Pilot vs Zeni

Pilot vs Zeni

Written by 
Pilot Team
August 30, 2023
Pilot vs Zeni

You might have noticed that we're writing about the difference between our services and a competitor. We've done our best to give them a fair shake because we want you to make an informed decision.

Pilot and Zeni are two back-office providers offering bookkeeping, CFO, and tax services. But which provider is right for you? This review compares Pilot and Zeni side-by-side to help inform you when choosing the best provider to serve your accounting needs.

Let’s compare*

By the numbers

Pilot Zeni
Startups served 1,750+ 350+
Office locations San Francisco, California
Nashville, Tennessee
Pune, India
Palo Alto, California
Employees 300+ 250+
Amount raised $170m $41m
Principal investors Sequoia
Jeff Bezos
Index Ventures
Elevation Capital
Saama Capital
Year founded 2016 2019
Services offered Bookkeeping
Tax Prep
Tax Consulting
R&D Tax Credit
CFO Services
Controller Services
Cap Table Management
Bill Pay
Tax Prep
R&D Tax Credit
CFO Services
Controller Services
Payroll Manager
Bill Pay
Pricing Starting at $499/month Starting at $549/month

*As of August 2023

What reporting does each provider make available?

Pilot’s offering includes a number of reports that go above and beyond the standard financial statements: the Flux Insights report identifies which transactions drive notable fluctuations in your spending. The Recurring Vendors report lets you discover opportunities to cut non-essential spending. And best of all, you’re not limited to these reports. Our CFO services team can track any of the KPIs of your business in a way that is most helpful to you.

Zeni’s service offers a set of templated dashboards that update daily. The notion of real-time updates is compelling, but we’d encourage caution here. The gold standard across the industry (at both small and large firms) is a month-end close process with explicit monthly reconciliation, so that you can have confidence in the accuracy of the work. While a daily view can potentially give you a sense for how things are trending, it’s not a substitute for the accuracy of monthly financials, which is why it hasn’t been adopted by the industry more generally.

Why Pilot?

There’s a reason we’re the largest startup-focused accounting firm in the United States. Our customers mention that they enjoy working with Pilot because we’re:

  • Scalable. We support teams ranging from two people in a garage that have just raised a pre-seed round all the way to companies with hundreds of employees, and an on-staff VP Finance. No matter your needs, we can grow with you all the way until you’re ready to bring the function fully in-house. In short: we’re the last accounting firm you’ll ever need to hire. (And that’s good, because switching firms can be costly in your scarcest resource: founder time.)
  • Experienced. We’re trusted by literally thousands of high-growth startups because we’ve helped countless startups achieve success. We understand the unique challenges that come with scaling your startup, and our team has the expertise you need to reach your goals.
  • Comprehensive. Being a Pilot customer doesn’t just mean that your accounting is great. It also means that you’re able to tap into everything Pilot has to offer, whether that’s a call with our founding team, networking with other founders in our Slack group, or getting timely updates and content on what’s happening in the startup ecosystem generally.

We’d love to work with you. To talk to an expert on our team and find out what Pilot can do for you, please email us at info@pilot.com.

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