Author Jonathan Mifsud
Founder & CTO, Buddy Limited

Adults, everywhere over the world, at one point or another, are likely to have been paid a salary. Granted, there are a few exceptions, but have you ever stopped and wondered how businesses decide what to use for their payroll? It’s certainly not only a question of price and quality.

Back in 2017 when I first met my co-founder David; I had very little idea of what I was getting myself into. Sure back then; I had already hired two employees. And yes I had been doing an excel-based calculation to calculate their payroll. To be fair my accountants back then did say it was the ‘cheapest’ and most-feasible option for me.

So you’d have thought that I’d had a clue. In June 2018 we incorporated Buddy and launched our Beta version with a handful of customers; primarily I’d say we were the first users of the software.

As we worked to grow our product we learnt two key things:

  1. Not all Payroll is equal
  2. Regardless of how easy or good your software may be, you cannot buy trust.

We started learning very quickly that the law is different, no two industries are equal, both in treatment and in front of the law. To make things more interesting; the regulator does allow a certain degree of flexibility when it comes to certain rules that can be overwritten by a stroke of a pen, possibly even by an email.

In order to win larger businesses and the trust of smaller clients, we learnt that we needed to obtain a number of things at the same time.

  1. Security & Quality Standards – through Penetration Testing and ISO 27001
  2. Building enterprise-level tools to attract big names to work with us
  3. Going after the big-name enterprise client even if this strained our small-team resources

This led to our team building a flexible; user-customisable payroll engine that is able to convert raw timesheet data into payroll data. Whilst it may look simple; I guarantee that it is not when pretty much every client we encounter mentions a unique way they calculate their payroll.

Thanks to this innovation; we are now catering to the Island’s biggest fast-food chain, and leveraging their brand/trust, I can guarantee, has significantly improved our conversion rates.

Having been in business for 3+ years, and now associating some big names with our brand is definitely having a positive impact on our growth. Equally, it has allowed our product to mature and placed us as one of the leaders within the local industry.

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