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Jessica Haskell

VP & Corporate Controller, Applause

“I can’t imagine managing the Israeli office without Nextage.”

  • Jessica Haskell

    About Applause

    Founded: 2007
    Opened an office in Israel: 2014
    About: Applause, a Vista Equity Partners portfolio company, is the market leader in digital application quality testing. Through its crowd testing services, Applause delivers a full suite of testing and feedback solutions to enterprise customers. With the world’s largest community of digital experts, Applause is uniquely positioned to test software applications, connected devices, omnichannel experiences, payments, accessibility and voice applications anywhere in the world, on any device, at any time, with real people. Established in the US in 2007, Applause is a global company with headquarters in Framingham, Massachusetts and 400 employees worldwide.

     

  • Jessica Haskell

    What made you open a location in Israel?

    We decided to open an office in Israel in 2014 with 3 employees. We wanted to open an R&D center there because we recognized that Israel was becoming a major innovation hub for many multinational digital companies, with its vibrant tech sector. We felt it was important to have a local presence there, to build our footprint in the region and be part of the entire hi-tech ecosystem there. In 2017, Applause transformed the office from an R&D Center to a full sales and delivery operation with 28 employees, focusing on markets in Israel, Europe and Asia. This allowed us to be closer to clients, build our network, and develop new partnerships.

  • Jessica Haskell

    What were some of the challenges in opening the Israel site?

    We knew it would be difficult to manage the financial operations of the new office from our headquarters near Boston. There were several major challenges that stood out from the start: the time difference would be a clear barrier in getting things done in real time, the language barrier would make it extremely difficult, if not nearly impossible, for us to deal with the local government offices, local vendors, and customers. And we weren’t familiar with the local financial rules and requirements. It was pretty clear to us that we’d need help on the ground.

  • Jessica Haskell

    What type of help were you looking for?

    We needed help on a few levels. On a day-to-day level, we needed bookkeepers who would ensure compliance with local Israeli GAAP, as well as someone to process our local payroll and tax requirements. Equally important was the need for someone on the ground there to make sure we were in total compliance with all the local regulatory business filings, and could handle the VAT and banking, as well as the necessary business registrations. Based on high recommendations from PWC, we decided to select Nextage as our local financial services provider.

  • Jessica Haskell

    How has Nextage helped you

    We’ve been working with Nextage since we opened our office in Israel, and they’ve provided us with a range of strategic and daily financial services since then. They represent us professionally at all the local financial institutions – our Israeli bank, the VAT Authority, and government offices. That saves us a tremendous amount of time and also money, since we don’t have to travel back and forth all the time from Boston. They’re also able to navigate the local system better than we could. Most importantly, we feel that Nextage always has our best interests at the forefront of our partnership.

  • Jessica Haskell

    What does the partnership look like?

    It is a true partnership. Over the past five years, we’ve received superior service from Assaf Sarid, Director of Finance, and Yoni Nisman, Controller. The Nextage team is a pleasure to work with on a day-to-day basis – they’re knowledgably, responsive, and always on top of any given situation. We 100% view them as an extension of our team at HQ. Not only that, but they’re very proactive, and bring up an issue or concern that might arise, so I don’t feel I have to worry about any unexpected situations or being caught in a reactive position.

  • Jessica Haskell

    What are some of the other benefits you’ve realized?

    Nextage also manages our collection process for our Israeli customers in real time, which helps to reduce DSO and increase cashflow. They were also flexible in accommodating our request to implement NetSuite, which helped automate our global processes and decrease the consolidated days to close and issue financial statements quickly, which was a huge help to the finance department at HQ. With Nextage taking care of all the local accounting, it allows my team and me to focus on larger more strategic items, such as automation of manual tasks and driving revenue and company growth worldwide. I never have to worry about the day-to-day operations in Israel – I have the utmost confidence in our team at Nextage.