Established in 2016, Smart WFM is a rapidly growing global human capital management consultancy. It helps Australian and international companies with digital transformation projects. Smart WFM is headquartered in Sydney and has more than 50 team members spread across most Australian capital cities and globally.
CEO and Founder Jarrod McGrath wanted to retain full ownership of his business but needed further finance to grow as Smart WFM quickly outgrew its traditional business loan.
Jarrod knew he needed working capital to bridge the 90 to 120 day gap between hiring a new staff member and receiving a cash return on the new hire, so he sourced invoice financing to help smooth out his cash flow.
However, with his existing invoice finance provider, the interest rate was high at around 30%, meaning he would avoid drawing down on his facility unless he absolutely had to, affecting his ability to grow his business.
“I would do everything not to draw down, knowing just how much interest I needed to pay. But I had to take it at the time, because if I wanted to retain ownership of the business, I really didn’t have the choice.”
The arrangement also impacted Jarrod’s client relationships as they were required to pay a third party and the finance company chased outstanding debts.
Jarrod heard about CommBank’s new digital invoice financing solution Stream Working Capital through his business banker. As an early adopter of new solutions, he was keen to try it out. He realised that Stream Working Capital was invoice financing made quick, easy and affordable.1
Stream Working Capital is a fully digital cash flow solution that allows customers with a Stream Working Capital Transaction Account2 to unlock cash flow from unpaid invoices that are more than $15,000 in value. It is flexible, fast, and simple, putting businesses in control of how and when they use the facility.
“CommBank can offer this service to us now with a very modern user platform, in a very modern way, at a very competitive interest rate.”
“It’s all driven from a digital front end, so it’s everything that I could want. And it’s so easy to use. I made a drawdown the other night on my mobile phone and the funds were in my bank account the next morning. It is very, very simple.”
Jarrod can now bring on new staff members with confidence, allowing his business to grow.
“Access to the facility has been key to scaling quickly. I’m able to pay salaries from the day I onboard someone, which means I can keep growing and stay in control of my business. Being able to employ a capable staff member with confidence is gold to me, because it means business growth.”
"Smart WFM’s compound annual revenue growth rate over the last three years has been substantial. We’ve seen over 220 per cent growth in headcount over the past three years. Stream helps us maintain a substantial growth rate and keep building our team.”
Being a digital business, Jarrod also appreciates Stream’s fully digitised platform which integrates with Smart WFM’s eligible cloud-based accounting system. Equally important is that the funds go directly into Smart WFM’s CommBank Business Transaction Account2 and Jarrod chooses when to pay back the funds. That means there is no difference to the way he conducts the business day-to-day.
“With other invoice finance providers, all the funds went to a bank account they controlled. Now I am in complete control.”
Cash flow made easy
For Jarrod, Stream is how modern banking should work.
“Working capital is an amazing way to release funds without giving away ownership of the business,” says Jarrod.
“It’s CommBank’s digital leadership that has allowed us to accelerate our growth globally. It’s a wonderful outcome for us.”