At Jargon, we’re excited to announce a new series of blog posts diving into our startup journey. The “On the Inside” series will cover the trials and tribulations of building and scaling an early-stage startup. We hope our readers benefit from our hard-learned lessons or at least get a sense for our daily lives as J’s.
I often get asked how we run our internal operations at Jargon. After all, we’re a team of six, focused on building a technology product and yet, somehow, all of the logistics of running and growing a company need to seamlessly happen in the background. In larger companies, there are entire departments of experts focused on HR & Benefits, Recruiting, Finance, Operations, Customer Success, Compliance, IT, Legal, Marketing & PR, etc. At Jargon, we can only afford to dedicate a fraction of a person’s time to these responsibilities. Also, being an early-stage company, we’re cash-conservative and cannot outsource these operations to external teams.
So we asked other founders for advice, researched and experimented. Eventually we landed on the following tools to help us do the job efficiently. It would have been handy to have the list below when we were just getting started so we’ve compiled it for those who are just getting started now.
Check out our secret weapons below for running an efficient company. Fortunately, many of these tools integrate with each other, enabling streamlined end-to-end solutions:
- GMail - for external communication
- Slack - for collaborating internally and with others in the community
- Superhuman - for being able to stay on top of my email inbox (I’m obsessed with Superhuman)
- Zoom - After cycling through pretty much every video conferencing solution out there, we’ve landed on Zoom as the most reliable provider
- MailChimp - for email marketing/updates
- Hugo, deployed using AWS - for website management
- Social Media: Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook - the usual suspects
- Google Suite - is there any startup that doesn’t use Google Suite?
- Notion - for organizing customer conversations: notes, follow-ups, take-aways, product requests, etc.
- Dropbox - for sharing files with external parties
- DocuSign - for managing signatures of contracts, NDAs, etc.
- Trello - for managing personal and group work items
- Clubhouse - for managing engineering priorities
- Hubspot - for our CRM and managing inbound interest, such as website inquiries, social media mentions, etc.
- Google Analytics - for tracking how people find our website and what they find interesting
- Zoom - for recording product demos and tutorials
Finance & Operations:
- Excel - for managing financials and projections (because Finance people can’t live in a world without Excel)
- Gusto - for payroll, benefits, tax reporting, offer management, employee onboarding, etc.
- Quickbooks Online - for accounting
- Carta - for equity management
- Stripe - for billing
- Silicon Valley Bank - for banking
- LinkedIn Premium - for talent sourcing and outreach, for professional updates, and online networking
- Hired.com - for talent sourcing and outreach
- Indeed - for inbound talent interest
- Angel List - for inbound talent interest
For the core of our business - product development, we use a plethora of design and development tools, which will be the subject of future posts.
And voilà, we’ve got a whole company running on the above infrastructure. If you’re early on, I hope the above suggestions jumpstart your operations. If you’re a veteran entrepreneur, I’d love to hear what other tools have been helpful in running an efficient company.