingers:

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Hey @Theblondswede :wave:

We’re still working hard on this! I’m sorry it’s been a while, we’ve got some things we need to sort out in the background, but we’ll be ready to offer more accounts soon!

Right now, we’ve still only got our first 100 initial businesses - we’ve not added anyone since. They’re a broad mix of businesses, in the hope that we get to understand lots of different use cases, and hopefully build something you’ll love!

We’re really, really excited to show you what we’ve been working on, and we’re still reading every suggestion here in this thread, and the rest of the community.

Thanks so much for bearing with us - we really appreciate it. We’ll absolutely let you know as soon as there’s an account ready for you :blush:

Let me know if you’ve any other questions!

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Online Based International E-Commerce Specialist Accountancy Firm LLP

Currency Exchange, Bookkeeping Software Integration

TransferWise Bank, Pandle Bookkeeping Software

It isn’t Monzo :man_shrugging:

Hold Multiple Currencies, Pandle Bookkeeping Software Integration

  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
    Fitness business owner, limited company

  2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)
    All of the above, also knowing exactly how much is spent on utilities, rent, broadband. Love how Monzo personal shows a snapshot. Having an active profit and loss summary along with easy way to attach receipts to payments.

  3. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?
    Currently with Counting Up and integrate with Xero to make it easier for accountant.

  4. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
    I like how it gives a profit and loss snapshot, its receipt upload function, and categorisation option for income and expenditure with notes feature. How it can export from it to Xero.

But its not as easy to use as Monzo and miss the clarity within Monzo. It has a number of charges such as currency charges (I have US software subscriptions and clients pay from abroad).

  1. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Auto categorisation of transactions overtime, so it recognises what is sales income, building costs, staff wages, utilities etc. That would be ace.

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I’d like direct integration with Square
Also the ability to designate what the payments were for e.g. equipment, materials, personal etc

I have the intention to set up a side business to carry me through the winter as I am primarily a roofer (sole trader) but also get lots of maintenance handyman stuff as well. The second business is going to be on completely different lines so would like a separate business account/category for tax purposes.

At the moment I’m using Cashplus business account and spreadsheets for records. They charge £2 a pop to get any cash out of the wall which is a real bind and after 3 transfers a month its 99p a go!
I use izettle as my online payments merchant, so by time they keep my money for two days and then cashplus a further two days money can get a bit tight.

I’d be looking for zero cashpoint fees and quick transfer to my account.

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New limited company contractor here. I just finished comparing a number of online-focused business current account providers and settled on Starling Bank to open an account with. I’ll provide some insight into why I chose them and what I am looking for in a business account.

I considered the following providers:

  • Cashplus
  • ANNA
  • Tide
  • CountingUp
  • CardOneMoney
  • Acorn
  • StarlingBank
  • Coconut

1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
Limited company contractor, just starting out. I offer contract services in market research, data analysis and consulting. I intend to sell market research reports online in the future too.

2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Just starting out so far with getting the accountants sorted - I compared a number of providers there and went with one that offers FreeAgent as part of their service. That accountant offered a company formation service as a (paid-for) convenience, including business bank account opening with either Metro Bank or Cashplus. Pain point: Cashplus said they could give 12 months free banking but reneged on their offer after I’d opened the account because it’s only supposed to be available if you sign up through a different partner site. They refused to apply the offer to my account but were perfectly happy for me to close that account and open a totally new account with a new card sent to me, just to get the offer. From my point of view this was bad customer service and that’s why I’ve ended up looking for a better provider, including checking whether Monzo does business banking.

3. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

FreeAgent.

4. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

I wanted to find a provider that offered the following:

  • Low cost or free banking (Starling offers zero monthly fees)
  • Possibility of getting an overdraft (Starling offers this)
  • Interest on balance (none of the online-focused providers offers this)
  • High or unlimited maximum account balance (Starling is the only provider offering an unlimited account balance)
  • FSCS protection (Starling is the only provider offering this, although the others generally hold your funds in a ring-fenced account with e.g. Barclays Bank, so it’s protected through that).
  • No bank transfer fees (Starling, Coconut and ANNA offer this)
  • No fees for direct debits or standing orders (CountingUp, CardOneMoney and Acorn charge for this, other providers don’t)
  • Low foreign transactions fee (Starling give the Mastercard exchange rate and charge only 0.4% on the transaction)
  • Ability to receive payments from international customers (only Starling provides this).

