Expense Report Software

Expense Report Software is growing in popularity, for good reason. Many companies have found significant cost savings in using such software over traditional paper-based methods of expense reimbursement.

In the past, employees who wish to have expenses reimbursed would have one option: to fill out a paper expense report or Excel spreadsheet and submit it to a manager for approval. Once approved, the expenses would be manually entered into an accounting system or Accounts Payable, and paid out.

expense report software

Expense Reporting

Using traditional methods, additional costs are incurred in several ways: first, staff must spend time entering data; the more expenses to key in, the greater the cost. Second, managers may approve expenses either typically not allowed, or above the amount specified in expense guidelines.

How much you might save using expense report software depends on the average amount you spend on each expense report. A general rule of thumb is:

  • If you spend $100 or less per month per employee your savings will be nominal at best.
  • If you spend over $300 per month per employee you will usually save more than the cost of the service.
  • If you spend between $200 and $300 per month per employee it is a judgement call.

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Top 5 Reasons Online Expense Reporting Can Save You Money

How Does Expense Report Software Work?

Online expense reporting is a hosted Software as a Service (SaaS)application. To fill out Expense Reimbursement claims, an employee logs directly into the site, and enters each expense.

An administrator can program in which expenses are acceptable and any limits on expenditures. (For example, make $50 per day the maximum for car rentals and make bar tabs not reimbursable, etc.) The administrator can also program in which employees are allowed reimbursement for various types of expenses: only employee A and B are allowed reimbursement for hotels, while employees C and D may rent cars, for example.

Paperless employee expense report services are usually set up in one of two ways:

  • The ability to override the maximum allowance for expenses. If a maximum hotel allowance is $250, you can enable certain employees or supervisors to override the claim. With this feature, you can then see when special exceptions are made and track them. With the traditional paper or Excel spreadsheet method, these often go through automatically and often result in overpayment errors.
  • Set up a Hard Code: the system just won't accept an expense over the limit. In our hotel example, a $200 expense would be denied--the employee would need to key in $150 maximum.

Using Expense Report Software gives you the ability to easily account for a wide range of expenses, and enables the following expense report automation:

  • Credit card expense report
  • Business competition expense report
  • Travel expense report form
  • Daily expense report form
  • Weekly expense report form
  • Mileage expense reports
  • Office expense report
  • International expense reports

Key Features of Travel Expense Software

What Accounts for the Savings by using Employee Expense Report Software?

A small part of the savings is the time it takes to manually enter these expense reports into an accounting system or Accounts Payable by the payroll specialist.

The majority of the savings comes from preventing employees from violating the rules or guidelines for what is acceptable or unacceptable for expenses. For example, if your company's maximum allowance for hotel reimbursement is $150, and an employee enters $200, the employee will get an error message and be unable to enter the full $200. With traditional methods, chances of catching these over-expenditures are nominal unless you constantly audit for errors.

According to the Aberdeen Group, companies who best utilize expense management software have established compliance rates that are 36% higher and processing costs that are 73% lower than their peers.

Not only do they utilize the latest technology to assist them in managing expenses, but they have also established enterprise-wide policies and processes to govern management of T&E expenses, including definition and handling of out-of-policy submissions, to ensure that all employees are operating under the same guidelines. In addition, these companies proactively track compliance and audit their expense reports. This leads to fewer cases and a 75% higher incremental reduction in fraud.

International Expense Management requires a thorough knowledge of a country's laws relating to taxation and expense reimbursement. We can provide information and quotes for the following areas:


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