Basware Analytics – new product joins the portfolio

Basware have today announced a significant addition to their product range, with the launch of Basware Analytics, a spend analysis product that integrates with their existing suite.

The business, which is head-quartered in Helsinki, is the largest P2P and e-invoicing firm in the world outside the mega-ERP providers, with revenue of around 130 million Euros. They’ve moved further into the purchase to pay space over the years, having started really in the invoicing area, and this latest addition takes them more firmly into positioning as a genuinely broad e-Procurement solutions provider.

I had a quick look at the new product last week, and it will be an interesting option without a doubt for Basware clients. It has many of the standard spend analytics functions that we’ve come to expect – allowing you to dig into expenditure by supplier, category business unit and so on. That obviously is key to understanding current supply position, opportunities for consolidation, and compliance issues. So far, so good, but also pretty standard for such a tool.  However, the new Basware product has a couple of interesting distinguishing features.

The first is just how intuitive, simple and attractive the tool is to use and work with. Basware are using a graphics and reporting tool called Tableau to run the user interface element of the platform. That certainly makes the whole experience very impressive, allowing the user to cut the data in different ways, with very intuitive drill-down options, attractive graphs, maps and charts.

Secondly, and perhaps more fundamentally, because the product is designed to link with the wider Basware functionality, it isn’t just picking up spend data from the invoicing process. It also takes data from the whole P2P cycle including, for instance, from requisitioning and ordering activities. What this means is you can run reports that just aren’t possible with a purely invoice-driven analytics approach. For instance, the user can look at committed but not yet billed spend, in order to get a profile of future committed outgoing cash flows, by currency or country if required.

It’s clear how useful this might be, not just to procurement but perhaps even more so to finance, who traditionally have been more interested in commitment accounting then  procurement tends to be. Another sign of closer working between procurement and finance functions perhaps, or at least an opportunity for that?

Here's how Basware are positioning the benefits:

"End-to-End Purchase-to-Pay Coverage – making it easier to uncover enterprise-wide cost saving by delivering immediate and complete Purchase-to-Pay spend transparency so that you can see how much you spend, when and with whom.

Actionable Performance Visibility – visually stunning interactive reports and dashboards that make it easy for users to proactively manage KPI’s, spot problems, identify root causes and take remedial action across the entire Purchase-to-Pay cycle.

Easy Insights Anytime, Anywhere – unrivalled usability, making it easy for users to create ad hoc reports whenever they need them  - and then share the intelligence with colleagues via browser and tablet applications".

The module will be sold by Basware as an additional product - it’s worth noting that it isn’t really targeted as a stand-alone spend analytics product to firms who aren’t already Basware clients.  But it looks like an impressive addition to the portfolio, and we’d suggest it certainly makes it less likely that a Basware client, who wants to do serious spend analysis, is going to do anything other than buy this product (assuming the pricing isn’t ridiculous).

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