I am afraid to say that my initial high impression of Tide is on the slide. As I continue to come across gaps in its feature count, I am increasingly convinced that the service is (yet) fit for business banking purposes. From the inability to set up standing orders, to the fact that the account can’t accept international payments, to the inability for the account be joint and/or have an additional card holder, the list grows. These are key features and, to be honest, ones that I’d rather pay for than not have. Somewhat surprisingly, I am actually regretting my move from RBS to Tide.
A timetable, even if approximate, for new features would be good - reassure us that they’re coming.
Hi - thought I’d chime in here as these are points which resonate a lot with me (I’m Tide’s founder).
In short: you make good points, of course. In particular, international payments are our top feature priority and I regret that we haven’t got them out of the door already. I’m happy to disclose why we haven’t. Essentially, it would have been easy for us to deliver outbound international payments (there are lots of partners with whom we could do that). However, inbound international payments require IBANS and that is far more complex to deliver (there definitely aren’t lots of partners with whom we could work, and we’ve had to build a lot of the core functionality from scratch). We could have launched an uninspiring version of the feature which converted all payments into GBP automatically (perhaps at an expensive rate changed by a broker), but that wouldn’t be useful for companies who maintain balances in different currencies.
Hence, instead, we’ve taken on the much bigger task of building a proprietary forex capability which will give you a unique IBAN and the ability to hold pots of money in lots of different currencies. We believe this will be the most sophisticated international payments capability for SMEs in the World.
This wasn’t the plan when we initially launched Tide: it’s an improvement on the original plan and does mean that the date of IBAN launch has been pushed out a bit. This is why we don’t publish a timetable: we know that our members are businesses who need certainty and we don’t want to commit to dates on which we might later backtrack. However: this feature will be worth the wait. Most of it is already built, but it is still a handful of months away I’m afraid.
Standing orders are a much more straightforward feature. They’re on the roadmap, but actually you’d be surprised by how few members have requested them. I’m sorry we don’t have them yet but it won’t be long.
In our first few months after launch we had to focus on a lot of “background” functionality which was invisible to our members but essential to ensure a high quality of service at scale. Now, more of the visible features are beginning to trickle through (e.g. the recent launch of TouchID on iOS, with Android just around the corner). You’ll see more and more of this in the next few weeks and months: our pace of feature releases is increasing as we beef up our development team substantially.
So, thank you for taking the time to discuss this with us on here. I’m extremely appreciative. Thank you also for your patience. We’re nearly there!
Receiving Payments - International or otherwise
New feature alert: use Xero with Tide
Technology is a moving target and software is never complete. When Tide started, it was one of the first neo/challenger banks to target only the SMEs - a market sector that was totally being ignored by the so-called Big Fours. And Tide did capture some part of the market.
Tide started out as a basic app with a minimalistic set of features mainly because their idea was quite simple. Most things in life start small and basic but that doesn’t mean, they cannot grow. Some people don’t realize but Tide has continued to improve over the months (e.g. in account recovery, account limits reporting, web UI enhancements, etc).
With that being said, considering Tide’s price-point and targetted audience, there’s hardly any other competitor that does it better.
Obviously, products are never perfect or complete; as there would always be something missing or some feature lacking that someone really wants. But given the track record, I have total confidence that Tide will continue to evolve. So I concur with @george.bevis’s view on this!
Thank you for the extensive reply, George. I propose you check out what Revolut is doing regarding IBANs and multi-currency. They will be a good soure of inspiration
Thanks for your reply, George. I take your points, though can’t unreservedly agree with all of them. To my mind, the ability to accept an international payment is key for a service marketing itself to SMEs. And even though standing orders fall into your ‘less requested’ box, I still feel that many current account users would expect this feature as standard.
Additional frustrations - including, for example, EasyJet treating the Tide card as a credit card for the purposes of fees, and train ticket machines not recognising the card for reservation collection purposes - also strike me as ‘non-SME friendly’. I’d put these features ahead of, say, TouchID on my ‘wish list’. But, hey, we’re not all the same.
I guess that my frustrations also stem, in part, from the fact that Tide’s current account is close to doing exactly what I want. And I’m all for giving the big banks a kick up the annual results, so would like to see Tide in full flow. So, I’ll continue to be (mainly) patient and see what washes up on the shore in coming months.
In the meantime, if you could get the invoice systems to automatically populate with the next numerical invoice number, that’d be lovely. Could we have that by tea-time, please?
Thank you, George, for the update. I also think standing orders are a basic feature and will appreciate when it’s done. I look forward to using it as it will save a lot of time.
And I love the personal touch and the responsiveness. The way to go.
