About the client
Péntech is a Hungarian IT startup developing business solutions for keeping financial liquidity and establishing reliable B2B partnerships. Their main product is a digital invoice factoring application that enables companies to collect the payment in advance, even months before the due date. Entrepreneurs can also use two secondary products: one that shortens the process of applying for a bank loan to submitting one online request, and a second, that provides insights about the potential business partner’s financial condition that couldn’t be caught on the website or during a conversation.
The startup was founded in November 2019 and now consists of 14 people, including software engineers, risk analysts, sales representatives, marketing specialists, and lawyers. Their cooperation with FOTC began in the field of Google Workspace, and, as the IT products were growing, it has extended to Google Cloud Platform.
It’s the typical startup’s situation – the team dreams big but must stay aware of the reality. Time, money, and people’s energy are limited, so the key is to invest them right. To stay afloat, Péntech needs to use ready-made tools that accelerate the development speed, ensure easy digital documents management, and support remote communication – both internal and external.
I’m happy we’ve decided to use GCP and Google Workspace. The console is transparent and intuitive, the network fast and efficient, scaling and infrastructure maintenance automated. Google Cloud has a nice community with users sharing their experience, where we can easily find solutions to any issue.
Péntech has been using Google Cloud solutions from day zero. Both GCP cloud services, and Google Workspace office productivity apps suite help them roll out new features fast, centralize company documents, and keep smooth communication.
Google Cloud ecosystem easier to use than competitive solutions
The main administrator at Péntech has experience in using both GCP and Azure cloud services. He also had an opportunity to work with both productivity suites – Google Workspace and Microsoft 365. For him, Google proved to be more user-friendly and logically organized. For that reason, even when Microsoft approached Péntech with a special offer for startups, they decided to stay in the Google Cloud environment.
As soon as I looked into the documentation and remembered how Azure and Microsoft 365 works, I realized small things that are a bit off – not where they should be, not logically organized. I could get used to it, but I’m happy I don’t have to.
Rapid development without bothering about the underlying infrastructure
All three developed applications are cloud-native. They are designed to take full advantage of the cloud managed services, scalability and automation possibilities.
Right now, for a three-person IT team, serverless services are a great support. Software engineers already create source code and run quality assurance tests. They can delegate the infrastructure maintenance to Google with the App Engine platform and organize code better thanks to Cloud Functions connected with Pub/Sub.
App Engine makes it easy to version – to deploy quickly and have the ability to roll back in case we find a bug in the production environment. Furthermore, we don’t have to deal with scaling because Google does the job.
Firebase solutions give them great flexibility too. Firebase Hosting is a fast and reliable web content hosting that can be easily paired with App Engine, while Firebase Authentication provides a ready-made service for securely saving users’ data in the cloud, checking their identity, and logging in with one click on any device.
What speeds up the factoring operations, relieves employees of manual work, and increases users’ experience is Vision API – a pre-trained artificial intelligence model able to read and understand written content (e.g., from PDF or JPG files). One of the main functionalities of the Péntech application is the automatic collection of information from the uploaded invoice. That eliminates the need for filling forms manually and accelerates the transferring of payment to the user.
Now we have a hybrid solution. We use Vision API to read the documents, and then our specialists double-check them, but eventually, in a few months, it will be run fully by AI. This will significantly speed up and simplify the factoring process. Imagine that – you put an invoice into the system and receive the indicated amount in several seconds.
Electronic file circulation on Drive
Thanks to using all the Google file editor apps from the beginning, Péntech employees can work remotely without worrying about physical paperwork. Contracts and legal documents written by an in-house lawyer are safely stored on Google Drive and shared only with employees and relevant clients. Thanks to synchronization with a local file system, the most important documents are also available offline, so the lack of internet connection does not affect productivity.
We use every app from the Google Workspace package, but I think what is really valuable is Drive because it connects all of it. We can set up different settings for sharing, and we can sync with a local file system – it just works.
Risk assessment with the help of Google Sheets
At Péntech, Google apps are used for every office-related task, but no one is harnessing the power of those tools more often than the risk assessment team. Google Sheets is their go-to app for conducting all the advanced financial calculations and generating reports for clients. Thanks to the fact that online spreadsheets store revision history, many people can edit one file at the same time without the risk of losing progress.
Remote communication in Meet
Video calls in Google Meet are the main channel of synchronous communication. Employees can quickly create a meeting room in Gmail, Calendar, or directly in the Google Meet app and invite others by sending a link over Slack.
Ongoing support and streamlined billing with FOTC
Péntech benefits from FOTC’s assistance each time they have any questions about using Google Cloud Platform and Google Workspace services. Another perk of working with a Google Cloud Partner is straightforward billing in one place, with discounts, and in the local currency.
Issues with Google Cloud products happen hardly ever, but if there’s a case, we get an answer from FOTC in about 10 minutes. It’s a really good relationship.
Thanks to the founders’ and team’s understanding of the B2B market, their business and technical knowledge, and skills to leverage cloud solutions, Péntech already supports customers in Hungary and is expanding into other European countries. They will soon enter the Polish, Czech and Slovak markets.