A machine that lets users upload an image of a receipt and automatically match it to a transaction in real time has just been launched.
Tide, the digital business banking platform behind it insists its the next-generation expense management feature is the first product of its kind on the market.
Tide uses a machine-learning model to match receipts to transactions, with accuracy improving with greater use.
It is to be rolled out for free to all 140,000 Tide members after research revealed that SMEs spend 30 per cent of their time on admin tasks that do not contribute to their bottom line,, and that 54 per cent store and manage physical receipts to hand over to their accountants.
The receipt importer is simple to use with users ensuring they received a receipt when spending on their Tide card, taking a picture of the receipt, and uploading the image into the receipt importer.
Tide will then automatically match the receipt to the correct transaction. This can then be used to support bookkeeping and reporting obligations. Multiple receipts can be uploaded at a time as part of a weekly admin task and the product is also available via app.
Ali Travis, VP of Business Services at Tide said: “UK businesses are required by HMRC to keep detailed financial records of all business spending for up to five years. These records are crucial when filing VAT, corporation tax and self assessments.
“However, there is now no need to keep hard copies of receipts, and we have now made it as easy as possible for SMEs to go digital.
“We believe this product will be game-changing for small business owners. Storing receipts electronically and auto-matching them to transactions will eliminate a lot of the time spent and anxiety felt when submitting tax returns, and will mean people can manage their own and their teams’ expenses on the move.”
Later this year Tide will develop this feature further, introducing functionality that will allow SMEs to keep track of their VAT liability within the app, and automatically filing their tax return.
Tide CEO Oliver Prill said: “We are acutely aware of the pressure on SMEs to be more efficient and to cut down on the time spent on tasks that don’t help them to grow.
Tide is all about creating smart, integrated tools to help people run their businesses more smoothly. The developments announced today represent an evolution in our connected platform, allowing members to integrate their payments, expenses and accountancy software.
“This connectivity helps members to keep on top of their admin without having to think about it, and without having to dedicate time that could be better spent building their businesses.”