Basware InvoiceReady brings AP automation to SMEs

If you’re a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) processing 5,000 to 50,000 invoices a year, you’re better off automating the process than putting in extra man-hours. Basware traditionally targets the enterprise segment with our procure-to-pay (P2P) offering, but with InvoiceReady it now has an SME solution ready to go.

InvoiceReady is unlike any other Basware product in terms of workflow, functionality, and implementation. However, there is one asset that does unite both solutions: the Basware Network.

Today, InvoiceReady can be seen as an AP (Accounts Payable) automation tool, a suite with all the P2P capabilities you could want as an SME. Think of invoice approvals, throwing them into workflows, matching with purchase orders, contract management with automation for budgets, expense processing, archiving - in short, everything within the financial chain.

InvoiceReady as a new business unit

Compared to Basware's full P2P platform, InvoiceReady can be deployed very quickly.

InvoiceReady is a cloud platform that operates in a SaaS model. The initial focus was on the Nordic countries in recent years. But now Basware is rolling out the platform to Belgium and the Netherlands with a renewed focus on a global offering centrally managed from Finland with support from local offices.

This global focus today is easily achieved thanks to the Basware Network. It covers all local e-invoicing requirements such as VAT, taxes, and compliance. The global reach helps us, but on the AP Automation side, InvoiceReady is a completely different product compared to Basware's P2P offering.

Ready for SMEs

Dany De Budt, General Manager Belgium and the Netherlands at Basware, says of InvoiceReady "It's a completely different package, different systems, and databases. In Belgium, we introduced InvoiceReady in 2015 with a dozen customers immediately in the first months, but it lacked focus. Now in 2020 and 2021, we are reintroducing it."

For De Budt, InvoiceReady is an important component towards an upgrade where customers move up to Basware's complete P2P platform. SMEs may not be able to handle such an enterprise solution today, but after years of growth, an upgrade may be in order. "The investments made in InvoiceReady are not wasted. We take everything around automation with us so that the customer does not have to start from scratch," says De Budt.

The package sounds like a mini version of the Basware proposition, but De Budt immediately counters that. "You have to see InvoiceReady as a straightjacket with basic automation for invoice processing and everything around it. SMEs want a focused offering that can be rolled out quickly and fits within the current organisation." The platform is aimed at processing 5,000 to 50,000 invoices on an annual basis. Anyone above that will be welcomed by Basware to the "big" P2P parent platform.

Who is InvoiceReady suitable for?

Every SME transforms at its own pace, but when is AP automation useful for an organisation? Let’s consider a modern construction company. Depending on the size of the project, a construction site has to process 200 invoices and orders on a weekly basis, related to concrete, bricks, or safety equipment, among other things. By not automating the AP process, this construction company quickly becomes a paper mill that can consume a lot of man-hours.

"In such situations, we go through all the processes with the customer and analyse what is needed to automate. We start with our total package from Basware, but if the profile does not (yet) fit in, we suggest InvoiceReady," says De Budt. "We get them started, and then the head office in Finland takes over which is very easy because it’s a cloud platform. You can work on it from anywhere."

With InvoiceReady, Basware aims to open up its technology to a wider audience and help SMEs realise that numerous manual, time-intensive financial processes can be conveniently automated. In Belgium and the Netherlands, there is already a solid basis, but there are still many SMEs that can and should make the switch.