As with all good business tools, an expense management system should make everyone’s job a lot easier. This especially applies to travel managers who have very specific needs a system should meet. Those needs can easily be met if you choose an expense management solution equipped with these five features.
Consistent, Intuitive Interface
Training new employees in the expense management system is often the responsibility of the travel manager, but that task can be a snap with an intuitive interface that guides users along the way. A top-notch system will have a single, intuitive, interface, providing the exact same user screen and functionalities regardless of the type of device.
Training hassles go down when ease-of-use goes up, especially when users enjoy the same interface on smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktops alike.
International travelers generally don’t have the time, energy or desire to convert currencies, memorize tax regulations and otherwise figure out how to translate their overseas expenditures into information many expense management systems can use. Travel managers have even less time and energy to do the same.
An expense reporting solution that does all the currency and VAT computing and converting behind the scenes is an absolute must to decrease headaches and increase productivity across the board.
No matter how many times travel managers print out, send links or otherwise review policy compliance information with travelers, they’ll still end up with a few who ask the same slate of questions or continue submit non-compliant expenses.
New employees who are not familiar with the policy likewise require guidance, as do those who don’t travel frequently enough to remember key facts.
Go for an expense reporting solution that offers compliance assistance, and colleagues are treated to key facts every time they work on pre-approvals or purchase orders. The system can automatically showcase acceptable rates for travel-related purchases, along with preferred providers and encouragement to submit their claims on time.
Visibility and Reporting Features
Keeping spend within the corporate travel budget is one of travel managers’ main concerns, and CFOs often want updated spend analyses. An expense reporting solution that offers visibility will provide constantly updated travel expense analytics, as well as on-demand reports to go with them.
Not only do up-to-date analytics give travel managers the information required to review overall costs, but they also provide the most recent numbers on volume by vendor, which spend managers can then use to negotiate enhanced deals with travel services providers.
Other helpful analytics include rundown on the percentage of compliant versus non-compliant transactions and charges, along with the ability to review travel spend based on different departments, locations and other variables as needed.
Travel policies are frequently changing, with amendments and services consistently being added and removed as the travel market evolves. Travel managers need a solution that seamlessly integrates with any number of TMCs, OBTs, corporate card programs, and soon-to-be launched systems, rapidly and effortlessly adapting to any changes.
Opt for the best expense report software that serves up these five features, and you’ve found one that travel managers will be quick to embrace. The solution will meet their most pressing needs while making life easier for everyone in your company.
Our choice of Chrome River EXPENSE was made in part due to the very user-friendly interface, easy configurability, and the clear commitment to impactful customer service – all aspects in which Chrome River was the clear winner. While Chrome River is not as large as some of the other vendors we considered, we found that to be a benefit and our due diligence showed that it could support us as well as any large players in the space, along with a personalized level of customer care.
We are excited to be able to enforce much more stringent compliance to our expense guidelines and significantly enhance our expense reporting and analytics. By automating these processes, we will be able to free up AP time formerly spent on manual administrative tasks, and enhance the role by being much more strategic.