Warren Buffett says "Never invest in a business you cannot understand.” Why I invested in Ordway.

Guest Author, Simon Lorenz, PhD
by Guest Author, Simon Lorenz, PhD
Jan 24, 2019 9:48:00 AM

One of the hardest things to do when building a business is choose where best to spend your time. At Klara, we are focusing our time on revolutionizing communication for everyone involved in the patient’s journey. We do that because we live in a time where we have access to anyone and anything with a click of a button. Yet when it is about getting access to my doctor and their team or my medical data, it feels like I have to travel back in time and spend hours to get a simple answer. Klara is changing that reality, and that change requires our utmost focus.

We sign up new practices on our communications platform daily, and early on we knew our invoicing and billing process was simply not going to scale. The management team looked around and asked the question — "Do we have the expertise to build a billing and revenue technology that would keep pace with our expected growth?" We honestly told ourselves, let’s focus on building our core business and find an automated billing system that would integrate with our platform and processes.

We evaluated the landscape and quickly chose the Ordway billing and revenue automation platform because it met a few key considerations for our business and our team:

  • Compatibility with our planned tech stack and processes. The native Salesforce integration allowed us to close deals in Salesforce and automatically generate contracts, plans, and invoices in Ordway based on the terms our sales team negotiated with our customers.

  • Value for dollar. Ordway wasn’t the lowest-cost provider, but their license and setup fees represented a significant savings as compared to other providers in the market.

  • Comfort with their management team. We wanted to make a choice and move on to issues critical to our core business. Their veteran team is a group that’s been at the epicenter of billing and ERP systems’ evolution for the last two decades and have collectively seen hundreds of implementations across a wide variety of industries and use cases.

Ultimately, we activated Ordway and it’s been humming in the background ever since. It’s been great watching my dashboards in Salesforce show more and more sales, and watching cash flow via our bank account increase because Ordway is effectively invoicing and collecting payments from our customers across the country.

In fact, one of the surprises after we activated the Ordway platform, was that we quickly identified accounts we were improperly billed, or not billed at all. We were able to recover thousands and thousands of dollars from practices that were improperly billed. This enabled us to more accurately reflect our revenue growth and forecast which was incredibly valuable as we entered a fundraising effort.

Klara-OfficeKlara office courtesy of Klara

Over the summer, we raised our Series A, and as I look back on what led to that moment, choosing to focus on our core business and platform and not get distracted by building everything in house, was critical. The SaaS economy is premised on letting organizations provide services for which they have the expertise, at economies of scale, so they can provide it for less than what it would take for you to build in house. We chose Salesforce for our CRM and Ordway for billing and revenue because we knew they are able to provide a superior service at a fraction of what it would cost us to build and maintain ourselves.

I understand the SaaS economy and I understand the value that Ordway creates for us. Our team can focus on creating value for our customers and not sink time and effort in to back-office operations. I understand this so deeply, that asked Ordway’s CEO to let me invest in their company. I’m tremendously happy that he agreed to let me be a part of the investor syndicate. Warren Buffett says, “Never invest in a business you cannot understand.” I’m confident Ordway will continue to unlock value for us internally by streamlining Klara operations. I’m also optimistic about the return for those choosing to invest in Ordway now and in the future.

Topics: SaaS, DCTech, culture, performance economy


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