Sandboxx replaced Amex, Expensify, and Bill.com with Ramp
Sandboxx is a team of military veterans, spouses, and civilians on a mission to provide service members with the support they need during their military journeys, including helping recruits prep for basic training and stay connected with friends and family. Sandboxx’s Letter feature allows loved ones to send letters quickly, easily, and securely to recruits at basic training; track the delivery status of those letters; and include pre-paid return stationery to simplify and expedite two-way communication.
Launched in 2015, Sandboxx is growing quickly, with over five million users and currently onboards 70% of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) during the recruiting and basic training phases. The company is helping the DoD better recruit and retain its newest members.
To manage its expenses, the Sandboxx team relied on three disparate systems: Expensify, Bill.com, and American Express. Founder and CEO Sam Meek found that extracting the most value from each system required hours he simply didn’t have—especially without an in-house finance team.
"You have to take the time to really run Expensify. Without having a dedicated finance function, it was nearly impossible to do."
- Sam Meek, founder and CEO
Likewise, Sam found that Bill.com required a hands-on time investment to maximize its efficacy, and managing spend in and out of policy across multiple Amex cards was becoming more cumbersome as the company grew. “As the company’s been growing, the spend has been getting bigger, and so I’m getting more and more concerned that we’re not watching certain parts of spend,” he says.
Sandboxx needed a solution that could streamline these time-consuming systems into a single unified platform and help them better measure their spend. They also needed an innovative and seamless way to provide a variety of company benefits.
Sandboxx needed a change, and Sam began a search for the solution he was looking for. The company looked into Divvy, Brex, and Airbase, but none of those solutions were either flexible or cost-effective enough for Sandboxx’s needs.
“I just started Googling around and Ramp popped up,” explains Sam. “I started looking at it and thought, ‘This is what we need.’ I had the initial call. It was a no-brainer; where do we sign?”
Sam appreciated that committing to Ramp didn’t come with any upfront costs and that the platform’s interface was incredibly user-friendly. “It’s just so simple and easy,” Sam says, citing his newfound ability to stand up cards for individual vendors, manage spending hierarchies and thresholds, and gain visibility into spend across the organization. With Brex refusing to underwrite Sandboxx, Airbase being too expensive to implement, and Divvy trying to force his team to move all of their Amex cards over, a move that Sam was not ready to make at that time, he chose Ramp.
Sandboxx immediately realized hours of time savings after replacing Amex, Expensify, and Bill.com with Ramp.
“I was spending four hours a month on Expensify, two hours a month on Amex, and probably five hours a month on Bill.com,” explains Sam. “And now, I’m just spending a little bit of time in Ramp. The UI is so intelligent, and I know exactly where I want to go to look at something. If I have a question or pull a report, it’s so easy. I’m in and out in five minutes.”
Ramp’s ability to empower employees with spending limits and hierarchies has saved valuable time for other team members as well. “If my Director of Growth wants to try out this platform that he’s reading about, he’s authorized at a certain dollar value to go into Ramp, line up a virtual credit card, and hire some software to try an experiment out,” says Sam. “In the past, he’d have to go to someone on the team with an Amex and say, ‘hey, can I spend money on this?’” As Sam notes, such frequent approval-seeking wastes time and delays the achievement of otherwise simple tasks.
Beyond generating such efficiencies, Ramp has enabled Sandboxx to easily offer competitive benefits in a challenging recruitment and retention market.
“We are very big on investing in our people giving them the resources to upskill themselves...We didn’t really have an easy way to scale this critical function until Ramp came along.”
- Sam Meek, founder and CEO
With Ramp, Sandboxx has created individual education, wellness, and growth hack stipends. Each employee receives a pre-loaded Ramp card that they can use to upskill themselves, stay healthy, and try new initiatives that could provide value to Sandboxx.
“Every year, we’ve had this people investment budget,” says Sam. “But every year at the end of the year, only 30% of people use it, because it was not very easy or clear to access.” With a simple process, Ramp has helped employees easily take advantage of these benefits.
As far as Sam is concerned, the sky's the limit when it comes to the potential benefits Sandboxx can realize by partnering with Ramp. “The amount of time that Ramp saves the stakeholders of the company is pretty remarkable,” he says.
In the coming months, Sam and his team are looking forward to unlocking even more time and savings with Ramp.