Tipalti has announced the extension of its Accounts Payables platform with a new solution, Tipalti Expenses. The news emerged at its annual Illuminate conference, held virtually today. The new expense management solution integrates fully with the Tiplati platform. It provides a natural extension to the automated AP, procurement, cards and mass global payments functionality that exists already.
The firm also launched a physical version of the Tipalti Card. Initially available in the US, it will enable customers to select whether to use a physical or virtual credit or a debit card.
Roby Baruch, Chief Product Officer at Tipalti, commented, “In today’s climate, finance leaders require real-time data and full visibility to forecast future spending and scale accordingly. Tipalti provides the most innovative and easy-to-use solutions to make this happen all from one platform. The addition of Tipalti Expenses and the physical Tipalti Card are the final pieces of the most comprehensive global finance automation platform available.”
Enterprise Times also asked Baruch some questions about the announcement.
A key part of many organisations’ outgoings are expenses. While organisations often look to leverage solutions such as Expensify or SAP Concur, extending the AP automation platform also makes sense. The new Tipalti solution will enable organisations to manage all employee spend. It will also deliver visibility of expenditure to suppliers that procurement and finance may not initially be aware of.
The solution includes a mobile app available for iOS and Android. The app enables employees to create and submit expenses. Employees can take a photo of their expense claim. The system will populate the data fields automatically, and employees can check and then submit the expense claims. Managers can use the same mobile app to quickly review and approve or reject expenses. Behind the mobile and web interface is the power of the Tipalti platform. Organisations can leverage global payments, compliance checks, and workflow engine to automate expenses.
Enterprise Times asked Baruch whether Tipalti developed the solution or OEM’d one. Baruch replied, “Tipalti Expenses is an in-house comprehensive, purpose-built solution for automating and managing employee-initiated spending and reimbursements, all in one system. While it already integrates with many ERPs and accounting systems for reporting and reconciliation, we plan to expand our partnerships and further grow the Tipalti Expenses ecosystem.”
Looking forward, ET asked Baruch whether it would look to integrate a travel booking solution into the platform. Baruch answered, “We are considering integrating travel systems as part of our 2024 roadmap.”
The benefits of Tipalti Expenses
Customers will gain several advantages from the expanded payments platform. It can support payments in over 196 countries and 120 currencies. With automation, finance teams can reimburse employees quickly, no matter where they are located. The platform supports six payment methods. When asked about these, Baruch stated, “Tipalti’s global payment methods include wire transfers, ACH, BACS, SEPA, global ACH, paper checks, prepaid debit cards and PayPal across 196 countries and in 120 currencies. Tipalti provides a variety of payment methods that work best for the payees and delivers automated notifications for complete visibility into payment statuses.”
Tipalti will also leverage its existing integrations to several ERP solutions. Ensuring that the appropriate transactions are captured in the relevant general ledger accounts and automatically reconciled within the Finance solution.
Furthermore, the automation of expenses policies and processes in place reduces the risk of fraud. The spend limits are adhered to more often, or exceptions are noted far earlier for approval than with a manual solution. This further reduces the manual workload for employees, managers and finance teams.
Kevin Permenter, Research Director, Financial Applications at IDC, “Tipalti’s expense management solution is a timely response to the pressing needs of finance teams. As organizations increasingly prioritize automation and streamlined workflows in the face of market uncertainties, Tipalti Expenses offers a useful set of tools for all aspects of expense management.
“By addressing the pain point of manual reimbursement with its robust global payment infrastructure and providing an employee-friendly experience with its intuitive mobile and web interfaces, Tipalti’s offering will be a welcomed addition to the market with the potential to save users both time and resources.”
Why is this important
Accounts Payable across many firms require automation. Many finance teams spend a lot of time checking and managing the reimbursement of expense claims by employees. Employees often find the process onerous and time-consuming. Were expenses are recharged to customers, a manual process can delay invoicing and impact cash flow. A Tipalti survey of CFOs identified that 70% of firms have already invested in or plan to invest in digital technology to automate finance processes. 67% of respondents see expenses as a very important area to digitise.
Existing customers also see the importance of this innovation. Rami Darouiche, Controller at T3 Micro, a creator of innovative styling tools, commented, “As a global company, centralizing our expenses processes and policies is a major challenge. Without proper oversight and checks and balances, employee spend can quickly become out of control and a huge pain point for any company, not to mention the challenges of ensuring employees are reimbursed quickly and in the currency they require. Tipalti Expenses checks all of those boxes. It provides an easy-to-use interface for employees and managers and the ability to submit, approve and reimburse globally at lightning speed.”
A year after Tipalti launched a virtual card, the firm has added a physical card to its offerings. Available in the US initially, the solution is backed by Visa and Stripe. It means that existing virtual card users such as FloSports, Achieving The Dream and Encoura can provide their organisations with physical or virtual credit or debit cards on demand. The card transactions automatically flow into the payments platform, delivering full visibility of card spending and improving the automatic reconciliation and the controls available.
Tipalti highlights three advantages the new cards offer.
- Automatic Reconciliation: Card transactions are automatically captured and processed like other payment methods. This eliminates the need to chase internal stakeholders for supporting documents or manually enter data into the ERP. Automatic receipt collection and cardholder transaction review also improve GL accuracy and reduce manual finance workloads.
- Centralized Spend and Improved Visibility: Finance teams can manage and consolidate all employee, supplier, and payee spend in one place, whether it’s with Tipalti Card, ACH, wire transfer, PayPal or checks.
- Spend Control: Physical and virtual cards are issued with robust controls, including spending limits, vendor limits and approved categories. Finance teams can also pre-approve purchases with card request approval workflows tailored to companies’ processes and rules, suspend or cancel a card anytime, and quickly identify and resolve unrecognized merchant payments in real-time.
ET asked Baruch whether it would make the Tipalti Card available outside the US and if so when? The question is relevant after an announcement earlier this week that it intends further expansion across Europe.
Baruch replied, “Currently, businesses can use Tipalti Card to pay global vendors. Expanding Tipalti Card to the UK and EU markets is on our roadmap.”
Enterprise Times: What does this mean
Illuminate does not disappoint. The expansion into expenses makes sense. Finance organisations that do not already have an expense solution should seriously look at what Tipalti offers.
Pricing for the add-on solution is not available. Still, it is hopefully competitive with other expense vendors out there that are more mature and offer travel booking and other features already. It will be interesting to see how Tipalti expands the solution moving forward, especially around expenditure reporting across expenses and procurement.
Where Tipalti does have the advantage is that it has a robust payments platform built to scale. It also has many integrations that will make it attractive to organisations. The Tipalti card is also a natural addition, with firms and people still using physical plastic to make purchases face-to-face.