When I sat down with Francisco Raimundo of Stratesys to talk about the company’s new product on SAP Store, U-Verify for SAP Fieldglass, I did not expect to hear about a product development group that acts like a team of entrepreneurs.
After all, Stratesys is a multinational company headquartered in Spain now celebrating its 25th year, with a mature product called U-Qualify and lengthy tenure as an SAP partner. No matter. The developers, when given the opportunity to build a new product to solve a knotty business problem, tackled the project with great zeal, Raimundo told me. “They were happy to have the challenge, working nights and weekends to develop something special.”
Based in Sao Paolo, Brazil, Raimundo is CEO of the Latin America region for Stratesys. He explained that U-Verify was originally conceived to help companies doing business in Brazil to simplify documentation procedures for compliance, which are notoriously complex in that country. Clients were asking for software that would integrate with SAP Ariba procurement solutions. At first, he said, the developers thought they were building a solution with a rather narrow objective, but quickly realized the higher potential for global, cross-industry application.
Authenticating a Market Need
Here’s why. Every company that contracts with outside vendors – just about all of them – must manage a huge volume of documents of various types that must be verified. These documents comprise information about safety, legal, and environmental compliance, sustainability, building security, infrastructure, employees, capital risk, and so forth — much of it confidential and highly sensitive. Similar documentation requirements exist for contingent workers, especially in industries like utilities, mining, retail, and banking, among others. Hence, the U-Verify solution integrates with SAP Ariba solutions for supplier verification and SAP Fieldglass solutions for employee verification.
“Every worker you are hiring with a third-party supplier must be proven to have training, licenses, medical certification, security clearance – whatever is relevant for the assignment or project,” he explained. “For example, these people could be working with dangerous machines or under hazardous conditions, whether in mining or manufacturing or maintenance or chemicals or healthcare. Their competence and credentials must be validated.”
There is little standardization; requirements differ from one region to another and from one company to the next. “A single company could be managing documents for 20,000 contract employees annually,” he added, “just to give you an idea of the scope.”
U-Verify comes to the rescue with automatic analysis of external workforce documentation, integrating with SAP Fieldglass solutions for contingent workforce management, services procurement, worker and documentation tracking, and so on. U-Verify uses machine learning to analyze the documentation rapidly, detect inconsistencies and discrepancies, and alert external suppliers, workers, and managers as relevant. A document management repository with smart search tools locates and checks historical documentation provided by the supplier. Imagine this work being done manually, and you can see why U-Verify has become a fast seller on SAP Store.
I asked Raimundo why the development team was so keen on this initiative.
“Since our company is based in Spain, this type of project would normally be handled by the development team in Europe,” he replied. “But we thought this would be a good opportunity to harness the spirit and creativity of our team in Latin America. The technology was not new to them, but many had not yet worked on a development project utilizing machine learning. They enjoyed rising to the challenge.”
Validating Compliance with Encryption and Security
In 2020, just as Stratesys was ready to roll out U-Verify to the SAP field sales team in Spain, a customer there approached SAP looking for a solution to automate document analysis. “It was a pure coincidence,” Raimundo said. For the first project in Spain, the Stratesys team did need to adapt U-Verify to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), he added. Integration with GDPR-compliant SAP software, plus close collaboration with SAP developers, enabled the Stratesys team to encrypt sensitive information and create a safe, secure environment for contracts and content. Today, U-Verify has customers from México to Italy, from the UK to South Africa, and, of course, Brazil.
That breadth of coverage can be attributed in large part to SAP Store, Raimundo remarked. “It’s a powerful tool that give us both visibility and the opportunity to collaborate with the SAP account executives around the world, who recommend our product to their customers. This gives us great confidence in the future and our ongoing partnership with SAP.”
Why not prove its value for yourself? Start now with a free demo on SAP Store.
Rajiv Nema is senior director of SAP Store Partner Solutions.