Startups

KashFlow founder Duane Jackson has launched Staffology, a payroll SaaS and API

Comment

We already knew that serial entrepreneur Duane Jackson, who is best known for founding and exiting cloud accounting software KashFlow, was working on his third venture after recently selling Supdate to Crowdcube. And today Staffology, which Jackson tells me he began developing just over a year ago, is launching publicly.

Dubbed Staffology Payroll, the U.K. company’s first product is cloud payroll software built on top of a “comprehensive” and open API. The idea is that anything the web-based application does can also be achievable programmatically via the API.

“A few companies I advise were in need of a web-based payroll app with an API and it just didn’t exist,” explains Jackson. “Xero had been talking about an API for their U.K. payroll for years but it just didn’t look like it was happening [it is now, although it’s still in beta]. I had the opportunity to move on from Supdate which meant I would have some time on my hands, so I thought I’d give it a go myself.”

Jackson says that development of Staffology Payroll started in March 2018 and after a period of private and public beta testing it has passed the important milestone of gaining recognition for RTI and CIS filing from HMRC, the U.K.’s tax authority. The next stage is to encourage other software vendors and platforms to provide payroll functionality via the startup’s API.

“Automation of business processes is on the increase,” notes Jackson, but with regards to payroll this hasn’t yet happened for a lot of companies. “A real bottleneck is payroll because there simply aren’t the APIs out there to do it well,” he says. “It’s no longer just large employers trying to take advantage of technology and the efficiencies it can bring. Whether you’re a construction company managing payments to thousands of subcontractors or an accountancy firm managing payroll for hundreds of small businesses, integration and automation can save you a small fortune.”

To that end, the Staffology founder says the product has been used by a range of customers while in beta. Typical customers include accountants, payroll bureaus and employers of various sizes. “The white-label option is proving attractive to challenger banks looking at how our product can help them compete in the SME market and to HR SaaS vendors who hope it’ll make their own offerings more attractive,” says Jackson.

Another current customer is a large construction company that is integrating Staffology Payroll into their in-house systems to save them “days of work every month.”

Meanwhile, Staffology has been funded by Jackson’s own cash to date and he sees no reason to raise venture capital. “I made enough from my other exits to not have to worry about taking a salary from the business,” he says. “And as a full-stack developer I’m able to do the majority of the development work myself. So the costs have been minimal and what costs there have been I can comfortably cover. I’ve already had interest from a couple of VCs, but I struggle to see why I need to go down that route.”

With that said, Jackson is under no illusion that a payroll SaaS will only make significant profits with scale. Payroll processing is priced as a commodity and therefore Staffology will be a business that requires high volumes.

“Making money is the bit I still have to prove,” he adds. “The maximum you can get away with charging per payslip is £1, therefore the only way to make good money is to do very high volume. High volume payroll is exactly what APIs are best placed to handle and our product and pricing is designed to work for that market.”

More TechCrunch

Welcome back to TechCrunch’s Week in Review. This week had two major events from OpenAI and Google. OpenAI’s spring update event saw the reveal of its new model, GPT-4o, which…

OpenAI and Google lay out their competing AI visions

Expedia says Rathi Murthy and Sreenivas Rachamadugu, respectively its CTO and senior vice president of core services product & engineering, are no longer employed at the travel booking company. In…

Expedia says two execs dismissed after ‘violation of company policy’

When Jeffrey Wang posted to X asking if anyone wanted to go in on an order of fancy-but-affordable office nap pods, he didn’t expect the post to go viral.

With AI startups booming, nap pods and Silicon Valley hustle culture are back

OpenAI’s Superalignment team, responsible for developing ways to govern and steer “superintelligent” AI systems, was promised 20% of the company’s compute resources, according to a person from that team. But…

OpenAI created a team to control ‘superintelligent’ AI — then let it wither, source says

A new crop of early-stage startups — along with some recent VC investments — illustrates a niche emerging in the autonomous vehicle technology sector. Unlike the companies bringing robotaxis to…

VCs and the military are fueling self-driving startups that don’t need roads

When the founders of Sagetap, Sahil Khanna and Kevin Hughes, started working at early-stage enterprise software startups, they were surprised to find that the companies they worked at were trying…

Deal Dive: Sagetap looks to bring enterprise software sales into the 21st century

Keeping up with an industry as fast-moving as AI is a tall order. So until an AI can do it for you, here’s a handy roundup of recent stories in the world…

This Week in AI: OpenAI moves away from safety

After Apple loosened its App Store guidelines to permit game emulators, the retro game emulator Delta — an app 10 years in the making — hit the top of the…

Adobe comes after indie game emulator Delta for copying its logo

Meta is once again taking on its competitors by developing a feature that borrows concepts from others — in this case, BeReal and Snapchat. The company is developing a feature…

Meta’s latest experiment borrows from BeReal’s and Snapchat’s core ideas

Welcome to Startups Weekly! We’ve been drowning in AI news this week, with Google’s I/O setting the pace. And Elon Musk rages against the machine.

