An expense account can often be a useful way of dealing with employees who regularly need to go on trips, speak with clients, customers, or subcontractors, and otherwise spend company money on company time while far away from company property. Setting up an expense account ahead of time means your employee won’t have to worry about spending his or her own money and maybe getting it back afterwards, a situation which can lead to poor morale at the very least.
However, an expense account comes with the temptation to use every cent of it one way or another, much like the common belief that you need to spend your entire budget or risk seeing it cut for the next quarter. Whether or not that’s true often depends on the company, but you can at least keep the people with expense accounts honest with the proper utilization of expense report software.
Modern expense report software is more than just a way to keep track of expense accounts and per-diem allowances, it’s also a way to update the home office in real time with an employee’s payouts and a way for the home office to answer questions about whether a given expense is covered or not. The expense report software can also automate certain functions like determining whether the account will pay for certain costs and what sort of percentage or flat rate applies.
You can even customize the software for each person using it based on what kind of budget they have to work with. For instance, a junior salesperson sent out to scare up a few new leads in a rural part of the country would need plenty of money available for gas and the occasional car repair and maintenance, but food and lodging expenses would be reasonably cheap.
On the other hand, a senior salesperson looking to land a major contract with a big company or renew an existing relationship would need a bigger budget for the higher prices of the city, a discretionary fund for impressing the company representatives, plus a little something extra as a perk of seniority.
Modern expense report software makes it possible to organize all this faster than ever before, and it allows your employees to keep track of their expenses even as they pay them out thanks to mobile communication. For its part, the home office can provide instant feedback to clear up any confusion or mistakes, and the whole process can become much less of a hassle than it would be without this new technology.