Founded in 2016, Instawork is a flexible staffing solution for local, hourly professionals. Its digital marketplace connects businesses and qualified professionals across the U.S., filling a critical role in local economies.
Audits can often be an afterthought for startups attempting to survive the early stages. Despite this, Controller Steve Lamping arrived at the startup Instawork already well aware of the importance of being audit-ready. After working as an auditor for 10 years, Steve understood the financial responsibilities of any company that wants to go the long mile.
Getting the company to close on time and producing monthly financial reports were Steve’s first priorities at Instawork. Airbase helped him to do just that — and more. Read this case study to see how.
Steve has been exposed to most leading financial software throughout his auditing career. He explains to us why Airbase is different from the rest, as a platform that “thinks like an accountant” and allows you to focus on the processes and workflows that matter.
“Airbase is very focused. It tells you what to do and what matters. That’s a problem with some other tools — they flood the module with options, but that creates confusion. Airbase does a good job of controlling that and helping you where you need it.”
Cleaning up “sporadic” bill payment processes was another primary focus for Steve at Instawork. Airbase offers agile bill payments features which helped him clean up these processes. For example, being able to allocate bills and invoices to the appropriate pay period despite the actual date on the bill, and other customizable features.
On top of that functionality, Steve also credited the usability of Airbase to help move things along at Instawork.
“It’s super user-friendly. That’s probably why we’ve been so happy with the platform — we’re able to self-serve, figure things out, and not have to regularly ping support. My team can keep things moving.”
When it comes to close, and ultimately to an audit, details matter. Despite a legacy struggle with closing on time, accountants can’t afford to rush past any important information. Steve knows this all too well, and he’s seen firsthand how Airbase saves time while also catching every detail. Airbase allows you to match invoices to ledger entries while automatically processing and saving relevant data and documentation.
“Having the invoice right there — right alongside the journal entry and all coded into the platform — made it super easy, not just from an audit trail perspective, but also for bill pay approval. It cuts my approval time in half, it’s really great.”
Externally, communicating with vendors through the invoice inbox that Airbase offers also helped Instawork manage bill payments, supporting an effective close.
“The invoice inbox has been helpful in keeping things organized. It’s the starting point of our workflow and it’s nice to know what’s there at a glance. It avoids a huge backlog when I can go straight in and see that bills are being moved along quickly.”
The OCR technology Airbase provides, which automatically processes invoice details and expedites bill payments processes, was also a contributing factor in cutting Instawork’s close in half and their improved invoice management. “It reads the correct amount, the date, and the due date very consistently and it’s been working out really well.”
Having had experience with other leading corporate card solutions that were restrictive, Steve was interested in a solution that allowed him to swap card owners without having to reissue new cards every time. Airbase allowed Steve to switch owners without closing and re-opening cards. This meant he didn’t lose card services that he was paying for and also saved time.
“One of the features I really like about Airbase — and we couldn’t do this on any other platform — is how easy it is to transfer cards from one person to another, for example, a virtual card.”
As an added bonus, Steve also explained that he was able to move all his cards from his previous provider to Airbase without issue.
Micro-managing reimbursements is no longer a concern for Instawork’s payroll manager, who, thanks to Airbase and the in-depth NetSuite integration it offers, can now focus strictly on payroll while enjoying an easy review of reimbursements.
“It’s a super smooth integration with NetSuite reimbursements. I measure that success off of how few complaints we get from employees.”
Employees at Instawork find it easy to request reimbursements while management can relax knowing that proper approval workflows are in place. Steve tells us, “The general ease-of-use has been huge for everyone. To get nearly 300 employees onto a reimbursement process and have it go smoothly is a big deal.” When he arrived at Instawork, Steve wanted to prioritize creating monthly financial reports. Airbase has supported Steve in achieving that goal, with real-time reporting that has myriad uses.
“Using Airbase for our budget, to retrieve actual data points and pull reports based on vendor, has been great. It’s a one-stop-shop for not only audits but also operations.”
Ultimately, Steve arrived at Instawork knowing what he wanted to do, what various solutions could do, and what he had to do to meet audit obligations. After trying multiple single-point solutions, Steve met his goals in one consolidated platform with Airbase.
The benefits of a consolidated spend management platform were felt across the board at Instawork, improving card, reporting, and bill payments operations. Steve saw his pain points resolved and cut his closing time in half. He can now focus on the things that matter while knowing the bill payments, reimbursements, and all non-payroll spending are under control.
“We are very happy with the product and want to keep growing with you guys. Airbase has helped us be as efficient as we possibly can be in our process.”