Dan Bergerac knows the value of time. He’s invested a lot of it in the past 20 years to build Jobetty, LLC, a now-thriving two-part business: one part dog salon, one part cafe. So why at the age of 51, he wondered, was he spending hours every month stuffing and licking envelopes?
“It’s sort of degrading that, even though I’ve achieved a certain level of success, I was still running checks and putting them in envelopes,” he says. “There’s just something about licking envelopes that really depresses me.”
There are so many things he’d rather be doing. Yet the bills have to be paid—to the vendors who supply his two Mudpuppy’s dog salons in the San Francisco Bay Area and to the vendors who supply his Sit & Stay Cafe next door to Mudpuppy’s. Then there are the contract workers at the summer snack bars he operates at two popular Bay Area swim spots.
All told, Bergerac was manually processing more than 60 invoices a month and it was taking six to eight hours each time. “I was printing out checks, signing them, stuffing them in envelopes, placing the stamps and trudging off to post office,” he says. “Add in the paper jams and dealing with printer issues and I was practically losing my mind.”
And despite all his painstaking attention to detail, there were still occasions when bills didn’t get paid. He recalls one time when a payment to the health department was hung up.
“I ran 30 checks through the printer that morning but some of the checks got stuck together and I never signed one,” he says. “You never want to not pay the health department because those guys can shut you down. After that, I always wondered, did I sign everything? Did I miss anything? I never knew for sure.”
Bergerac admits he’s not the most tech-savvy man in the world but he knew he had to shift to a more sophisticated system. He heard about Bill.com and its cloud-based technology and decided to make the move.
Now when he gets an invoice he simply scans it into his Bill.com account. With one keystroke he can pay the bill and be sure that it’s done. The payment information syncs automatically with his QuickBooks accounting system, so he no longer has to manually enter data. What’s more, all his records are digitally stored in Bill.com, so he’s been able to eliminate much of his old paper-based filing system.
Finally, accounts payable is a smooth process at Jobetty, LLC. Vendors are paid promptly and bills don’t fall through the cracks. If a vendor calls, he can say exactly when the payment will be made, instead of, “My printer ate your check.”
“A lot of our vendors are smaller businesses themselves who really depend on those payments,” Bergerac says. “It’s nice to know that I can support and promote local small businesses by ensuring they get paid promptly.”
He also appreciates the support he gets from Bill.com. He says the assistance he received in implementing the system was top-notch. Since Bergerac is not particularly tech-savvy, the first few weeks he had questions almost daily. The first time he synced with QuickBooks he had a Bill.com support rep carefully walk him through the process.
“The support team was just phenomenal,” says Bergerac. “They know the product upside-down and backward. They could figure out exactly what I was trying to tell them and help me with all my questions, even though I don’t speak techy. Also there was never a wait, either with the online chat people or on the phone.”
The bottom line for Bergerac: Bill.com saves him a lot of time. Paying bills used to consume hours and hours each month. Now it takes 15 minutes, unleashing him to spend his days in more profitable and pleasurable endeavors.
“I don’t need a lot of material things, I don’t need that shiny new sports car every year,” he says. “What I really want is time to pursue my other interests outside of my business. Bill.com gives me the freedom to do that.”
Since installing Bill.com a year and half ago, Bergerac has the freedom to do the things he likes to do. He spends more time working out at the gym, more time scouring local farmers markets for fresh fruits and vegetables, and more time reading the books he loves.
“Bill.com has helped me get my life back,” he says, “and you really can’t put a price tag on that.”