However, there are many ways that your existing expense reporting program and other practices can undermine the success of your business. Over time, even the most effective practices will become hindrances if they do not evolve with new business situations.
The Number One Warning Sign That You Need To Re-Evaluate Expense Reports Is This
Expense reports are among the most critical piece of financial documentation that you have. In fact, they are the “foundational” building blocks for a great deal of the reporting your company will do each quarter.
When you notice that your company is beginning to send out more people for business travel, it is definitely time to re-evaluate your company’s expense reporting approaches.
There are some special issues involved in travel expenses that are very complex:
— Currencies continuously change in value, even altering significantly from day to day.
— Different countries, provinces, states, and even regions may impose different taxes.
— Business travelers may have difficulty finding and keeping all the data they need.
— Travelers may simply be exhausted by their work abroad, making reporting mistakes.
Centralise Your Reporting Capabilities With Enterprise Solutions
There is another hidden factor that can make expense reports more problematic: Paper-based processes. Many enterprises start with paper-based financials and reporting because they are focused on operational enhancement.
However, travel signals that it is time to get everyone on the same page — by getting them off the page and onto a centralised, Web-based solution. By going on the Web, you can modernise your practices and usually condense your policies significantly.
A good piece of reporting software will have built-in fail safes that help ensure policies are followed. That means members of your enterprise will not have to be concerned with every detail, just reporting the facts — and any issues of concern can be red flagged quickly.
Expense reports are a critical but often overlooked piece of the financial puzzle. If your business is showing key signs of growth and maturity, then you should bring your company aboard with a software-based solution right away.
The best software solution is one that is so simple and intuitive that it will not take much training — or if it does, you can partner with the vendor for everything you need. That way, you can “roll out” policies and software at the same time, driving change in just one quarter.