Coconut and Tide were the next best options. Coconut is a high-tech platform, prepaid card provider so it comes with a maximum account balance of £100,000 and the funds are actually held in another bank, but otherwise its offering is very similar and competitive with Starling. Tide is also free, but charges 20p per bank transfer between your account and non-Tide accounts. The only downside of Starling is that it charges £60 to replace your card if you lose it outside the UK, for some weird reason.

I did not compare other features such as fees for handling cash deposits, getting statements and letters, etc.

5. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

See above. The one key feature would need to be the cost especially over the first year of operation of my company. Many providers provide free business banking over 6-24 months for start-ups and Monzo would need to consider this if there is going to be a monthly fee for Monzo’s business accounts.

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It would be good, especially for self employed, to be able to mark a transaction as either “income” or an “expense” and then to have some sort of data that shows information about that months/quarter/years profit/loss so far based on income and expenses.

I’d love to have an account that was ready for Making Tax Digital.

What I like about my current bank is that it is free. What I dislike is that the savings have no interest, so my business

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  1. LTD company
  2. Taxes and the expense of paying an accountant.
  3. Xero accounting.
  4. Slow customer service. Nothing like the ease and simplicity of dealing with Monzo support through the app!
  5. The only thing I would need that the personal account does not have is the ability to easily receive international transfers without TransferWise or any other intermediary.

Matt

1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Sole trader. I run this in my spare time

2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Probably the same with most people, taxes

3. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

Currently use Starling Business and am exporting data by hand to FreeAgent.

4. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

Starling Bank isn’t too bad. I’m not a fan of the UI for starters. I much prefer the Monzo UI as I’ve been used to it for a while. I’ve also had Barclays & HSBC bank accounts in the past but mainly left them as I had finished their free banking period. I’ve tried Tide before but had slow service and looking at most of the comments on this post, others have had similar issues!

5. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Low/no fees, FreeAgent connection and maybe a feature added to pots where it takes a percentage of incoming funds and sets them aside to make it easier for tax?

1 Like
  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Director of Limited Company

  • What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Preparing for tax, paying to get it sorted and submitted.

  • What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

I used Starling, but they stopped supporting me as a non-resident, so now I use Tide for banking. I use FreeAgent for accounting and directly invoice via my SaaS apps. I also use Apple Numbers.

  • What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

Frankly, it’s not as slick as my Monzo personal account, and the differential annoys me. Would love to use Monzo Business.
Tide also doesn’t integrate with FreeAgent, as they seem to focus on Xero.
Tide DOES offer a really good web interface, though, meaning you can stop squinting into an iPhone when you need to spend more than a few minutes managing the account.
Starling and Tide are both free, which is lovely, and had low, predictable fees.

  • If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Integration with FreeAgent (did I mention FreeAgent?).

  1. We are a film production company.
  2. Payroll, taxes and invoicing are all straightforward for us. Expenses and bills-in are the main painpoints. The main issue is with bills in management and manual payment entry no matter what bill system is used. Bills-in need to be cross-verified by the requestor (we use a lot of freelancers) before being passed to accounts for payment. There are no intuitive easy to use tools that we can find that makes this workflow easy in a digital way. There are either expense management like expensify which isn’t brilliant for invoices from other businesses or freelancers. Or there are PO systems that require more admin that you might expect. Ideally there would be a software where invoices can be emailed to - where it pulls the data from the PDF using OCR. It then places that into a queue for data accuracy approval (with a built in ability to tell the system where to look for the data next time it gets that template for future accuracy improvement) (with this step skippable as an option) it then places the data into a requester approval queue - either assigning it based on data printed on the invoice and taken from the OCR or being assignable and transferable between team members. What would be even more awesome is a drop down field that takes data from a project management api (zapier etc) to allow for project assignment regardless of the project management tool being used. Once approved it then moves the data into the bookkeeping software. And then awesomely places the data into a payment queue. Accounts can then select a payment date and it automatically schedules the payment via monzo without further data entry. It either already knows the correct bank details due to the supplier data or it requires new bank details to be entered for a first time payment - with a built in fraud protection that requires accounts to assert that they have verified the bank details manually through some other means than the invoice data. And for further awesome it auto checks fund requirements for assigned future payments and does clever alert/re-scheduling if there are issues.

