Basware boosts transformation with key leadership hires

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Basware has named Anssi Ruokonen as its Director of AI Research and Enablement, and Barrett Schiwitz as its new Chief Information Officer (CIO).

Ruokonen will be tasked with advancing Basware’s AI technology and enhancing its product and service portfolio, while Schiwitz will spearhead the company’s digital transformation, aiming to improve customer experience.

According to McKinsey, generative AI has the potential to yield over $4.4tn across various industries. The company currently employs AI in its SmartPDF system, which attempts to streamline the conversion of machine-readable PDFs into e-invoices, boasting an accuracy of over 97%, eliminating outdated manual processes. 

Additionally, Basware collaborated with Microsoft last year to integrate ChatGPT into its customer support function, known as AskMary. ChatGPT was also used elsewhere in the payments landscape, utilised to predict interest rates by Sheffield Hallam University during research.

Ruokonen, previously Chief Product Officer at AI firm Fluentic, will spearhead Basware’s AI development efforts, directing the company’s strategy, research and approach to AI. His role involves implementing AI technology to refine the company’s product offerings and improving operational efficiency across the organisation.

Ruokonen commented: “Basware’s commitment to leveraging AI in transforming business operations is exciting and I’m fascinated by AI’s potential in revolutionising industries. Basware’s position enables us to leverage AI in every aspect of our business, directly translating to increased customer value.”

The new Director of AI Research and Enablement will be based in Helsinki, Finland, forming part of Basware’s Products, Cloud Engineering & Operations (PCE&O) function.

“By automating routine tasks, AI frees up human intellect to focus on creativity and strategic thinking. The democratisation of AI means not just easing existing work, but empowering every team member with new capabilities,” added Ruokonen.

Meanwhile, as CIO, Schiwitz will supervise Basware’s digital transformation initiatives, including the technological advancement and administration of internal digital transformation efforts, which aim to enhance customer service. 

This initiative will completely revamp the firm’s systems and data across all functions, beginning with customer facing areas. The project will be supported by investments in new systems and education to ensure staff deliver “more value to customers”.

Schiwitz stated: “Technology plays a central role in any successful business, from finance functions to sales and marketing, and Basware’s emphasis on innovation with products and services that make a difference stood out from the rest.”

Schiwitz boasts 30-years of experience in the technology sector as a transformation leader, implementer and software developer, previously working as SVP of Integration and Business Transformation at tech firm Snap One.  

“I’m excited to be a part of the team and leverage my experience to make an impact by leading the digital transformation strategy across the business to make technology work better for employees and customers,” concluded Schiwitz.