Startups Weekly: It’s the dawning of the age of AI — plus,  Musk is raging against the machine

IndieBio’s Bay Area incubator is about to debut its 15th cohort of biotech startups. We took special note of a few, which were making some major, bordering on ludicrous, claims…

IndieBio’s SF incubator lineup is making some wild biotech promises

YouTube TV has announced that its multiview feature for watching four streams at once is now available on Android phones and tablets. The Android launch comes two months after YouTube…

YouTube TV’s ‘multiview’ feature is now available on Android phones and tablets

Featured Article

Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

CSC ServiceWorks provides laundry machines to thousands of residential homes and universities, but the company ignored requests to fix a security bug.

1 day ago
Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

TechCrunch Disrupt 2024 is just around the corner, and the buzz is palpable. But what if we told you there’s a chance for you to not just attend, but also…

Harness the TechCrunch Effect: Host a Side Event at Disrupt 2024

Decks are all about telling a compelling story and Goodcarbon does a good job on that front. But there’s important information missing too.

Pitch Deck Teardown: Goodcarbon’s $5.5M seed deck

Slack is making it difficult for its customers if they want the company to stop using its data for model training.

Slack under attack over sneaky AI training policy

A Texas-based company that provides health insurance and benefit plans disclosed a data breach affecting almost 2.5 million people, some of whom had their Social Security number stolen. WebTPA said…

Healthcare company WebTPA discloses breach affecting 2.5 million people

Featured Article

Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Microsoft won’t be facing antitrust scrutiny in the U.K. over its recent investment into French AI startup Mistral AI.

2 days ago
Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Ember has partnered with HSBC in the U.K. so that the bank’s business customers can access Ember’s services from their online accounts.

Embedded finance is still trendy as accounting automation startup Ember partners with HSBC UK

Kudos uses AI to figure out consumer spending habits so it can then provide more personalized financial advice, like maximizing rewards and utilizing credit effectively.

Kudos lands $10M for an AI smart wallet that picks the best credit card for purchases

The EU’s warning comes after Microsoft failed to respond to a legally binding request for information that focused on its generative AI tools.

EU warns Microsoft it could be fined billions over missing GenAI risk info

The prospects for troubled banking-as-a-service startup Synapse have gone from bad to worse this week after a United States Trustee filed an emergency motion on Wednesday.  The trustee is asking…

A US Trustee wants troubled fintech Synapse to be liquidated via Chapter 7 bankruptcy, cites ‘gross mismanagement’

U.K.-based Seraphim Space is spinning up its 13th accelerator program, with nine participating companies working on a range of tech from propulsion to in-space manufacturing and space situational awareness. The…

Seraphim’s latest space accelerator welcomes nine companies

OpenAI has reached a deal with Reddit to use the social news site’s data for training AI models. In a blog post on OpenAI’s press relations site, the company said…

OpenAI inks deal to train AI on Reddit data

X users will now be able to discover posts from new Communities that are trending directly from an Explore tab within the section.

X pushes more users to Communities

For Mark Zuckerberg’s 40th birthday, his wife got him a photoshoot. Zuckerberg gives the camera a sly smile as he sits amid a carefully crafted re-creation of his childhood bedroom.…

Mark Zuckerberg’s makeover: Midlife crisis or carefully crafted rebrand?

Strava announced a slew of features, including AI to weed out leaderboard cheats, a new ‘family’ subscription plan, dark mode and more.

Strava taps AI to weed out leaderboard cheats, unveils ‘family’ plan, dark mode and more

We all fall down sometimes. Astronauts are no exception. You need to be in peak physical condition for space travel, but bulky space suits and lower gravity levels can be…

Astronauts fall over. Robotic limbs can help them back up.

Microsoft will launch its custom Cobalt 100 chips to customers as a public preview at its Build conference next week, TechCrunch has learned. In an analyst briefing ahead of Build,…

Microsoft’s custom Cobalt chips will come to Azure next week

What a wild week for transportation news! It was a smorgasbord of news that seemed to touch every sector and theme in transportation.

Tesla keeps cutting jobs and the feds probe Waymo