Lately there have been several news reports in which the lack of travel and expense policies have gone wrong. Former Speaker Bronwyn Bishop was forced to resign in August after a three-week-long political scandal occurred after she charged taxpayers for a $5,277 helicopter ride to a Liberal fundraiser in 2014. More recently, Councilman Sammy Chavira billed taxpayers more than $24,000 for 13 out-of-state trips; the colleagues on the Glendale City Council have admitted this week to want to strengthen the city’s travel policy following this report on travel expenses.
So why do some companies decide to not implement a T&E policy? Many argue the cost and time; One explanation by Mayor Jerry Weiers suggests that one option to tighten the travel policy would require more use of personal cards, and having to provide all and any information to be reimbursed, making the process more time-consuming and difficult.
However, when companies just “go with their gut” or decide not to implement a travel and expense policy, the results can be disastrous. Because older policies such as using paper receipts are outdated, automated expense management systems such as Apptricity Travel and Expense are used to provide better efficiency and cost savings.
To prevent such incidents from happening, here are 5 reasons why it is important to ensure you have a Travel and Expense Policy:
- Be able to know what your employees are spending: If you set parameters for what employees can and cannot spend, it is easy to track expenses with a good expense management solution. This means having parameters for airfare, hotel, food and drink, and other transportation expenses.
- Significant expense reductions: when the policy is practiced, unnecessary spending is reduced and the company is able to account for important expenses for future use. Not only is this more ethical, but it saves for legal issues in the future when it comes to tax purposes.
- Help keep employees organized and happy: most employees probably dread going through paper receipts and relying on methods of sorting paper work. By using an automated expense system, these older processes are no longer needed and employees can save time and will be more inclined to easily report expenses.
- Make timely reimbursements: with mobile expense solutions, it is easier to reimburse employees for company expenses. This is important with keeping company morale as well as allowing employees to manage their own personal cash flow.
- Using End-to-End management to simplify the whole process: by providing visibility, you can check and analyze spending choices, with the ability to post policies and remind employees with approved vendors, budgets, and more. By using a travel and expense management solution, you are eliminating vulnerability for your company, and avoiding any type of miscommunication to your employees.