Walker Agency is an Accounting firm based in Houston, Texas, that provides accounting and bookkeeping services to over 50 business clients.
Amy Walker, CPA, founded Walker Agency in 2015 with the philosophy of “doing accounting differently” by providing a high-touch, white-glove service, specifically for small and growing businesses, who need it the most.
Walker agency services a wide range of businesses, from solopreneurs to large boutiques, e-commerce companies, and tech startups. Amy sets out to actively help her clients to use their numbers to run their business and make better, well-informed business decisions in real-time.
Amy’s team consists of eight accounting professionals, an all-women crew who affectionately call themselves “team fantastic.” They embrace values such as involvement, trust, and kindness in their relationships with their clients and view it as a true partnership, formed to help their clients grow and succeed. “There’s a thrill in helping our clients see what their numbers can do for them other than filing a tax return”, Amy says, “there’s a thrill in partnering with them and growing with them.”
Walker Agency has been cloud-based and tech-centric from the very beginning of its founding, so they were already fairly prepared to handle Covid-19 and were able to be there for their clients when they needed them the most.
Amy Walker, CPA
Founder of Walker Agency
“Paying a bill shouldn’t be hard! Melio makes it easy to process payments. you hook up your bank account, you put some approval levels in place, and you just start using it.”
Walker Agency was looking for a simple to use, inexpensive online bill pay solution that fills the Accounts Payable “hole” in their tech stack. They found the perfect solution in Melio: “We liked it from the very beginning. It takes very little time to set up. You hook-up your bank account, put some approval levels in place, and you just start using it. On top of that, it’s free, so it saves our clients money and makes them very happy. ”
Since Walker Agency started using Melio, they’ve seen an immediate improvement in their daily workflow, increased efficiency, and saved hours a month on every client. Amy estimates that it takes just around ten minutes from the moment they set up an account for a client until they can start using it.
Amy also found that their work’s accuracy improved: Before Melio, the need to enter the payment information in the bank bill pay service manually was more prone to human error. Melio’s sync with the Quickbooks Online accounting software automates the process, increases its accuracy and cuts down the chance of human error to zero.
Naomi Mock, CPA, a member of Amy’s team, also sees Melio as a game-changer in efficiency and time-saving. “I don’t have to go to an outside source to pay a bill,” she says, “everything is right there at my fingertips. I enter a bill, schedule it for two weeks out in the future and forget about it, and know that the vendors will be paid on time”. The ten minutes she saves when paying each bill adds up over the course of a week and a month, to a significant time-saving. Naomi found that they can reduce the payment from five steps, down to three steps - a 40% decrease in payment handling time.
Sarah Duke, CPA, also a member of Walker Agency, adds that with previous bill pay software, there was a big learning curve for the agency’s clients. Melio’s simple interface has cut out the time they need to invest to train clients to use a bill pay software. Sarah estimates that they’re saving around 3-4 hours per client on the onboarding and training process.
Sarah also finds the Accountant Dashboard to be an effective tool to increase usability and save time: with the dashboard, they switch from one client account to another with a single click, without having to log in separately to each account.
As for the next steps, Based on the success they’ve had with Melio in Accounts Payable, Amy and her team are now actively looking to move clients to Melio, even those already on a bigger, more expensive app, and are also looking into using Melio for their clients’ Accounts Receivable.
Walker Agency faced a consistent challenge with their clients’ Accounts Payable process. Many of their clients didn't have an A/P system in place - they start out as a small business with a credit or a debit card, but soon enough, they need to start working with their bank’s bill pay systems or with checks because their vendors require it.
However, working with the different bank bill pay solutions only works on a small scale, and most clients outgrew that scale quickly. Amy’s team was facing the challenge of hopping from one clunky bank bill pay platform to another, each different from the other, which proved to be an inefficient and time-consuming work process. “We have a robust tech stack,” Amy says, “but with Accounts Payable, we’ve always looked for a better solution. There’s always been a hole. ”