It is becoming increasingly common for banks, financial institutions, gaming, and transportation companies to verify clients’ identity documents online. But this can be risky so, to prevent fraud and other illegal activities, organizations need advanced technology that combines artificial intelligence and machine learning.
With such tools, they can analyze separate pieces of information—for example, a passport and a selfie—and check if the document provided seems genuine and whether the person’s biometrics from the selfie match the photo on the document.
One of the most prominent providers in this space is Onfido—an established SaaS and RegTech business. It provides state-of-the-art identity verification software as a cloud-based service, so businesses can access and use the technology without needing to install or maintain anything locally.
Onfido’s solutions answered a growing need for businesses so perfectly, and its success arrived at such a rate, that the company’s billing and collections systems were lagging, unprepared for the volumes and transaction complexities involved.
“Our legacy tool was an internally built database that was doing the calculations for us,” says Gordon Laing, senior company operations manager at Onfido, “When I joined the company, we were already outgrowing what it had been designed to handle. This problem was becoming a priority as we were bringing a lot of new products to market, which required engineers to make a lot of changes to this platform.”
Onfido’s legacy platform had been designed to handle up to 10 million events per month, so when it reached 25 million, it was struggling. Company engineers had to assist with the monthly processing of invoicing data in batches to allow enough time to process, check, and run fixes. But the batches would take over 24 hours to run and regularly time out. This had a knock-on effect on processes downstream and delayed the SLAs for business reporting, finance, and other month-end processes.
“Another problem was the audits,” says Laing. “Our auditors and customers would ask how we got certain calculations and it would take a full squad of people to trace back through the logic in the system to explain it. Reconciling the data was painful every time.” Onfido’s engineers had to be taken off their primary jobs to look through the database to help with audits, too.
The company needed a tool that was right for the job and could grow with the business. Building one was not an option due to the time, effort, and risks involved. But finding the right partner proved just as challenging. Nobody had the right solution and the only tools offered were too bespoke to maintain internally.
One of the product features that impressed Onfido the most was the possibility of handling compound aggregations—putting two products together into one cost. This was a huge challenge that had always been too complex to manage well.
“m3ter was able to demo it in no more than 5 minutes on the call when nobody else could even get their head around the calculation, let alone demo it,” says Laing.
At the end of the day, the finance team gets the same file as it used to. But the company effort required to get that file is now negligible. What’s more, the accuracy of the information has helped the business see the true scale of its revenue leakage, which had been estimated up to 1% of total revenue.
The company found a number of customers not being billed. The old system wouldn’t invoice them because there was no pricing linked to their account. “We had customers who hadn't received an invoice in three years,” comments Laing.
Onfido is now preventing tens of thousands of dollars of revenue leakage each month. It is also saving company time and effort, and providing one source of truth by seamlessly integrating with Salesforce. “We're really pleased with that,” says Laing. “Trying to reconcile contract data in Salesforce versus usage data elsewhere was very difficult. Being able to rely purely on Salesforce for commercial data is huge.”
The finance team finally has confidence in the invoicing flow, the whole end-of-month file can now be processed in one day, and the team is always able to meet its KPIs and SLAs by the third day of each month, which is something that was not possible previously.
Onfido’s auditability is significantly improved. “We can go in and see the calculations on any given day and any given product,” says Laing. “We can see the input from the platform into m3ter and how it was handled with only a few clicks. We have full end-to-end visibility, which has been a huge win for us.”
It’s not just m3ter’s expertise but also its approach to customers that makes it a valuable partner to Onfido. “We couldn't have a better partner,” says Laing. “Especially with some of our challenging requests, their complexity, and pushing what m3ter was built and designed for. And we've never heard ‘no’. It's always: ‘We'll find a way to do that’ or ‘Let us think about how we can best do that’.”
Apart from relying on m3ter to find solutions to some of its challenges, Onfido is also finding that the partnership pushes it to improve its own processes. Getting pushback in some instances where the company needed to fix a root cause of a problem before a new solution could be implemented was appreciated and valued.
“It’s great for the business to hear,” comments Laing. “Sometimes it takes that external voice for us to realize that we need to fix something ourselves instead of pushing it elsewhere and making it ten times more complicated.”
Onfido now has a solid base upon which more improvements can be built, and the next big step will be automating manual billing. Between 20–22.5 percent of the company’s revenue is billed manually every month due to bespoke custom contracts. The plan is to get that number below 1 percent.
Onfido’s plans to have a fully automated quote-to-cash process. This will mean very little manual overhead and potential for extending upstream and reaching a point where customer acquisition could also be automated for certain customer types. “The vision is to have the system so integrated and automated that it will require minimal input and just work in the background,” adds Laing. “That’s the Holy Grail and m3ter’s ultimate role at Onfido.”
Onfido makes digital identity simple. The Onfido Real Identity Platform allows businesses to tailor identity verification methods to individual needs in a no-code orchestration layer, combining document and biometric verification, data sources, and passive fraud signals. Onfido Atlas™ AI powers the platform's fully-automated, end-to-end identity verification. Developed in-house for over 10 years, it’s how Onfido ensures its analysis is fair, fast and accurate.
Recognized as a global leader in AI for identity verification and authentication, Onfido is backed by TPG Growth, Idinvest Partners, Crane Venture Partners, Salesforce Ventures, M12 (Microsoft) and others. They partner with over 1,000 businesses globally to help millions access services every week – from billion dollar institutions to hypergrowth start-ups.