SureSwift is the proud owner and operator of many exceptional SaaS businesses, including Mailparser and Docparser, a pair of products we acquired from Founder Moritz Dausinger that you’ll often hear us refer to as “The Parsers”. Both products extract essential information from different file formats and automatically convert it to a format optimized for the user’s preferred end platform. It’s an amazing tool with use cases across diverse industries, receiving five-star reviews from customers in finance, IT, retail, and more.
While the Parsers were great products when we acquired them (Mailparser in 2016, and then Docparser in 2018) we’ve had the opportunity to grow the products since and we see more great things ahead. Join us for an interview with Jason Good, CEO of Mailparser and Docparser, to learn more about how we’ve grown the products and what we have planned for them next.
Hey Jason, thanks for taking the time to chat with me. Can you tell me a bit about yourself and your background?
I was hired in 2020 just to run the Parsers. Before that, I worked for a B2B SaaS startup that I joined very early. Most of my background prior to that startup was in sales — managing, hiring, and building sales teams. So, at that startup, I used that experience to build a sales team of 25 people. From there, I moved to the product team, which I ran for three and a half years. That company was then acquired by a private equity firm, and upon being acquired they decided to cut some people, me included. Then I saw a posting for SureSwift Capital, and here I am!
We always try to keep the original team when we acquire a new business, but in this case, we’re glad you ended up with us instead. So, back when you came on board to run Docparser and Mailparser, what was the product like?
The core functionality of the product is fairly similar to what it was. Both products are redesigned, more functional, and have more integration capabilities, but at the end of the day the core use of the product is the same as it was two years ago. The original team built a great tool, and we just had to do the work to make it more accessible and useful to more people. The biggest change has been on the people side. When I joined in 2020, the Docparser and Mailparser team was almost criminally lean at seven people. Since then, we’ve grown the team to 20 people, thanks to SureSwift’s investment. The expansion of the team has allowed both of the Parsers to be in a much better position for rapid growth.
We’re not trying to reinvent the wheel here. Instead, we implemented a really good process that caused some short term pain but has resulted in some serious long-term benefits.
What are the biggest changes we’ve made with the product, or new strategies we’ve employed? Which worked, and which didn’t?
One thing that I think we’ve learned on a broader level for SureSwift Capital as a whole is that tech debt needs to be addressed ASAP. If you think about it, when you buy businesses from very small teams, there’s a lot of incentive for that team to take programming shortcuts in the name of growth, and the way that the product is built under a lean team is generally not the way we like to build products at SureSwift. We were definitely hurt at Docparser and Mailparser by our initial sluggishness to address the tech debt.
Since then though, we’ve been able to make huge strides in addressing that tech debt. One part of that that’s worked really well is implementing a really good product development process. We hired an excellent technical delivery manager, Manasa Shetty, and that has been a game-changer for us. We’re not trying to reinvent the wheel here. Instead, we implemented a really good process that caused some short term pain but has resulted in some serious long-term benefits. I also think our team’s engineers have benefitted from this more formal approach, because most engineers at startups are kind of trained to just do whatever they think needs to be done quickly. While that definitely has a time and a place, having a proper development process laid out can be really helpful for a later stage product, and it’s been great for our engineers in terms of career development.
In the past, one of our challenges was just access to capital. That has definitely changed recently, which has allowed so much more specialization and efficiency.
What would you say is the biggest value-add that Sureswift Capital has had on the product? Why do you think it worked so well?
I would say the most helpful thing about Sureswift Capital is its vast number of SaaS business managers. All of the acquisitions Sureswift has made have resulted in us having a large range of experienced and diverse business operators who can share that experience with others. Even now, I can just ask questions to the company and get excellent in-depth answers. Just the other week, I was on a call with another business operator who used a tool called Segment, a tool that we’re looking to use, so getting that insight on how it helped and integrated was super helpful. Even our engineers can go to our huge pool of engineers at Sureswift to help them out with issues.
What are you most excited about for the product in the future?
There’s a number of things. We’ve taken on some long-term projects here, like redesigning which has taken a long time. I’m looking forward to seeing our conversion rates change on the basis of making the customer experience easier and simpler. I’m also curious as to how we can incorporate AI and Machine Learning into the product. We want to see how to make the product smarter, faster, and get better at recognizing which data is valuable to customers within a document.
Also, we’re looking to create a library of pre-built templates for customers that will have a corresponding landing page associated with each template that will be optimized for organic search results. The hope is to increase overall traffic to the site from people looking to parse very specific documents and emails. For example, Wells Fargo bank statements, Amazon Invoices, and Zillow lead emails are all common items we parse for customers. Pre-built templates will allow a new user to extract the data without having to learn how to create parsing rules themselves. We’re starting small, but in a few years we could have tens-of-thousands of templates optimized for SEO that allow very quick and simple conversion.
Awesome! Thank you for your time Jason!