The other pain point is shoot expenses and cards. Our staff and often trusted freelancers need access to finances when out on a shoot. Car hire companies require the driver to have a credit card etc. We can’t use our bank for this because we cant allow access to the main accounts to staff because we cant create pots. So we use fairfx. But fairfx doesnt have feed integration with our bookkeeping and it requires named cards, so we can end up needing quite a few. Particularly if we want to give a card to a freelancer. Every shoot might need a new card for a different name. The ability to have a live monitoring with a daily spend from a fixed pot; or even the ability to create different spend levels based on different business types would be awesome. Think for example a producer giving a card to a freelancer for a shoot with the ability to set rules such as: This card can spend up to £50/day on food businesses. It can spend £500 once on a car hire business or even a specific car hire business. It can spend a total of £30 a day on any other business type. Anything outside of this creates a decline; but also sends an approval request to the producer who can cross check it and then allow it for a repeat attempt…

  1. We use Quickbooks online for bookkeeping with a direct bank feed. We use Scoro for invoicing and purchase management. We use fairfx for staff company cards.

4… We love bank feeds. We love reliability with large money pots. We dislike antiquated functionality.

  1. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?
    There are two answers in point 2.

Thanks
Rob

I forgot something… With our existing bank every time you make a payment and change the reference, it creates a duplicate entry for that payee in the existing payee list - one for each reference. Which is super annoying when you want to put invoice reference numbers in the reference field - A supplier who’s submitted 20 invoices… yep, you now have 20 seperate payee entries for that supplier. And what’s more annoying? They have a maximum to your payee list: so it bumps off other suppliers when it happens - causing the hassle of re-entering details for existing suppliers. And so we now use a generic reference that doesnt detail the invoice: making it harder for the recipients to know where to assign the payments; which can cause confusion if an invoice has been missed and they start assigning payments to the wrong invoices and chasing payments for invoices we have as paid, etc etc.

1 Like
  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Subscription based service. Limited Company

  1. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Scheduling and making payments and managing expenses.

  1. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

Banking through Barclays, invoicing and bookkeeping through Xero, Direct debits via GoCardless.

  1. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

Managing employee access to the bank account is a nightmare. The fees for basic functionality such as the API are also unwelcome. There is no quikc way to schedule and make payments for invoices in Xero.

  1. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Easy to manage both via the web or app. A real benefit would be easy payment integration with Xero. And of course real-time updates as with the personal Monzo app. managing access for several people would also be very useful.

I do all my business accounting in Clear Books. The only things I do with my Barclays account are log in to retreive statement (to import into Clear Books) and set up / make payments. Ideally I would like bank account to auto import to Clear Books but I have security concerns with the Barclays intergation.

  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Business/strategy consultancy, limited company

  1. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Expenses. We do lots of travel, both within the UK and internationally, managing expenses is a big task (e.g. correct input, linking to projects, forex, charging on to clients where necessary).

Taxes, particularly VAT.

  1. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

Freeagent, Transferwise, Expensify, HSBC online banking

  1. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

Reliable. The online banking interface is a bit clunky. Charges are high, hence pushing to use e.g. Transferwise, but I’d ideally like to be able to do international transfers from within the bank account as it makes accounting easier.

  1. If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Bank feed into Freeagent is a must; we will likely move to Xero in the nearish future as the business grows. I would love for card payments to be auto-categorised and for receipt scanning/attachement, VAT input, tagging, etc, to be done on the fly within the app (i.e. taking features from Expensify, but having this done directly within the banking app for speed/accuracy reasons, then to fully tie this up with Freeagent/Xero at the backend). We’ve checked out Expend, which is a great concept along these lines, but currently not feasible for us due to lack of Freeagent support. As above, I’d ideally like one bank account for all finance needs, rather than have multiple accounts/services.

  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

We have a group of companies with 4 ltd companies underneath - IT, Software Publishing, IFA, Platform

  • What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Expense cards - we currently ask our team to set up monzo accounts
Payroll - we need to set up template payment runs.
Taxes - we need to track VAT and CT
Invoices - we need to reconcile invoices and accept payment

  • What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?

Quickbooks Online

  • What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

Everything is complex - expensive to run, no support, complex control - have to buy Bankline for control of users - too many cards to run the accounts.

  • If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

User control - adding users and freezing them quickly.

