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


(James Berry) #21
  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Limited company, single employee

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

I use Xero as accounts software, so reliable accurate bank feeds are essential for reconciliation. Xero handles invoices, VAT etc.

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

Xero, ReceiptBank

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

My current bank services from Metro are pretty good to be honest; low fees with good bank feed. Foreign currency transactions are the biggest pain though as they are charged.
Metro also won’t let me make payments of more than £20,000 a day so I have had to split transactions or ring them.
Making payments in general is not very slick, even in-app

  • 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?

(Mark Webster) #22

Hey Jordan,

I’m super excited to see what kind of disruption you guys can achieve in this sector.

  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
    I’m the co-owner of a limited company. We are a 100% online business, selling video training courses and making money from affiliate marketing.

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

The first is around accepting and making foreign currency payments. We bill in USD and our payment processor (Stripe) will only pay out to a US based USD account. I tried to set up a USD account with Band of Scotland but it was a UK based USD account and thus was useless as it didn’t have a US account number and routing code. Amazon payments in USD also work like this. Currently we us Transferwise Borderless to solve it. It’s good, but it would be much nicer to have this functionality within our current account. We have similar problems with Amazon Germany and Canada. Transferwise borderless solves the germany problem and allows us to receive EUR natively. They don’t have receiving functionality in Canada, so we use Payoneer here. Their tech is a bit dated and fees for FX are not good. This is also tricky with Paypal where most of our transactions are USD based and we cannot withdraw to our UK bank account without suffering massive FX fees.

So the ability to have a USD, EUR, CAD, AUD account that can receive FX as if it was a native bank account would be great.

I’ve been reading the book ‘Profit First’ by Mike Michalowicz and he presents a great way to manage your finances. Basically you create different accounts for Costs, Profit, Tax savings, emergency fund etc. It would be amazing to have distribution rule for income so that a certain % gets distributed to each account. It would also be great if you can apply lockdowns so that I can set one account to take 7 days for me to unlock the ability to transfer from. This will stop me spending from my tax savings.

I like the Revolut business card functionality, but I’d like to have more visiblity over which account gets charged for a purchase. I’d love to see Monzo pull a similar feature which allows you to control your debit card limits, default billing currencies etc.

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

Xero for bookkeeping. I think a deep integration here is essential.

We use transferwise, payoneer, revolut and paypal.

  1. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
    The FX fees are really high. There isn’t anything more than basic functionality. I’d love to create new sub-accounts with different rules to my current account.

  2. 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?

Faux-local foreign currency sub-accounts.


(Ben ) #23

1. What do you do?
Currently a limited company. Three Directors.

2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances?
I think taxes for me are a big pain points, as well as expenses. There’s three different directors using the company bank account, and it requires a lot of organisation to manage these expenses and get receipts, especially when employees ‘forget’. I would also like to be able to set aside money for HMRC, wages, etc so it’s easy to partition finances.

3. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?
Currently, use QuickBooks and Lloyds Bank - I think both of them could be improved, and QuickBooks gets expensive :man_facepalming:

4. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
Like: Their customer service is impeccable, always willing to help and resolve issues, very accommodating to smaller businesses, understand the needs for businesses and will always try and get that across in their messaging or services.

Dislike: The account set up is a massive, massive hassle. It needs cards to be authorised via electronic machines sent in the post, about 12 letters to each Director. One of the Directors still hasn’t set his card/account up yet and will ring it through to the others when he needs to authorise payment.

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?
Something with a simple UI, nothing too complicated to work around. I know it’s been mentioned already, but definitely creating pots for tax, wages, etc and, hey, why not file taxes automatically :wink: - that WOULD make my life easier!! My number one request is that I spend hours navigating around my banking applications at the moment (not my personal one because it’s with Monzo :smile: :smile: ) so it needs good UI.


(Dave Cross) #24

FreeAgent looks like something from the early 2000’s, but not surprising considering it’s owned by RBS.

FreeAgent looked pretty much the same before RBS bought it.


