Embracing an Expense Management solution in the digital era achieves an agile paperless environment that will create value by ensuring that purchasing and expense processes are always compliant with corporate policy.
Achieving consistency is all about having an auditable, repeatable process with controls being in place pre-trip and per line item, from the time that an employee submits a request through to those final approvals post trip, a task that has not been so easy to achieve before today’s digital age. Processes within the application allow for the practical capture of expense receipts on a mobile phones camera for onward submissions and benefits staff from missing out on valid claims through an easier more inclusive process.
Additionally some personnel may be authorised to spend money on trade purchases and these can be handled within the same process and if needed detailed exception rule handling can be put into place by management as required for these types of activities.
Any employee process starts with pre-approval with full budget visibility that takes into account approved but non consumed expenditure at any point in time. Post trip approvals are done with visibility of the original authorisation to keep all transactions compliant with company policy. The ability to attach review comments per line item @anystage of the process provides deeper contextual enrichment for explanatory purposes.
Routing rules and multi-level approvals, together with full budget visibility, facilitates managers and provides both an agile and controlled review environment with appropriate commentary back to employees. Which employees have not submitted this month or are missing receipts and which ones when ranked are consistent offenders of policy is now manageable to tighten control. Holistic oversight also provides opportunity for looking more easily for fraudulent or unusual data outliers that may be a mistake or have a more sinister underlying purpose. Notifications to wearables is also supported.
Pre-trip expense approvals or expense claims that are late both have to be managed. Any late approvals pre-trip indicates an individual not executing a request in a timely manner, meaning that for some types of expenses like flights and hotels that costs of execution are much higher than they should be. Manage this and costs are saved.
Late approvals can be auto managed, and escalated with workflows, noting that tight process management is particularly useful for projects. Here timely access to expenses at a “project level” gives meaningful actionable insights for required execution of corrective actions sooner rather than later.
Compliant processes ensure that managers, when granting approvals @anywhere, are doing so in full visibility of budget availability, including those harder to track approved but not yet consumed items, and where appropriate ensuring that those required multi-level approval flows for higher value items are done in a timely manner with the appropriate level of staff.
In some businesses expenses incurred can be recharged to specific projects with or without a mark-up. This requires that project information is recorded efficiently and in a timely manner, and as part of the process, rather than being an afterthought.
Per diems or a single one off corporate trip allowance can also be handled. All can be processed with the auto handling of underlying costs centres and account codes for finance, including FX handling.
Solutions of this type can be implemented as an isolated solution or be fully integrated with your financial and HR systems.
All processes are fully auditable at every level from the start to the end with notifications and workflows keeping them agile. Processes can also be extended to overseas staff and / or management thereby providing easier and deeper levels of oversight for smaller operations than previously possible.
Managing and removing late Expense Claim Submission increases timely insights where inadvertently multiple people on the same trip are submitting some form of duplicate expense.
Some organisations have higher volumes of trips than others and being able to report on route taken, airlines used, and number of trips per month or in time aggregates allows central procurement to seek better deals based on factual information. This can also be taken to the next level of extracting more value when different subsidiaries are sending staff to a single overseas location but often utilising different hotel groups that are not being included in procurement based discussions.
Process analytics including notifications provides insights at every level through tables, tags and graphs. It allows for the employee to manage their individual expenses and submissions through to receipt of payment, and for managers to have oversight of their staff for the same information, either collectively, by sub group or in total for detailed visibility purposes.
Passcode, biometric options and data encryptions @rest @transit ensures data security throughout the process for desktop and mobile devices. Lost devices can be managed with optional mobile device management solutions that come with data deletion capability on device loss thereby providing additional safety in operations for mobile devices.
In conclusion embracing digital processes for Expense Management empowers staff and management to have full visibility into the expenses process, whilst maintaining full budget visibility and compliance at multiple levels