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Innovating in the Space Between

January 26, 2012

I have always been drawn to challenges that sit between traditional MarkOrttung_06 copy disciplines. In college, this landed me in a major with a weird name and classes that spanned math, computer science, operations research, and statistics. In this major (Mathematical and Computational Sciences), I traveled with a small group of cohorts through the very different worlds that these four areas brought to life. I’m not sure I fit in with any of the worlds completely (Why don’t real math majors need to write anything down to solve the problems? What was my probability professor talking about?), but I learned that there is something really special about solving problems with the perspective of multiple disciplines. Looking back on it, I now realize that it was a great foundation for innovation.

Stanford’s president, John Hennessey, describes the potential for innovation in this space between: “When multiple disciplines come together and different perspectives are shared, there's no limit to the collaboration, creativity, and innovation that can occur.”

I was drawn to because it presents a great challenge that sits between multiple worlds. For us to build our vision of a cash flow command and control center, we need to work with traditional disciplines such as accounting, banking, and workflow as well a key area with no discipline: that big stack of financial paperwork that taunts every business owner, entrepreneur, or finance leader.

You may have seen our recent announcement that we are now partnering with banks, while continuing to work directly with businesses and accountants. I’m excited by our ability to bring the businesses’ and accountants’ perspective to the banks. I’m equally excited by the possibilities for improving our overall bill payment solution by working more closely with banks. Last year, we partnered with Intuit to launch Intuit Anywhere and we were able to deliver a great new sync capability with QuickBooks Online. This year, I’m confident that we’ll be able to add more innovative solutions to as we spend time directly in the banking world. wouldn’t exist if we didn’t spend time in between banking, accounting, workflow, and traditional paper-oriented processes. Please join me in this space between. I always welcome your feedback, challenges, suggestions, and ideas on how we can make a better solution for your business.

Thank you for reading,

Mark Orttung

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