Does it take a lot of time for your employees to submit their travel expense reports manually? A Cloud-based expense management software can help to eradicate the tedious activities associated with the process. Plus, it is known to improve staff and financial productivity.
Read on to know how automation helps with travel and expense reports.
Essential Aspects That Discourage Travelers from Timely Submission of Expense Reports
Corporate travel is daunting. Travelers need to run across cities and, at times, even countries in order to close business deals. They have to handle customers as well as presentations within the deadline. Plus, they require saving corporate expense receipts to build reports.
a) Gathering and Sustaining Receipts is Arduous
All travelers fear the idea of collecting receipts physically at each point of expenditure. This dread continues when such workers are expected to handle several receipts throughout corporate travel. Such paper receipts are fragile and often get misplaced, tampered, or stolen. For this reason, staff avoids gathering receipts in the first place.
b) Conventional Reporting Process Takes A Lot Of Time
Once the travelers come back from their business travel, they must generate and submit an expense report for each corporate expense incurred on the trip. Often they are overwhelmed by the work of cataloging every receipt and separately reporting it. This effort needed to categorize, arrange, and upgrade every entry causes several workers to avoid reporting them at all.
c) Lacks Knowledge on Reporting Guidelines and Processes
Travelers may not know their responsibilities properly, as stated by the business travel policy. The guidelines can also be challenging to understand for them. Lack of details may lead to a lack of execution. It’s common among new staff who aren’t well-versed with business policies.
d) Need for a T&E Policy
It has been observed that 75% of companies have a traditional expense policy. Out of which 57% of employees understand the procedure and still need to improve. When an organization lacks a robust travel policy, expense reporting becomes risky. Without an advanced expense reporting template, travelers would not be able to generate and submit timely expense reports. Furthermore, it discourages travelers from remaining compliant.
What Happens When Travelers Don’t Submit Expense Reports on Time?
With several businesses catering to a broad customer base, corporate travel has become common. An expansion in business travel has led to more significant expenses for organizations. Such travel expenses are mandatory for businesses to meet their objectives.
But, when workers lack reporting such expenses on time, it becomes a blocker for other operations. The accounting and finance department finds it daunting to account for such costs accurately within the exact time frame. Moreover, they end up depending on the provisions based on assumptions as well as estimates. It leads to organizations making incorrect business decisions.
How Can Employees Submit Expense Reports
As many businesses are leveraging expense management solutions, a few still use manual expense processes. Does your organization fall under this category?
If yes, follow these steps to encourage travelers to submit expense reports timely.
Report Scanning Tool
There are multiple report scanning tools available in the market for switching physical receipts to electronic receipts. These applications are great for travelers as they remove gathering and storing physical receipts. Travelers no longer need to follow the mundane traditional receipt submission procedure. It works as a crucial motivator for workers to report travel expenses on time. Plus, the expense report process can also become fast for the finance department.
Policy Definition and Revision
Travelers must remain informed of the policy guidelines to make sure that they know what and how to report. New staff must be adequately instructed at the time of onboarding. A transparent expense policy will minimize the turnaround times at each stage of expense reporting.
A Complete Approach to Expense Reporting
Businesses are shifting towards implementing expense management software to address significant challenges around expense reporting.
The solution automates expense report generation and submission methods. Plus, it shortens reporting time extensively. It plays a pivotal role in encouraging travelers to submit the reports before the deadline. Here are the other advantages of using an expense solution to optimize expense reporting in the business.
Set Reminders for Report Submission
It’s critical to remind employees to submit travel reports. Expense automation solution provides the option to set up notifications and reminders to alert travelers about pending expenses. It helps keep workers on their toes and minimizes needless delays.
Value Compliant Behavior
When you are leveraging an expense reporting solution, you can quickly gain insights into staff spending patterns. Plus, you can check whether your travelers are staying compliant or not. Appreciate the workers by sending out newsletters and some other means of communication. It will help them feel rewarded and works the best for social proofing.
Employees must make timely submission of expense reports to get quick reimbursements. So, it is vital to take adequate measures to make reporting expenses as easy as possible.