Onit, the Houston company that provides enterprise workflow products for corporations and corporate legal departments, is today introducing InvoiceAI, an artificial intelligence product for first-pass invoice review.

With today’s debut, Onit is making the product available to existing corporate legal customers on a select basis. It will release the product for general availability in the third quarter of this year.

Versions of InvoiceAI will be available for both Onit and SimpleLegal, the legal operations platform that Onit acquired in 2019.

InvoiceAI represents the fourth AI offering from Onit in seven months. In November, the company introduced its AI-based platform Precedent, for automating legal and business processes, and two AI products for contract lifecycle management, ReviewAI and ExtractAI.

These product launches followed Onit’s acquisition last November of McCarthyFinch, provider of a suite of AI-driven contract management software, followed a month later by its acquisition of AXDRAFT, developer of contract automation software.

It acquired SimpleLegal in May 2019, four months after private equity firm K1 Investment Management invested $200 million in the company.

Uncovering Errors

Even though Onit is still refining the product, CEO Eric Elfman and Vice President of Products Mary Fuzat told me that it is already producing impressive results.

In tests with a select group of Fortune 100 customers, InvoiceAI uncovered an average of 6-11% of unactioned errors for invoices submitted during 2020. The tested datasets were of invoices the customers had already processed, which means that the savings found by InvoiceAI exceeded what the customers’ standard review had already found.

InvoiceAI analyzes historical invoices to train its AI models, and continuously learns from new invoices, to identify charges that are potentially noncompliant with a company’s billing guidelines and spend management best practices.

The company says that its machine learning models can find issues such as improperly billed administrative tasks or travel time, vague or insufficient details, block billing, improper coding of invoices, and work being done by the wrong staff class, all of which can be difficult for traditional billing rules to uncover.

As a result, inhouse attorneys can quickly review invoices, legal operations can identify noncompliant billing guidelines and identify early savings, and general counsel can gain greater visibility into law firm performance and legal spend metrics, Onit says.

The information can also be used to guide outside counsel on the customer’s billing expectations.

All About Transparency

InvoiceAI will compete against other AI invoice review products on the market such as Brightflag and LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer from Wolters Kluwer.

But in developing InvoiceAI, Elfman said, he did not want to simply play “me too” and emulate existing products, but rather to focus on how to develop a product that would benefit Onit’s customers by providing greater transparency into legal invoicing.

“At the end of the day, it’s all about improving transparency,” Elfman said.

“It transforms the entire invoice lifecycle, lowering friction and aligning law firms and corporations on expectations and performance.”

Free Invoice Analysis for Customers

To demonstrate the potential value of InvoiceAI, Onit is offering current Onit and SimpleLegal customers a free analysis of 90 days of their historical billing data.

Analyses conducted so far have revealed many thousands of dollars in billing errors for customers, Elfman said. “If you look back across a quarter or a year, those invoices can add up to several hundred thousand dollars.”

Even given that 2020 was a year in which COVID-19 severely restricted travel, InvoiceAI has identified an average of six figures of savings in travel-related billed time and expenses submitted to customers quarterly, he said.

When the product is released for general availability in the fall, it will still be just the tip of the iceberg of AI innovations Onit has planned, Elfman said. “Expect more AI innovation from us this year.”

Law departments and insurance companies that are not current customers can learn more about InvoiceAI by emailing info@onit.com.

Featured image by rupixen.com via Unsplash.

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Photo of Bob Ambrogi Bob Ambrogi

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.