Did you know cloud-based systems can help reduce up to 47% of your IT costs?
As per a study, processing one expense report manually can cost $58 on average. So, if you think you can control your spending with a spreadsheet, you might end losing even more money.
Looking for Expense Management Software? Check out SoftwareSuggest’s list of the best Expense Management Software solutions.
The key to maximizing efficiency and saving both time and money is automation. This is where a cloud-based travel and expense management software enters the picture.
From streamlining expense reporting to accelerating reimbursement, expense management software offers tons of benefits.
Here are some reasons why you should switch to cloud-based systems when it comes to travel and expense management.
1. Eliminates Manual Errors
19% of expense reports contain errors, and it takes 18 minutes on average to correct each one.
Well, this is not surprising. When multiple employees manually add their expense claims to the same sheet, it is bound to make the process error-prone. Moreover, one incorrect formula can affect multiple spreadsheets, and fixing that can become a huge task.
However, cloud-based expense management systems come with robust features like receipt scanning and provide direct integration with corporate credit/prepaid cards. This, in turn, can help you extract data from scanned receipts and calculate expenses automatically.
At the same time, corporate credit and prepaid cards are an important part of business travel. When you connect them to an expense management system, card transactions are fetched automatically and converted into expenses.
Getting the right expense management solutions analyze all your spending added during a date range and convert them into a report. Post that, they submit them to the approver. Thus, eliminating the need for any information to be entered manually.
2. Saves Time and Money
In many organizations, employees enter their expense claims in spreadsheets and then mail them to their managers and the finance team. After that, approvers spend a lot of time reviewing each expense and passing the spreadsheet from one approver to another.
The time spent reviewing and approving expense reports can lead to delayed reimbursements. So, to avoid these limitations, organizations are moving towards online expense reporting software.
Furthermore, you can reduce the cost of processing a report by approximately 63% with an expense management solution. These applications are fully automated and help save time for all stakeholders.
Do you frequently travel with your team?
Well, with an expense management solution, you need not safeguard your travel receipts till you get back. All you need to do is use an expense tracking tool to capture a picture of the receipt and create an expense right away.
Once you gather all your expenses, the line managers and your finance team can quickly process approvals and reimbursements.
3. Improved Policy Compliance
Do you find it tough to manage compliance-related issues?
Well, it is next to impossible to enforce expense policies effectively and ensure compliance using spreadsheets. The reason? They have not been designed to detect violations or limits for an entity.
Moreover, your good old spreadsheets fail when it comes to tracking compliance in the following areas:
- Per diems
- Mileage expenses
- Travel and booking requirements
Manual expense processing can lead to out-of-policy expenses being overlooked and employees getting reimbursed despite policy violations. However, with an online expense management system in place, you can configure the software as per your firm’s existing policies.
This will help you prevent the misuse of funds and boost policy compliance. If different departments or projects in your company, you can easily enforce different policies for each one of them.
Furthermore, an expense management software will help you control spends by notifying submitters of expense limits. Interestingly, it also enables you to detect out-of-policy expense claims and get notified of policy violations as they happen.
4. Advanced Fraud Detection and Prevention
Manual expense reporting is an invitation to expense theft. For crafty employees, the low security associated with spreadsheets makes it easy to alter data after gaining expense approval.
Detecting such changes is difficult and time-consuming. Moreover, validating such expenses is another challenge. Some employees could submit the same receipt twice or round up their expenses to a higher amount. These violations are likely to slip through and end up getting reimbursed.
So, what can be done to solve these issues?
All you need to do is automate expense reporting. Expense management solutions can detect fraudulent expenses by identifying out-of-policy expense claims and duplicate receipts.
Most of the expense systems also offer GPS system-supported mileage tracking. Thus, helping you get accurate mileage calculations instead of leaving you at your employees’ discretion.
5. Third-Party Integrations
Spreadsheets cannot integrate with any other system, even remotely. This is undesirable as expense data is used on back-office operations like sales, budgeting, accounting, and payroll.
If you need to use this data, your finance team would need to manually format and import data into multiple business systems.
Additionally, you will need to update any modifications or additions made to an expense claim across all systems. Thus, it gets difficult to ensure if the information you are using is up to date and correct.
To mitigate these issues, cloud-based expense management applications offer integration with a wide variety of applications. This, in turn, enables expense data to flow through the whole finance function.
For instance, you choose to integrate the expense and accounting software. So, as soon as an expense is reported and approved in the expense management system, it will automatically get updated in the accounting system.
Also, integrating your expense management software with other systems provides you with advanced insights with the least spent in entering data.
6. Enhanced Security
Spreadsheets offer limited data storage and backup facilities which can turn into major security for businesses. While spreadsheets provide password- protection for worksheets and workbooks, it is very easy to meddle with them.
At the same time, it is difficult to prevent an employee with access to confidential data from overwriting or copying the data. However, the level of security offered by a cloud expense management software is way better when compared to spreadsheets.
Cloud security includes articulated policies, controls, procedures, controls, and technology that work together to protect infrastructure and data.
These measures help you protect data, drive compliance, and set authentication rules for users and devices.
Using spreadsheets to handle business expenses is not safe or efficient. Manual expense processing can be a pain for business travelers and finance teams alike.
Moreover, they can cost a bomb in the short and long term. Go ahead and embrace enhanced efficiency with a cloud- based expense management solution!