Fintech startup Jojonomic out to redefine claims management
By Masyitha Baziad March 30, 2016
- Manual reimbursement can cost a company up to US$400 per employee per year
- Jojonomic Pro allows companies to stay on top, while easing the process for users
PILES of receipts, some of them already fading, eventually fill employees’ wallets at the end of each month, waiting to be pasted onto A4 sheets, then submitted to the company for approval.
This manual reimbursement process can be painful, costing companies even more time and money, on top of the claims they have to dish out.
Jakarta-based financial technology (fintech) startup Jojonomic hopes to tackle this issue with its automated reimbursement management system, Jojonomic Pro.
“Manual reimbursement practices can potentially cost a company up to US$400 per employee per year,” its chief executive officer Indrasto Budisantoso told Digital News Asia (DNA) in Jakarta recently.
These losses are in the form of wasted time, or even fraud and abuse, he added, saying the figures above came from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners and Jojonomic’s own straw poll of about 20 employees in Jakarta and its surrounding areas.
The poll revealed that employees could take approximately one to two hours to complete their manual reimbursement process each month.
Jojonomic Pro is targeted at companies with more than 30 employees that have to manage piles of claims requests each month.
For employers, it features a reimbursement dashboard which can be used to set up and monitor company expenses in real time. The company can collect all the claims filed by employees digitally, set budget limitations for each, approve claims, and create a comprehensive report of claims.
Employees, on the other hand, can file their claims through the Jojonomic app on their smartphones by taking pictures of receipts, then sending this information across to the company’s reimbursement dashboard.
With its Web-and-app integration, Jojonomic Pro also makes it possible for supervisors or finance personnel to approve claims via the app.
“Companies these days should focus more on developing their business, rather than worrying about financial and administration processes,” said Indrasto.
“With an automated system, the company can increase the efficiency of the reimbursement process by 70% each month, allowing employees to spend more time on their job,” he claimed.
The fintech startup charges a subscription fee of US$4 per user per month, which means a company with 30 employees would pay US$120 per month or about US$1,440 per year.
However, those which sign up for an annual deal get more than 50% off, paying only US$700 per year for 30 users.
Local and regional needs
Automated reimbursement apps have been around, such as Concur (acquired by German software giant SAP SE) and Expensify.
However, Indrastro (pic) is confident that Jojonomic can compete in and win the South-East Asian market.
“We are positioning our system as the one that understand the regional business environment better.
“In Indonesia for example, the rupiah has long digits compared with other currencies, and our system supports this,” he said.
Currently, Jojonomic supports around 110 currencies, allowing business travellers to use the reimbursement system as well.
Jojonomic Pro also supports cash advances – money that is given to an employee at the start of the month.
“In emerging markets, where credit card penetration is still low and salaries are just enough, cash advances are a common practice,” said Indrastro.
“We put features like this in our system so that companies have a complete local reimbursement management system that suits their financial processes,” he added.
With the Asean Economy Community (AEC) having kicked in and more local businesses expanding regionally, Indrasto is optimistic about his startup’s future too.
“Currently, our system serves 40 companies in Indonesia, the majority of them medium-scale companies with 30 to fewer than 100 employees,” he said.
Indonesia’s payment gateway Veritrans, financial services provider Trimegah Securities, aCommerce Indonesia, MatahariMall, and Tokopedia are a few of its clients.
The startup is going to officially launch a more advanced version of Jojonomic Pro next month in a bid to get more South-East Asian companies on board.
“We are not targeting specific countries to penetrate in 2016, but we will start promoting ourselves regionally,” Indrasto said.
The upgraded system will feature an improved dashboard, as well as a dedicated app for the premium version.
Currently, the reimbursement system is embedded in the Jojonomic general app, which also has free personal finance management features.
“We will continue to improve the system to be able to accommodate more simultaneous users,” said Indrasto, adding that it can now accommodate more than 150,000 users accessing the system at the same time.
Change of direction … for good
Indrastro said that his startup is expecting to secure Series-A funding this year. Jojonomic first announced its presence last October when it secured undisclosed early stage funding from East Ventures.
At the time, the company’s focus was on helping Indonesians build healthy financial management habits, via a free personal finance app.
The app allowed users to input daily transactions so that they could measure and monitor their spending habits, helping them manage their finances until the next paycheque.
Jojonomic launched a beta version of the app last August, and declared that it had hooked thousands of user accounts across the Android and iOS platforms.
However, Indrasto admitted that building healthy financial management habits is not something that can be done overnight.
“We realised that people were not ready – they lacked the discipline to input all daily transactions every day,” he said.
So Jojonomic tweaked its strategy and focus – or in startup parlance, pivoted. Instead of offering a free personal finance app to individuals, it decided to offer a premium and paid reimbursement management system to businesses.
“The reimbursement management system is a gap we are filling. Nobody has done it in South-East Asia,” Indrasto declared.
But even with Jojonomic Pro as its flagship, the company is not throwing out its free personal finance app, although he admitted it would not be getting as much attention as the paid service.
Jojonomic got some Silicon Valley validation too, when it tested the beta version of Jojonomic Pro at the Google Campus in January, as one of eight participants in the second batch of the US tech giant’s Launchpad Accelerator.
The Launchpad Accelerator programme is a two-week intensive mentoring programme to help developers monetise and scale their apps.
Taking part allowed Jojonomic to improve its solution, according to Indrasto. “We are convinced that Jojonomic Pro is a problem-solver, scalable, and money-making at the same time,” he said.
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