Rillet is modern accounting software made specifically for SaaS companies. With Finch, they were able to integrate with 40 payroll systems in under a week.
Rillet is modern accounting software made specifically for SaaS companies. Founded in 2021 by Nicolas Kopp, Rillet is on a mission to automate the tedious work that falls on accountants, empowering them to quickly get meaningful insight into the state of their company’s finances.
Payroll is a vital source of truth for accounting. But for accounting platforms like Rillet, collecting this data is no simple task.
In the early days, the Rillet team relied on accountants to manually download files from their customers’ payroll systems and manually map, transform, and sanitize the data before uploading it to Rillet. If an accountant served multiple clients, the process had to be repeated. And if there was an error, they would be forced to manually revert the changes and run the process again. This tedious, repetitive, and error-prone process had to be completed each month.
As Ernesto Medina Delgado, a software engineer at Rillet, points out — this initial experience was not tightly aligned with Rillet’s value proposition.
“Our intention was to make the accountant’s life easier, not more complicated,” said Ernesto. “The initial solution was putting the burden on their shoulders, and we wanted to take that friction away.”
The team quickly agreed that in order to deliver on Rillet’s vision, they would need to build integrations with payroll systems. The problem was that doing so would require a lot of engineering resources, both upfront and on an ongoing basis.
“Building integrations requires a lot of effort from developers, not only to get them set up correctly but also to maintain the integration,” said Ernesto. “These are live systems that evolve over time. It’s not a set-it-and-forget-it type of situation.”
“Building integrations requires a lot of effort from developers, not only to get them set up correctly but also to maintain the integration. "
Making matters worse, the sheer number of payroll systems on the market—5,700 and counting —meant they’d have to build many integrations if they wanted to serve both current and future customers.
After some research, Nicolas asked Ernesto to evaluate Finch, the unified API for the employment ecosystem.
Ernesto soon discovered that, by building a single integration with Finch, Rillet could unlock the data they needed from over 40 payroll systems.
“Finch very quickly jumped to the front of the line,” said Ernesto. “Both the breadth of payroll systems they supported and the data standardization removed a huge burden from our developers’ shoulders. It was clear Finch would save us considerable time and money.”
Finch wasn’t the only provider the Rillet team considered, but it was the one with the best developer experience, according to Ernesto.
For one, the developer documentation was clear and easy to understand, even for non-technical team members.
“Code should read like a newspaper, with the most important information at the top and less important information at the bottom. Finch’s docs followed this best practice,” said Ernesto. “More importantly, the accounting team was able to validate that they would get the data they needed without the engineering team’s assistance.”
Ernesto also received a technical walkthrough from one of Finch’s sales engineers, who helped him understand the options at his disposal for how to build the integration with Finch.
“My experience with the Finch team not only left a positive impression, but also made me confident in my ability to integrate with Finch,” said Ernesto. “It made the decision to move forward with Finch easy.”
When it came time to implement, the process was straightforward. His team built a functional proof of concept within a matter of hours, which they later leveraged to build the final solution. They then spent about one-third of their week mapping the data before they were ready to push to production.
“After a single week, we were able to add all the payroll systems Finch supports to our list of integrations,” said Ernesto. “Compared to integrating with payroll systems one by one, it was really low-effort.”
“After a single week, we were able to add all the payroll systems Finch supports to our list of integrations. Compared to integrating with payroll systems one by one, it was really low-effort.”
Ernesto estimates that the process of integrating with Finch was 7X faster than it would have been to build a 1:1 integration with a single payroll system. More importantly, Rillet unlocked 40 payroll systems for the price of one.
“I can’t imagine having to do the massive amount of work it would have taken to integrate with each individual payroll system,” said Ernesto. “We saved so, so many developer hours.”
“I can’t imagine having to do the massive amount of work it would have taken to integrate with each individual payroll system. We saved so, so many developer hours.”
Rillet’s customers also reaped the benefits of their decision.
“The value our customers received during that timeframe was way higher than it would have been if we had to build the integrations ourselves,” said Ernesto. “Without the burden of building integrations, we were able to significantly improve our product during that period.”
In addition to automating key accounting processes by pulling in and standardizing the customer’s payroll data, the Rillet team has embedded built-in reporting around key SaaS metrics into the product. That makes it possible for customers to get meaningful insight into the state of their finances within minutes of signing up, saving them the time it would typically take to build all those reports from scratch. Moreover, these reports allow accountants to see where the data comes from and how the numbers are calculated—helping eliminate possible errors.
“Most accounting software was designed before the advent of the software-as-a-service industry,” said Ernesto. “We’re reimagining accounting software for the current era.”
Throughout Rillet’s journey with Finch, they’ve been nothing but satisfied.
“We’ve had very few issues throughout our journey with Finch, and the support team has been very responsive. They answer our questions and resolve any issues fast, while maintaining a high bar for quality,” said Ernesto. “We’re really happy to be working with Finch.”