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Gatekeeper gives us excellent control and visibility of spend, which we have never had before. We have been able to terminate contracts that no longer serve us with a total value of circa £1m. ” -

Krupa Patel, Head of Procurement UK & US (Global).

Name: Funding Circle
Location: London, United Kingdom 
Description: Funding Circle is the UK’s largest loan platform for SMEs.  Founded in 2010, its market-leading and unparalleled instant decision lending technology enables small businesses to apply for finance in an average of six minutes, with lending decisions in as little as nine seconds
Key Stakeholders for Gatekeeper: Head of Procurement


Before working with Gatekeeper, Funding Circle found themselves outsourcing more and more with third-party vendors which led to challenges around:

    1. Difficulty tracking supplier due diligence and compliance through Google Drive as the volume of third-parties continued to increase
    2. Poor visibility and control of contract commitments caused by a non-digitised contract database
    3. Missed renewal deadlines, leading to the auto-renewal of supplier contracts that were no longer required.  

Following a tender process where supplier management tools were assessed by core functional requirements, innovation potential and costs, Gatekeeper was selected to help Procurement at Funding Circle be the best and most organised function possible. 

Since working with Gatekeeper, Funding Circle are now able to proactively manage all contracts and make informed business decisions. The business now has excellent control and visibility of spend and has been able to make cost savings of around £1 million , specifically by terminating contracts that were no longer required. 

Why Gatekeeper?

  1. Centralised repository. Before using a supplier management tool, Funding Circle relied on Google Drive, making it difficult to manage high volumes of third-party contracts. Gatekeeper offers a centralised repository that stores contracts and supplier records in one place and satisfies Funding Circle’s internal governance structure.
  2. Workflows for supplier due diligence. Funding Circle previously found it difficult to identify and mitigate third party risks as suppliers failed to complete due diligence questionnaires. With Gatekeeper’s Kanban Workflow Engine, the business has been able to track and improve supplier responses.
  3. Intuitive user experience. The user-friendliness of Gatekeeper’s platform has increased the level of engagement from across the business and the satisfaction levels across the senior leadership team who can see all the contracts that they are responsible for in one place.

The Full Story

Funding Circle is the UK’s largest loan platform for SMEs. Founded in 2010, a wide range of investors are utilising this technology and distribution platform to lend c. £14 billion to approximately 120,000 businesses globally. This is providing small businesses with the fast and simple access finance they need to grow and power the economy. In 2021, lending through Funding Circle's UK platform is estimated to have contributed £7.2bn to GDP and supported 100,000 jobs.

The Procurement function at Funding Circle came to market for a supplier management system as their number of outsourced vendors continued to increase. Managing suppliers, tracking key dates and keeping up-to-date with due diligence became too challenging as the business relied solely on Google Drive.

Funding Circle is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK, which brings a host of compliance requirements relating to the management of third-parties and associated record-keeping.

The business had faced challenges with suppliers being slow to respond to due-diligence questionnaires and needed to find a way to run this process with more automation and less administrative overhead.

The Procurement Team also needed a way to keep up-to-date with the fast paced changes in the industry, as well as the ability to report on potential cyber security breaches and their impact to the business.

Following its IPO in September 2018, the business went out to tender and assessed the market based on core functional requirements including: 

  • An easy-to-use database of contracts and suppliers
  • Automated notifications sent to business owners for upcoming notice period dates and contract expiry dates
  • Workflows for new contracts and contract renewals
  • Workflows for supplier due diligence assessments and the ability to document results in an easy-to-manage database 
  • An intuitive user interface to ensure the team are engaged and enjoy working with the tool 

During the tender process, they learned a lot about the types of services available on the market and completed a benchmarking activity based on the core functional requirements listed above and the nice-to-haves.

While cost was also a consideration, Funding Circle also took a keen interest in the potential of the solution and the scope to which the supplier was able to innovate and provide invaluable tools and modules to make the Procurement team the best and most organised function it can be. Gatekeeper was the best fit to meet both the core requirements and innovative potential.

With its centralised repository, automated workflows and notifications and easy-to-use platform, Gatekeeper has helped Funding Circle to gain greater control, visibility and governance. The Procurement function isn’t only better organised, but can now easily identify and mitigate third-party risk, despite working with an increasing number of third-parties. 

Before working with Gatekeeper, Funding Circle sometimes missed contract renewal deadlines as managing third-party contracts became too difficult through Google Drive alone.  By taking the opportunity to digitalise their contract database with Gatekeeper, the business is now able to proactively manage all contracts and make informed business decisions that allow them to have excellent control and visibility of spend. Funding Circle has since been able to terminate contracts that no longer serve them of a total value of £1m. 

We’re thrilled to have helped Funding Circle better manage third-party suppliers and mitigate risk, whilst driving £1m in contract savings,” says Patrick O’Connor, CEO at Gatekeeper. "Delivering ongoing value to our customers is important to us, that’s why we’re always innovating our platform with new integrations and features. Funding Circle is now in complete control of risk and spend - and we’re happy to have helped them into the driver’s seat."

During the implementation process, Funding Circle experienced internal changes but were able to easily realign overall goals with Gatekeeper. The team made all necessary changes efficiently, helping to track progress and make any transitions as smooth as possible. 

“The Gatekeeper team was extremely responsive and always available to answer any questions I had. We had weekly catch ups to ensure all things were progressing as they should and during this process we built excellent relationships with the team. I really enjoy working with each and every one of them!” - 

Krupa Patel, Head of Procurement.

By using Gatekeeper, Funding Circle has centralised its supplier contracts, made £1m in savings, built due-diligence workflows and gained total visibility of spend. With this level of control, the business can continue to outsource to third-party suppliers without any of the pains previously experienced. 

For more information on how Gatekeeper is helping its customers manage their third-parties effectively, contact us today.

Shannon Smith
Shannon Smith

Shannon Smith bridges the gap between expert knowledge and practical VCLM application. Through her extensive writing, and years within the industry, she has become a trusted resource for Procurement and Legal professionals seeking to navigate the ever-changing landscape of vendor management, contract management and third-party risk management.


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