Both large and small companies face the constant task of balancing expenditures and growth. This is not only vital to managing the overall budget, but it is also necessary to monitor expense reports in order to ensure that the charges are valid business expenditures. One of the most frequent places that corporate fraud becomes apparent is when these costs are not directly scrutinized before approval, since both financial officers, accountants, and the employees in question are held to some form of accountability for the infraction.
A significant issue that is faced with travel expenses is the fact that direct monitoring of how funds are allocated is not possible when employees are on work excursions. The use of improper funds for personal gains has become a prominent trend, as evidenced in the recent charges against Messrs. Harb and Brazeau. The accusations of fraud that are launched against the ex-senator and senator include claiming a primary residence as a travel and secondary living expense. However, the trail of evidence on expense reports was illuminated through third party audits.
Preserving The Efficiency Of Process
Discrepancies with expense reports do bring entire institutions under scrutiny. Assumptions are made that if fraud is uncovered in one area, then it is also likely to be discovered in other departments. For a business that is just beginning to see growth, this prospect creates a devastating reputation for the brand and also contributes to low employee morale. Avoiding the possibility of a fraud accusation becomes just as important as balancing the budget, but it also ensures that company funds truly are being used for the benefit of the company.
A large problem with travel expenses is that they get approved after the expenditure has been made. In cases where a company account or charge card are used to facilitate employee travel, discrepancies in expense reports also represent a time lapse, over which time the reputation damage to a business has already been done. For this reason, having the means to monitor these costs and reimbursement claims as they happen also gives the accounting department the chance to catch issues more quickly.
The use of software applications for expense reports has greatly facilitated this ability to remain in control of the use of company funds. By linking spending to real time reporting, financial officers and even small business owners find that they have a clearer picture of how resources are being used and where the most prevalent points of spending occur. This information becomes integral, not only to seeing the business grow fiscally, but also as a respected brand.