When we last discussed Basware two years ago, we did a deep dive into their solution, particularly with respect to their invoice and payment plan capability, their Basware Commerce Network (BCN) and supplier/buyer portal, and their analytics offering. You can review this coverage in our four part series: Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part IV.
Since that coverage, there have been a few updates to the platform in these areas, but the biggest news is the recent Verian acquisition that extended their procurement offering, and we’ll cover this shortly.
From an invoice processing point of view, the match algorithm has been improved, as has the interface to the invoice. The upgraded UI makes it very easy to see not only unmatched invoices, but unmatched data, the closest match purchase orders, and all associated history of both. The pop-up windows allow a user to view the invoice and PO side by side, as well as the full audit trail if need be. From a payment plan point of view, the solution supports very powerful rules that allow a payment plan to match as many invoices as needed, and be automatically paid and approved subject to the rules.
From the BCN point of view, it’s growing year over year, at a transaction growth rate of 37%+, and should be processing 250M invoices by the end of 2018 and continues to add digital signature and tax compliance as more and more countries add regulations and allow digital signatures. The supplier portals have gotten a face lift, and it’s easy for a supplier to not only manage all communication, but multiple versions of their catalog for multiple buyers, as well as multiple price lists for different order volumes.
Their analytics offering keeps getting extended and improved as well, with the standard reports and dashboards now meeting 90% to 95% of what a typical buyer or AP clerk would ever need to look at. The reports have been grouped into three categories: spend, which are focussed on actual spend; procurement, which are focussed on overall process metrics and quality; and AP, which focus on financial data, process metrics, and overall end-to-end P2P KPIs.
The spend reports capture actual invoice data and payments and summarize, among other things, spend under control in a reference period, spend by supplier, spend by category, percentage of supplier spend under control, payment terms, and top n suppliers. The Procurement reports are focussed on quality and metrics. The quality reports focus on supplier quality and summarize active suppliers, (average) quality metric summary, rank by quality, rank by category, etc. The metrics focus on value. PO counts, by supplier, and by value. Average total order time by supplier, by category, and geography. Average procurement task time (for requisition approval, PO flips, etc.) and duration. The AP reports focus on finance, process, and KPIs. The financial reports summarize cash flow, cash flow forecast, discount availability, discounted invoices, discount trend, and similar financial data. The process reports summarize invoices — open, exception free, resolved exceptions, and average resolution time; tasks and durations; and average supplier acknowledgement/response times. The KPI reports summarize overall e-Invoice metrics, spend under control, auto-match performance, on-time payment, and average cycle times. It’s a very complete set of reports.
In other words, even though everything discussed above was quite good when we reviewed it back in 2014, Basware has kept developing and improving and streamlining, but that’s not all Basware has to offer. In our next post in this series, Part VI, we will discuss the other capabilities Basware has to offer.