It was 2014 when FreshBooks CEO, Mike McDerment, realized he needed to build an entirely new product.
In order to stay relevant, competitive and allow the company to better serve its small business customers, FreshBooks needed to completely overhaul its existing 10-year old software. And lofty goals were set. The new FreshBooks platform had to be 10 times easier to use, encourage collaboration with clients and be agile enough to roll out improvements faster than ever.
However, along with the benefits and excitement of building a new product also came serious risk. How do you retain your customers’ trust if things go wrong? After all, when customers leave a software provider, they usually don’t look back. The approach was an unusual and unexpected one: FreshBooks created a secret company, called Billspring, to compete against itself.
Bo Burlingham of Forbes sat down with Mike to uncover the whole story.