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From networking and conferences to franchising and new construction, business travel is a vital component of operations for companies across all industries. Unfortunately, expense management and reimbursements for traveling employees is one of the most time-consuming and repetitive manual business processes that companies face. And when a whopping 73% of invoices are still received in paper or e-mail form, there are many opportunities to make outdated processes more efficient.

That’s where automation comes in. Automating these tasks can make it easier and more lucrative to track expenses and provide reimbursement promptly. With SenSaaS! Travel and Expense management solution, businesses can easily capture, submit, verify, approve, analyze and process expense reports payments to an ERP system. Plus, user-friendly, mobile-based tools allow employees to capture and upload proof of their expenses anytime, from anywhere.

To ensure that you’re up-to-date with the latest tools and techniques in automating such processes efficiently, here are the 5 best practices for implementing and managing travel & expense.

 

Mobile Technology: Simplify Approvals From Anywhere

First and foremost, a travel and expense solution in the modern age should be mobile friendly. Asking employees to lug their laptops to dinner simply isn’t accessible. And, lacking a mobile-friendly solution could lead to lapses and errors in reimbursements. Mobility also makes it easy to manage receipts.

Paper receipts can be recorded with a quick photo, and those which come by email can be attached with a screenshot. Mobile-friendly solutions should also be accessible 24/7. Traveling and transportation can mean employees need to log expenses late at night — especially when traveling to drastically different time zones. A mobile-friendly solution that’s always on ensures that records and approvals stay on target.

User-Friendly Interface: Easy Expense Recording

In addition to a mobile-friendly tool, it’s equally as important that the solution offers a seamless customer experience. If your users (employees) aren’t able to understand the solution, it won’t be used effectively. Moreover, confusion about how a tool is used, or what can be recorded, can lead to errors and delays in processing. Effective expense management automation all begins with an expense being recorded correctly.

Therefore, it should be easy for the employee to take a photo of their receipt and upload it into the expense management system. Synchronizing and submitting information for approval does require an internet connection, however, which ensures that reports are sent and received safely and efficiently.

Providing employees with a list of categories around expenses can also make it easier for managers to process and approve expenses. Since an internet connection isn’t required for employees to create reports, they’ll be more inclined to record their expenses as they happen.

With a list of categories to choose from, employees will better understand what expenses can be reimbursed, thereby increasing travel policy compliance.

Controlled Permissions: Setting Multi-Tier Approvals

Many businesses have multiple people traveling at any given time, often to different places. With this in mind, approving all of these expenses in real-time can be a challenge. That’s why a multi-tier approval system is so important. Multi-tier approvers can access and approve expenses from anywhere, but only if they’re approved to do so. This makes the process more efficient without sacrificing security over expenses.

Another benefit of a multi-tiered approval system is that it’s easier to assign stakeholders and set permissions. These permissions help define the roles and responsibilities of each individual. With a custom task sheet tailored to their specific role, each individual gain a clear picture regarding what they need to do, and when.

Rather than sifting through emails, spreadsheets and physical documents, approvers can view all expense data in a single location. This improves accuracy in expense reports and reduces instances of expense fraud.

Integration of T&E with Your ERP

When keeping track of T&E across multiple employees, there’s no room for error. And, data is really only valuable when it’s properly captured and analyzed according to a clear goal. Fortunately, an expense management tool can help. A document automation tool that can be integrated with existing systems helps create a seamless digital experience across all fronts.

Seamless Integration of Travel and Expense transactions into an ERP has many benefits. For one, the ability to see two sets of data at once creates a greater level of visibility. This helps enterprises gain actionable insights and identify new opportunities for growth and expansion.

Another benefit of integrating payment control with your ERP is that it provides employees with an engaging experience.

Insight Dashboard: Track Trends, KPI’s and ROI

Do you know the average price that your employees spend on hotels during business trips? How about the price of taxis, food and entertaining clients? Having insight into these data points is crucial for understanding the ROI of your business travel efforts. And with a travel and expense solution that automates these processes for you, you can gain access to short and long term reporting on your bottom line.

The SenSaaS! Travel & Expense management solution is equipped with an accessible dashboard to more properly identify trends and errors while providing enhanced insight and mitigating duplicate payments or non‑corporate approved transactions.

Companies that employ travel and expense management (TEM) solutions have access to key metrics and reporting data. This makes it easier to analyze spending at various levels, including employees, departments, and suppliers. This information can also be analyzed to eliminate wasteful expenditure through control measures and regular audits. Both frugal and problem users can be identified with ease, ensuring that approvers and auditors are focusing their attention on the right individuals or departments.

TEM consolidates disparate data from multiple sources into one user-friendly platform, yielding compound cost savings and large-scale insights. With a comprehensive view of previously unavailable data, companies have greater control over the inefficiencies and processes in travel and expenses.

If you have any questions regarding the automation of your Travel & Expense management, do not hesitate to contact INTEGRIM’s automation solutions experts today. An experienced member of our team will gladly answer all of your questions.