KLP Resident: Streamtime
What they do: A studio management solution to help creative companies keep track of their time and money.
Company HQ: Sydney, Australia
About The Team
Kate McLeod: Business Development Manager, North America
Top three apps: Flipboard, Zendesk and Yammer
Coffee fix near the KLP office: Sightglass Coffee, 7th and Folsom
Favourite SF Nabe: The Castro, that’s where I call home.
Tech to watch in 2013: Wearable computing and 3D Printing
Tells us about Streamtime
It’s a studio management solution for creative companies, like advertising, interactive and graphic design agencies. It helps them keep track of their time and their money, so they can can focus on being creative.
So it’s like the new version of doing your timesheets?
That’s one part of it, but we go a lot further. Streamtime offers the full package, from tracking new business to quoting, then the actual job management, scheduling and time capacity planning, through to invoicing and reporting. The only thing it doesn’t do is the accounting piece. To close that loop we integrate with other systems like Xero and Quickbooks.
How long have Streamtime been located in San Francisco?
We’ve been here about a year and a half now. For us, getting a foothold in the US was about gaining an understanding of the market, and finding our niche. We were already an established company in NZ, Australia and the UK.
What factors contributed in Streamtime’s decision to join the Kiwi Landing Pad?
To be honest, it was a no brainer for us. It was perfect timing and it meant that we didn’t have to spend valuable time looking for an office. Also, it offered an instant network of like-minded people and companies in the same boat. Being the only Streamtime employee in the US could have been a lonely existence if I wasn’t surrounded by a community, so that was actually one of the main reasons that we decided to [join the Kiwi Landing Pad].
So you’re here in San Francisco, where is the rest of the Streamtime team based?
We have offices in seven cities around the world. We have a small team in Christchurch, where we were founded. Our largest office is in Sydney. That’s where our development, sales and customer support teams are based. We also have offices in London, Manchester, Ghent and Melbourne.
What does your role entail here in the US?
Predominantly sales, so I’m out there every day talking to potential clients, and demoing the product. I’m also passionate about working with existing US clients to ensure they have all the training and support they need to really maximise the benefits of using Streamtime.
How does Streamtime benefit from having a presence on the ground in the US?
It really helps us understand our potential clients. Before we had a presence here, we picked up a few clients organically through people finding us on Google. But now we’re here, we’re able to focus our attention on the market a lot more, for example by attending industry events and really getting a sense of the challenges faced by companies here.
Has Streamtime gained ground in the US market since forging a presence in San Francisco?
It’s been an intentional slow burn. It’s an interesting market to focus on [creative agencies], in that they know all of the marketing tricks. So we like to use word of mouth, social, and just being nice people to get our brand out there. Above all, our aim is to build a great culture and a great company with great people.
What was Streamtime’s biggest achievement in the States last year?
Our biggest achievements are in helping the small companies. Helping the guys that, without us, and the process that we take them through, wouldn’t be as profitable or as efficient as they are. The big companies often have firm processes, their own way of doing things, but the real satisfaction comes from helping the more boutique-y agencies. They’re usually started by highly creative people who are starting a business for the first time, and who don’t always have the business acumen to make the agency fly. So we come in and help them put processes in place to do that. That’s really what we’re all about.
What advice or insights have you gained from being here in SF that could be useful to tech companies and entrepreneurs in NZ?
When I was working in the UK, you could often call potential clients back a week or two after you first made contact. Whereas here things move a lot more quickly. Americans have high expectations of customer service, and demand it from everyone they work with. Be concise, on the ball, and make sure that you follow up quickly. Small talk doesn’t go down as well as it does in Australia and New Zealand. Just get to the point and don’t waste their time.
What has been the most surprising thing about San Francisco for you?
Probably the extremes. The extremes of wealth and poverty, the extremes of personalities and opinions. It’s a place where anything’s possible, and anything goes.