Many finance teams still use the “old-school” expense management systemthat delivers poor user experience, resulting in a lack of employee interest and limited visibility into spending. While the employees have to collect all receipts and claim expenses manually, finance managers take a considerable amount of time to collate the receipts, reconcile errors in expense reports and chase employees for receipts and incomplete expenses.
In this changing world, slow processes that bog down the speed of the businesses can drag down your entire organization, demotivating employees. In this blog, we will share 6 ways in which you can modernize your expense processes and systems for today’s business environment. Read on!
Ways To Modernize Your Expense Management System
We know change is not easy to implement, but it is important to put efficiency at the forefront. If you want to gain more efficiency, you can start by maximizing the right technology and focusing on the following key elements to have a more streamlined process.
Have an expense management system that:
Gives real-time data on company spend – One of the challenges of managing expenses is that you can’t always get visibility as quick as you would like. And without knowing who is spending, and on what, it is impossible to manage travel and expense data effectively. Even though many businesses have automated some parts and must be using software for expense management – the data visibility part might be broken due to outdated technology. Therefore, it is essential to switch to an AI-enabled technology wherein you get full visibility on the spending activity and travel activity in real-time. This will help you forecast expenses, create budgets, and make decisions.
Has in-built, flexible T&E policy presented before booking – The time of having rigid travel and expense policies is gone. Policies need to be flexible in this rapidly changing world. Therefore, the expense management system you choose must have a policy adjustment feature that lets you change your policy as per business needs. Also, the policies should be presented to the users at the time of booking to prevent out-of-policy expenses. If there are any policy violations, the system should bring them to your notice without needing your input on a daily basis. Today, modern expense management softwarelets you bifurcate acceptable and unacceptable expenses so that you ensure employees are spending within policy.
Offers systematic approval flows – By using a modern expense management system that offers systematic and automated approval flows, you can view the expenses as they are filed and approved. This makes the entire expense reporting and approval process transparent to anyone who needs to be kept in the loop. You can also set automatic notifications and alerts for authorizers so that reimbursements or bookings are done on time.
Has a user-friendly mobile app – To fully benefit from modern software, it should have an expense app for employees. This allows paper receipts to be instantly converted into a digital form – resulting in an efficient and fast process. Also, when the employees have the option to claim expenses from any time, anywhere, and still be sure that they will be reimbursed, there’s a high probability that employees will use the tool/app. You can also automate the task of sending reminders to employees for incomplete expense reports or receipts, reducing your efforts and bandwidth spent on these tasks.
Offers easy reconciliation – With the right expense management system in place and accurate reporting, it won’t matter how many sources of expenses there are, as each expense will be easy to track and balance. The modern expense management system also includes easy reconciliation via virtual cards. The virtual cards have their unique transaction numbers. While the employees can use the card for offline purchases, finance teams can check the transactions and booking data without much effort.
Lets you integrate duty of care – Traveler safety is the number one priority for all businesses today. If your expense management system integrates your duty of care, the employees feel trusted and confident. And this leads to higher adoption rates for the system. For instance, if an employee needs to travel back home urgently while on a business trip, she should be able to book tickets and make payments easily via one integrated T&E management solution like ITILITE.