Poorly managed expense reports can quickly become cumbersome and time-consuming. How can you establish a clearer management policy that leads to faster reimbursement? Discover the tips to follow!
When employees incur personal expenses in the course of their work, they expect to be rapidly reimbursed. This is especially true if the amounts involved are significant. A business trip that includes several nights in a hotel, meals, and train or plane tickets can quickly strain their budget.
The company also has a vested interest in reimbursing expense reports as quickly as possible. If not, the motivation and trust of its teams will inevitably be affected. Significant delays could even lead to potentially serious litigation.
Discover our four tips to ensure that employee expense reports are reimbursed faster and without error. This will guarantee a climate of trust within your company.
1. Encourage employees to submit expense reports on time
Caught up in their agendas, or simply out of absent-mindedness, employees have a tendency to submit their expense reports late. But the earlier they submit them, the faster they will be reimbursed. Make sure you encourage your employees to file their expenses, for their own sake!
For example, set a deadline for submitting expense reports to encourage your employees to act quickly. If you opt for this solution, make sure you communicate the benefits. Explain why this choice will be beneficial for everyone and how it will lead to faster reimbursement of the expenses incurred. Act step by step, with transparency and instruction. The changes will be better understood and more readily accepted.
If expense reports are reimbursed late, it may also be because they are simply poorly prepared. This often happens when employees forget to attach their receipts or because expense reports frequently contain VAT errors.
To save time for all of your employees, and your accounting department in particular, review your expense reports and determine how you can improve them. At the same time, establish a clearer and more transparent expense reimbursement policy. For example, start by listing the different types of expenses reimbursed by the company, from transport, to accommodation, to meals, to other expenses such as equipment purchases. For all of these items, set a maximum spending limit to help maintain your cash flow. For example, offer an allowance per hotel or per meal. You could also partner with a cab company or a hotel chain in order to benefit from negotiated rates.
Another good idea is to opt for technical tools that simplify your teams’ tasks, such as the N2F expense report management application.
3. Use automation to generate time-savings for your accounting department
Improving expense reports and reviewing their processing system can improve the management of these documents and the related payments. However, it is important that this does not create a bottleneck in the accounting department, which can quickly become overwhelmed.
N2F provides companies with concrete answers to prevent these bottlenecks:
- Automating control. Employees simply use their smartphone to take a picture of their expense report. The document is then transmitted directly to the accounting department and to other departments if necessary. You can use the N2F application’s smart scan to instantly retrieve all the data needed to record expenses, such as amounts, currencies, dates or even VAT rates.
- Real-time transmission of documents. Expense reports and the elements they contain are submitted in real time. The accounting teams receive this information progressively as it is submitted. This way, there is no bottleneck in the accounting department during critical periods such as month ends.
4. Implementing effective validation processes
The validation and approval process for each employee expense report is a crucial step.
For the accounting teams, who very often still use Excel files, this is a potentially time-consuming task. They have to check each expense, potential omissions, compliance with budgets, etc. The risks of errors and lost documents are significant.
Moving to the paperless management of expense reports can save you precious time and give your company a head start.
If you use expense report management software like N2F, data such as amounts, currencies, and dates are automatically recovered. These data then go through an operational and administrative verification process before being validated.
Intuitive and powerful, N2F’s management software can be used to customize the various approval steps and will adapt to your organization’s specific needs. Expense reports are sent directly to the right people. Accounting entry files and SEPA transfers to reimburse employees are generated automatically. The loop is closed!
Reimburse your teams’ expense reports more quickly with the N2F application. Ergonomic and customizable, the solution provides a completely paperless process for managing employee expense reports and offers a wide range of features. Save time for your employees, optimize your budget, and focus on performance!