Let's be clear, automating your T&E spend process is the best thing you could do for your business. Why? A clear cost saver in terms of time and money, it can both maximise your returns and minimise your 'no added value' spend. Because manually filing, reconciling and reimbursing travel and expense claims can be a time consuming process. Extracting data for analysis is a struggle to say the least, unless of course you're a whizz in Excel formulas. And offsetting expense reports against business targets can be hit-and-miss without the right insights. Finally, you want your employees to feel invested and empowered, rather than struggling to understand your company's policies.
You can automate compliance at expense entry to prevent or flag non-compliant claims. You can set a tolerance level which works for both your financial policy and your high potential employees, reducing aggravation.
Automation acts on seven levers:
Using an expense tool that is tailored to your needs will ensure that your travel planning is both more efficient and more profitable. For example, integrating travel pre-approval options empowers employees to take advantage of that special Eurostar offer or flight deal as it comes up.
Reports offer actionable insights and can, for example, show what percentages of the overall T&E budget goes to flights, overnight stays or food and beverages. This ensures you can budget more accurately and allocate funds where they are needed most.
Finally, when team members are able to compare their department’s or personal expenses with others in the company, a deeper level of awareness is created. And the more involved your employees feel, the more invested they become in making the most out of that expensive flight to Switzerland.
Supported by clear policies, a good TEM tool streamlines your processes and removes the burden on your business, both on a financial and an operational level.
Users can log their expenses by smartphone, uploading receipts into a mobile app as they go. This frees up valuable time which can be spent on work with added value for the company. It also means less time spent fighting an inefficient process, making for a happier user. And a happy user = a productive user.
Approvers can approve requests as they come in, no longer required to manually check every line as legal and policy compliance are integrated. OCR tools flag non-compliant items for further review, letting the approver spend time on more important matters. And again, less time spent on expenses means more time spent doing their job.
Finally, for controllers this means a steadier and more compliant flow of expenses with less bottlenecks and faster reimbursement times. OCR expense logging and flagging of non-compliant items decreases the time spent by controllers processing expenses by up to 90%.