(Dave Cross) #25

Software developer, working as a contractor through a limited company.

My biggest hassle is the monthly session downloading data from HSBC’s web site and uploading it to FreeAgent. Which is to say, I don’t really have any big pain points. I just have this nagging suspicion that things could be so much better.

The HSBC web site and FreeAgent. FreeAgent is supplied by my accountants and they also have access to it.

Nothing I can put my finger on. But every time I use the HSBC web site, something happens that reminds me that it’s a very thing layer of webby paint over the top of a huge COBOL codebase from the 1970s.

Seamless integration between FreeAgent and my bank account. Perhaps even FreeAgent-like features inside my bank account.


(Andre Borie) #26

My biggest hassle is the monthly session downloading data from HSBC’s web site and uploading it to FreeAgent. Which is to say, I don’t really have any big pain points. I just have this nagging suspicion that things could be so much better.

I think either Salt Edge or TrueLayer supports HSBC so you can build the integration yourself. Just fetch the transactions from the account and then generate an OFX file which you can submit to FreeAgent via its API (it’s smart enough to figure out & ignore duplicates so no harm in uploading the same transactions multiple times).


(Duncan) #27

Some non-obvious factors around integration with the current account are key. When you run a small business your pay tends to not be regular in either size, date, or even mechanism. Pay will be made up of a combination of salary and dividends, with salary potentially being relatively minimal and thus requiring supplementing from dividends. Dividends tend to be paid less frequently, perhaps quarterly. And while the minimal salary may be more stable the dividend will fluctuate. Therefore the integration between the business and current accounts should take this into account, allowing this fluctuating income to be “smoothed” - basically hiding the complexity of the fluctuations. At the moment this process is fairly horrible for a few reasons. Firstly, various aspects of the current account break when you send several thousand pounds through it temporarily, en route to a pot. Additionally, with my current bank at least, setting up a BACS Direct Credit for just one person is… “bureaucratically prohibitive”. This means that a transfer done on, say, the first of the month in order to cover BACS Direct Debits won’t actually be there in time, and the payment will fail. So easy access to set up BACS Direct Credits is also key. One clean way that the former part could be solved is to allow crediting of pots directly (i.e. give them - or at least one of them - an account number and sort code). I have further details in a few posts on another thread (one, two, three)

Additionally, for me Freeagent integration is pretty essential, the deeper the better (not just the accounts, but things like sending a VAT payment etc.


(Gary ) #28
  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
    Small limited company run by myself and my partner both equal partners in the company. (No other challenger banks offer two directors -starling - tide etc)

  2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)
    Having to do a lot of third party apps for budgeting, invoicing etc should be able to do straight from app.

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

  4. What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
    Poor communication, lots of hoops to jump though for simple tasks, high costs for small business account.

  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?
    Invoice direct from app
    Quickbook intergration


(Tom Halloran) #29

I’ve used Tide in the past and I don’t rate it at all, my two main gripes with it (which I’m certain will never happen with Monzo) are:

  1. When you can’t pay for something because it is a pre-paid card. Insanely annoying. Means you have to pay with another (personal) card and then have to correct your business accounts manually to reflect it. FYI you also can’t collect train tickets with it!
  2. You don’t get notified when someone pays you money, and there is no way to turn this feature on. Seriously, in 2018 a mobile-only bank can’t notify you for an incoming payment?

Anyway. I’ve also used Freeagent for a while, which I’ve found great


(Richard Bairwell) #30
  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?

Ltd company providing software development.

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

Slowness (with Cater Allen - no instant updates/pending transactions, in/outbound transactions take days). Instant notification of payments etc would be brilliant.

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

Cater Allen’s web front end (horrible/outdated/basic), their “debit/charge card” and my accountants E-Crunch Ltd (aka ‘Crunch’) who receive an API feed of my transactions every week into their system.

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

Slowness.

  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?

1 key feature I would like would be API support (notifications/webhooks would be nice, but at least an API can be polled).

