Every company with traveling employees has their own basic set of guidelines and procedures where their travel expenses are concerned. And while it’s important that you stick to those rules, it’s also important that you give yourself all of the tools possible to get the best results from your expense management process. Today, managing expenses with the help of a good software program is a must for any business. These programs offer tools that can help you stay compliant, avoid mistakes, and cut down on the hassle associated with expense management while boosting your bottom line.
When most people begin investigating a program to help with managing expenses, they look into the different features offered by the program. It’s very true that things like receipt imaging and credit card integration are great tools to find in a program, but it’s all too common for company leaders to overlook one of the more important standard features offered by nearly any good program – data reporting.
Data reporting is just what it sounds like. It’s a basic feature that allows you to call up data from a specific period of time and review it. You could look at expense information from a single trip, from an entire quarter, or even an entire year. Plus, with the best programs you can also get more specific with the information – breaking it down on an individual basis, a by-department basis, and more.
As a result, you can use these data reports to take a very close look at the way your employees are spending when on a business trip and on the kind of profit return they’re providing you with. The information you gain could help you in numerous ways. Consider the following things you could use the data to determine:
- Which employees are the most frugal
- Which employees are spending far more than others – potentially defrauding your company
- Departments that are overspending based on others
- The most successful business trips in a given year based on expense to return ratio
You can then take the info to make adjustments to the way you run your business. You might offer incentives or rewards to those strong performers, adjust accepted expenses, and much more. In short, these data reports allow you to determine where you can make changes when managing expenses and help you develop strategies and policies that can take your business into the future.