I’ve found this discussion useful as I’m still looking into setting up an account. Specifically just now I was looking to find how you set up two account holders (me and my business partner) - sounds like that is not possible yet?
My understanding is that you are correct - Tide does not yet offer a ‘joint account’. (I wish it did!)Some workarounds have been suggested and there is an old thread here: https://www.tide.co/community/t/can-i-add-team-members-to-my-account/328/1
Thank you. Really helpful.
As others have said even a rough timescale would be helpful for decision making - 2-3 months? 6 months?
From my perspective, I would prefer you to incrementally improve the offerings, not try to boil the ocean - it would have been far more useful and expedient to most of us to offer CHAPS/IBAN capability, even restricted, as that has been requested frequently for many months. You could then extend the features to include multi-currency pots, which would only make it better. Right now, I can’t use Tide because it doesn’t accept incoming IBAN payments. That’s daft. And telling me it will be “months” tells me to use another service.
I also agree that Standing Orders, and a roadmap are verging on essential features. I am fully aware that Tide is effectively a software product, and will never be ‘complete’, but it would be great to see what features are actually being considered, or worked on.
As for Standing Orders, that’s a must. So much so that to be honest I didn’t check when I signed up. Am currently having to retain my old account until this is sorted.
But great to see the founder of a disruptive product getting stuck in on the community forums.
I have also learned today that Tide does not accept paper Direct Debit mandates, despite providing an address for this purpose. It took about a month for this to actually be mentioned to us after we originally contacted support about a £10k payment bouncing.
We don’t have a single supplier who is able to process digital DD mandates at present.
In its current state, no serious company should consider using Tide under any circumstance. It is not fit for purpose.
I’m a one person Limited Liability Company and the current feature set ticks all the boxes. Instant account setup and approval is awesome (it took me four weeks with Metrobank). I created two additional accounts instantly from the app, one for VAT, one for Corporation Tax, thats amazing. I only do a few transfers in, a few expenses and a few payments out each month. It might be light on big bank features but it ticks all my boxes.
Except for the always “coming soon” Xero feature that is, but theres always got to be one thing.
Good to know that Tide is working well for you! I’m personally looking forward to IBAN support.
It’s interesting that you’ve opted to create additional separate accounts for VAT and Corporation Tax.
At first glance, it seems like this would cause additional unnecessary accounting paperwork due to having to move funds amongst the various accounts, but I might be mistaken. Am I?
Also, I’m assuming that such a multi-account setup offers at least some specific benefits. Any insight as to what those would be? I might consider the same setup if the benefits outweigh the disadvantages (if any).
I have an accountant and use Xero which deals with any of the transfer transactions. They are just transfer transactions after all and in the accounts they are ignored. The difference is only virtual anyhow.
The benefit for me is that I take a tiny salary and then lots of dividends throughout the year. I make sure I always transfer 20% of any dividend to my corporate tax account (tax on profits) and as each invoice comes in I transfer the VAT component to the VAT account.
It’s rudimentary, but it ensures I stay on top of cash flow and always know how much money I have as Her Royal Majesty’s money sits in separate accounts.
Anyone with more accounting knowledge should feel free to butt in here and point out any shortcomings with my approach.
International payments aren’t a big part of my incoming transactions but when required I ask my client to send me their payment via Transferwise. It was easy to link my Tide account to Transferwise, a little bit like linking it to Paypal. My clients have never had a problem sending their funds to me that way, many of them actually said they liked having the option of paying in their own currency and I have found that to be a really effective way around the nonexistent IBAN problem. Saying that it would be nice in future if we could accept and send international payments directly from our Tide account.
Agreed it’s great to see such transparency on feature delivery. I also was surprised to find no standing order support. I’m happy to do a few months of manual payments but will be relieved when SO is available!
Thanks for weighing in on this. I agree with your surprise if few members have requested standing orders, I’d have thought many small businesses will want to run payroll that way, pay their accountants, etc.
On the IBAN launch, I’d be happy with an intermediate solution, even one that accepted GBP only, or had higher than ideal forex fees. That way we can at least request that overseas clients pay in GBP until your final world-beating capability is ready to launch.
In general, I also feel that you should publishing timelines - perhaps along with degrees of uncertainty. That would be much better than having many of us requesting many updates from many of your support staff, with many resulting discussions over how we really would like to know when x will arrive. If you want loyal customers it’s better for us to know if we should hang on or find our own workarounds.
Hi @EmmaKidd, glad you’ve found this discussion useful! It looks like @MRMM has answered your question. But to add to this point, you would have to set up an account for one account holder now. You will then be able to add your partner(s), other director(s), accountant, etc., to the account and order multiple cards when these features have been released.