For me, these are the MINIMUM I need from a Business account (for my Ltd)

  • Direct debit support (paying out of the account - so like most personal accounts)
  • Ability to receive bank transfers from UK banks, Paypal, GoCardless and similar
  • CSV export for accountants
  • Ideally ability to produce PDF statements for proof of identity (such as registration at wholesaler shops etc)
  • Debit card or similar

Nice to have:

  • Up to date transactions list (currently with Cater Allen and they are slow…)
  • Faster payments in/outbound support (again, CA have their own timescales)
  • Notifications/API/Webhooks on payment receipts etc
  • Web front end (if I’m doing business stuff, I’ll be using my computer - not my phone - and am probably doing the accounts/bulk payments etc)
  • Ability to add at least one ‘read-only’ user (such as accountant) to able to view/check statements/account
  • Ability to have a weekly/monthly transaction list sent to one or more people (I know CA currently sends copies of my transactions to my accountants Crunch)
  • API for reading transactions etc without having to be FCA etc certified
  • Low cost/free for basic usage (i.e. < 20 transactions/expenses per month, but no interest etc - fees for foreign currencies etc are allowed)
  • Support for international payments without having to have custom reference numbers.
  • Accepting cheques

Not bothered about:

  • Cash deposits/withdrawals
  • Issuing cheques (I think I’ve written 3 in the 10 years+ of the company and I couldn’t even tell you where the cheque book is or if CA have issued me one since we switched to them)

(Ben Trigg) #31

Limited Company.

  • Bank statements
  • Sending & receiving international payments with low fee
  • Scheduled payments
  • API access
  • Direct Debit
  • Notifications when payments received
  • Faster Payments
  • Web App
  • Team members

(Tom) #32

I’d need some kind of statement to be available from Pots, too.


(William Brown) #33

The problem I have is I only have a AIB business account in Ireland look to the UK forget it no one will give me one and only transferwise for business is all I have and that gets a debit card in December so I need a business account that works like monzo personal accounts work so I can pay money out direct debits and standing orders and debit card transactions. Apple Pay too Pay cash in is a big issue with businesses that take cash but to not be blocked from having an account just cause of credit score being low as that doesn’t say much about how the account is run. I’m a sole trader I get frequently told just use personal account you don’t need a business account


(Craig A Rodway) #34

:raised_hands:

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

Web/software development on a freelance/side hustle basis, as a sole trader, alongside my day job.

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

Not coming from a business or finance background, everything to do with business finances and tax is an extra ‘thing’ to have to learn and get a grip of, which is often overwhelming and distracting. Especially as I’m just one person, and this is in addition to my day job with limited time. Material to supposedly help in this area assumes a certain level of knowledge which I just don’t have yet.

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

Tide/Starling Bank, and Pandle. CSV imports once a month.

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

I like Tide’s transaction handling - search, filtering, and custom categorisation. Custom categories are very useful. I don’t like how payments take forever to arrive and that they’re not a proper bank.

I like how Starling’s an actual bank and will cost less, and am planning to start using them more instead of Tide.

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 cost. Doesn’t have to be free, but low cost is important. I can go for months without receiving any payments so I would begrude a monthly fee.


#35

If I could request one feature it’d be an excellent API.

If I could request another it’d be excellent analytics and reporting. :slightly_smiling_face:


(William Brown) #36

I’m same my Irish aib account starts with two free years then raft of charges though limited use can cost more in long run as quarterly charges etc add up business pay more to subsidise the other customers who get free or lower cost banking that’s always been banks way charge businesses higher than consumers but consumers get hit with hidden fees like unpaid direct debits etc etc and overdraft fees that eye watering so we need a bank that turns banking on it’s head for consumers and businesses and saves us money and that means more money for business to invest


(William Brown) #37

Monzo should say yes to all business and personal customers no barrier to banking no word credit etc go against you when you get a mobile the phone network can’t say no to you using their SIM card but contact service they can deny so it should be same with bank account for personal use and bank account for business use regardless of legal status or financial history or events you went through in life


