Industry-first conversational assistant speeds payments and travel booking for users while giving finance departments real-time spend visibility
Today, Tradeshift announced Tradeshift® Go, a free virtual assistant with a conversational user interface that simplifies payments and travel booking. Go gives users at mid-sized companies an easier way to buy, while providing finance teams with the transparency and control they need for better spend management. Go also comes with a travel booking “skill,” enabled by Tradeshift’s recent acquisition of Hyper Travel, a chat-based travel assistant app.
“Go makes company spending as simple as using a consumer product like Amazon Alexa,” said Sarika Garg, Tradeshift’s Senior Vice President & General Manager. “Tradeshift is bringing consumer-grade experiences by leveraging the latest advances in AI and machine learning to transform age-old problems at work.”
Go also overcomes common problems that have long plagued mid-sized businesses, including time-consuming credit card reconciliations, credit card fraud, and the inability to efficiently process transactions. In fact, lack of resources can slow down the overall process and stifle an employee’s ability to get what they need, when they need it.
Traditional solutions geared to address these challenges typically create more processes and bureaucracy than is necessary for smaller companies, and only allow for spend analysis after the buying is done. Employees using these solutions are still tasked with juggling department credit cards, managing expense reports, and chasing reimbursement. Go breaks this cycle.
“Tradeshift Go is a simple way for our employees to get fast approvals and cut down on expense report management,” said Sandeep Shroff, CEO of MyStartupCFO.com. “We handle the financial books of hundreds of growing companies, which means that being nimble and having transparency is important—Go gives us both and will save us a ton of time. Go was an easy decision to make.”
“We are seeing a new generation of expectations from employees on the ease of buying goods and services. The idea of a virtual assistant that is accessed via a simple chat interface to help employees find what they need, get approval, buy and pay for items makes buying more natural,” according to Christopher Sawchuk, Principal & Global Procurement Advisory Practice Leader, The Hackett Group. “Enhanced visibility into spend is much needed in the mid-market while larger companies strive to gain a better understanding and influence over more spend.”
How Go Works
Go does not replace humans. Go takes the best of machine learning and human intelligence to deliver a fluid buying experience. Go’s chat interface, Go Assistant, helps employees get faster, simpler purchase approvals, and pre-approved, single-use virtual credit cards to make payments. Accessible via a web browser, mobile app, or email, users can ask the assistant for approval to buy products such as office supplies. Once approved, the user completes the purchase with a virtual credit card that bills against an existing corporate credit card. The employee never sees the corporate credit card number, thus reducing the risk of fraud.
Go’s analytics dashboard tracks individual transactions that include buyers, approvers, and department codes, and sends email alerts to finance teams when abnormal spending patterns are detected or budget limitations are exceeded.
The Go Assistant can also book work trips by finding and suggesting flights, rental cars, and other details simply and easily through the chat interface. A user may even store travel preferences, which the Go Assistant remembers and applies.
Tradeshift plans to rapidly expand Go’s skillset from travel booking to encompass a large range of specialized tasks, including legal, logistics and consulting.
Tradeshift is a global network and platform that helps companies innovate the way they buy, pay and work together. Tradeshift connects 800,000 users across 190 countries and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Copenhagen, New York, London, Paris, Suzhou, Tokyo and Munich.