man holding a receipt and entering reimbursement request into his phone using mobile expense management program

5 Ways Digital Expense Management Benefits Small Business

When it comes to expense reimbursement, you might think only of traveling expenses to attend trade shows or conferences – things that your small business might not do. But there are other expenses that your employees could be paying for out of pocket – like when you send someone to the office supply store to pick up ink for the printer.

No matter what business expenses your employees incur, you need a way to track their reimbursement requests and pay them back. Manually filing and processing expenses can often be time-consuming and frustrating. You have to sift through piles of spreadsheets and receipts, while your team must wait for you to review and approve the request. You can automate the process and make it easier for everyone involved by utilizing a digital expense management system. Keep reading to learn five ways expense software can help your small business.

1. Eliminates human error

Paper expense reports leave a lot of room for mistakes. Someone has to review each expense, match it with the corresponding receipt, credit it to the appropriate person, and remember to pay the person. With a digital expense management system, the receipt attaches to the correct expense and to the employee who submitted it. If you choose a program that’s combined with payroll, like Workful, approved requests will automatically be included in the worker’s paycheck. You won’t have to worry about forgetting to reimburse them, paying them the wrong amount, or assigning the expense to the wrong person.

2. Enforces your policies

It’s normal to require your team to submit a receipt with every reimbursement request. You can set up your expense management software to prevent people from sending requests without a receipt. If your worker tries to submit a reimbursement without one, they’ll be notified immediately and correct their mistake quickly. You won’t lose time going to the employee and asking them to resubmit.

Your system will also notify your staff the moment their reimbursement is approved or denied. This gives your workers a clear response in a timely fashion, and they can come to you with any questions. If a request is denied, you’ll be able to quickly explain what they need to do next time to ensure they’re following the rules.

Read also: How to Write an Effective Expense Policy

3. Increases flexibility

If you choose an expense management system that offers a mobile app, your employees will be able to submit their reimbursements in real-time. They can use the camera on their phone to capture the receipt, so they won’t have to sort through records when they get back to the office. If you reimburse your team for mileage, an app will let them submit their request the moment they arrive at their destination. They won’t have to worry about writing down how many miles they traveled or calculating it later.

A mobile expense management system will also increase your flexibility to do your job. You can review and approve requests from anywhere – even if you’re out of the office for a few days. As your company grows, you’ll also be able to assign permissions to your managers or supervisors, so they can review their subordinates’ reimbursements and approve or deny them, further freeing up your time.

Read also: 3 Ways Technology Can Simplify Travel Expense Management

4. Reduces delays

Does your staff ever seem frustrated with how long it takes you to pay them back? The thing is, when you have to sort through paperwork, sometimes you need to put off reviewing expense reimbursements until you have more time. But with digital expense management software, you eliminate the gathering and sorting. Instead, you can quickly review requests and approve them with the simple click of a button. You’ll take care of your responsibilities, and your employees will be paid back, all in a timely fashion.

5. Improves organization

With a digital expense management system, everything is stored online. You’ll no longer have stacks of expense reports and piles of crumpled, faded receipts that are difficult to read. At the end of the year, you can print a single report showing all the expenses you reimbursed your staff for, including what category each belonged to, so you can more easily complete your business’s income tax return.

Workful will even let your employees record expenses without requesting reimbursement. They’ll also be able to print a report showing what expenses they personally incurred to help them with their tax return.

Read also: 6 Tips for Keeping Your Expenses Organized

Want to see how Workful’s expense management system can help your small business? Try it for free today!