  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
    Sole director (and employee!) of Limited Company
  • What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)
  1. Managing receipts/expenses. 2) Knowing how much of the money in my account is truly mine (and not owing to the taxman etc.)
  • What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances? FreeAgent (really good - my previous accountant used spreadsheets which was a nightmare). For expenses I have worked hard to reduce the admin. I now use a Monzo personal account and the Monzo API. When there is a new Monzo transaction, a webhook calls an Amazon Lambda Function which puts this transaction in FreeAgent. This means that when I get the receipt in the shop, I can attach it to the transaction in FreeAgent straight away ( I use Dropbox app to scan and name a file something like 2019-07-16 5.40 z.pdf for £5.40 spent on the 16th with zero VAT. Another Lambda picks this up and puts it in FreeAgent. The Dropbox scanning app is really good - much better than the FreeAgent one. Using Dropbox also means that if I buy something online, I can save the email using my Mac as PDF in the Dropbox directory - which simplifies things The flags I use are z (zero vat), v(normal vat) and c (cash - this was not paid from my bank account but by me personally in cash and the company needs to reimburse me). With Monzo, there is not the horror of matching expenses when the dates are different (as there is in my Barclays Business Account). This all works really well but is a somewhat Heath Robinson solution created by me. I have cut down my monthly admin from two full evenings a month to half an hour.
  • What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
    Only daily feed from Barclays into FreeAgent (not real time). Transactions often do not appear til some days later.
  • If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be?
    Real-time feed of transactions into FreeAgent
    Are there any other features you look for in a BCA? no
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Having recently gone through the pain of realising that the reason my salary is not flagged in my personal account is because my payments were standing orders and not BACS payments, could you ensure that any salary payments from my Monzo business account are flagged as salary payments into my Monzo personal account?

Particularly useful for budgeting etc.

2 Likes
  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

My business is a new fintech app which charges via a subscription. It is a limited company with two directors, no other employees at present.

  • What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)

Keeping on top of expenses was horrendous in my previous business: the bank we used couldn’t link receipts via photos etc, and we had to do everything on paper/cross reference and validate manually each month. With quite a number of people with authority to spend money it was really tricky. Of the 130 staff at least 20 had business bank cards, no access to statements, no categorisation etc which is pretty poor nowadays.
Also as a finance business which lent to SMEs, sometimes the deals went wrong. We could then reclaim VAT against advances made on defaulted cases, which made for a tricky inflow/outflow of VAT on goods and services. We also offered HP and lease, both of which treat VAT differently. The banking and accounting apps had very poor integration with the DD/collections system, so a lot of manual intervention was required to ensure that the correct VAT/tax payments were being made on roughly 250 new deals per month and thousands of incoming payments, some of which had VAT on and some of which didn’t. The finance team was a small army and I don’t think it should have been necessary.

  • What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?
    Xero accounting, haven’t set up a bank account for this company yet because I’d like to wait for Monzo to come online! Depending on how long it takes I’m considering either Tide or Starling.

  • What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?

My previous experience of business banking was poor because we had multiple people who needed regular access to accounts at various levels and responsibilities, and the process for arranging that was painful, and the need for a card reader to set up new payees was also a bit clunky.
There was a propensity for the bank to implement anti-fraud rules which centred around payments of certain size (ie transfer more than £50k and you need to call first) - this caused an issue because payments of that scale were happening pretty much daily, so the bank failed to understand the business and adapt to it - I understand the ‘safety first’ approach but on at least four occasions the bank effectively shut the business down and revoked all access to the bank until the CEO phoned in to release access - on one of those occasions he was on holiday in Australia, so it took three days to get in touch and arrange for him to make the call at an ungodly hour (for him) when the UK helpdesk was open. Four days without being able to transact any business cost us a fortune.

  • If you could request one key feature for your business current account, what would it be? Are there any other features you look for in a BCA?

Fast response, either within the app or via the support desk. Previous experience of this has been extremely negative.
Not sure if this would be considered a feature as such, but a bank that looks after the little guys is really important. You can have a £20m turn over and still not get much support from one of the traditional banks - the bulk of companies in the UK are miniscule by comparison to that, so a bank that understands the needs of a smaller organisation and provides a platform to grow is crucial. Whether that’s by making targeted recommendations to reduce costs or just by allowing the account to be linked to an array of other providers to help reduce manual intervention and keep costs as low as possible (and not completely rinsing businesses purely for storing their money) it would be a breath of fresh air