(benjaminlbowles) #38

Great news, and potentially more complicated than a regular consumer account, but in my world I see the following…

Necessary features for Full Monzo:

  • Support for single-owner Ltd, multi-owner/multi-director Ltd, Ltd owned by Ltd (subsidiary), sole trader, LLP etc
  • Multiple businesses for one Monzo user (like me I’m a Sole Trader, and a director of four Ltd’s - all with separate banking)
  • Annoyingly, a better way to deposit cheques - Post Office
  • A better way to deposit cash - much much higher limit (i.e none), but prepared to pay
  • High faster payment limits - up to £100k in one transaction, and high daily limits
  • Standing Order management (Tide!)
  • Direct Debit management
  • CSV/QIF export
  • Bank statements as PDF (monthly)
  • Option for printed bank statement - I know, I know, but some lenders won’t accept online PDFs as originals
  • A simple/quick AML & KYC process
  • Current Account Switch Service
  • UK account number and IBAN/BIC numbers for GBP payments
  • No dongles/card readers/legacy 2FA stuff

All of the above is everything a legacy business bank does, albeit poorly or in a badly designed manner.

Ideal world features to convince me to switch:

  • Support for plugging into lenders, credit cards and open banking
  • Overdrafts
  • Pots
  • Multiple monzo users (& debit cards) to access the same business account
  • Apple Pay
  • No silly invoicing in the banking app nonsense (Tide etc), or any attempts to try and do a rubbish job at accounting in the app (leave this to your accounting app/platform - i.e Xero/QuickBooks/Sage etc).
  • Payee management - i.e multiple accounts per payee (USD/GBP)
  • Multiple currency payments/international payments
  • Xero bank feeds API connection, or at worst case Yodlee support

General thoughts

In my opinion, I would say a separate “Monzo Business” app would be preferable, and please, a different colour debit card - look at Starling for a reference on this.

I think all of that would be a good starting point, and basically would make my businesses eligible for #fullmonzo.

For this I’d pay a flat rate of £10-20 per account, per month with 2 debit cards/users for each account, but no transaction costs for card payments, faster payments or direct debits - a flat rate really makes sense for this product.

Then interest/arrangement fees for debt (overdrafts/small loans etc) on top.
Also cheque deposits I’d pay a £1 per cheque and cash deposits I’d happily pay 0.25-0.5%.


We’re planning to launch a business current account
(James) #39
  • What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company?
    Limited

**What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.)
Expenses and Identifying money being paid in
We are an online retailer and one of the directors has to identify money coming in that has been paid by bacs and can easily get missed, yes we could open a separate account but don’t want that
Expenses, would be great to have each dept to have an account to identify spends but under the umbrella of the main account- yes this could be done via credit cards but again we just want it all under one account for ease and to for data to come out of it for us to learn

  • What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances?
    Xero & reciept bank

  • What do you like / dislike about your current business bank account?
    App and security that barclays offer - dont like that the basic data it offers

  • 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?
    Found this thread as I was looking for an alternative to high street bank which could mainly solve our lost invoices and who spent what on what … very simple and shocked there isnt much out there apart from prepaid credit cards for business which kind of solve it ( soldo)


#40

Having a Monzo business account would be great.

  1. What do you do? Are you a sole proprietor, contractor, limited company? Limited company, providing Human Resources consultancy.

  2. What are the big pain points in managing your business finances? (think about things like invoices, expenses, payroll, taxes, etc.) I do this all through FreeAgent which is excellent.

  3. What tools do you currently use to manage your business finances? It would be nice to automate the setup reminders in my Google Calendar for the payments for EE NICs, VAT, Corp Tax etc.

  4. What do you like/dislike about your current business bank account? It’s Barclays, so charges for moving money from one account - my equivalent of pots - to another, the security to get into my account, it’s secure but like Fort Knox to get into your own account online.

  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? Ease of use and some way of printing a monthly statement, suitable for ID/vetting purposes. As I’m vetted for the assignments I do, I need to provide hard copy proof of the address of my business.(I know, old school ;))