Expense report management: how and why to do it digitally

Digitized expense report management makes it easier and more accurate. Discover the top 5 benefits!
expense report management

Today it is essential to carry outcareful management of the expense report, which is that specific documentation useful for employees to obtain reimbursement related to costs incurred during professional travel.

Many companies, however, are not currently equipped with the correct accounting methods, and this often generates errors and delays.

The solution is the digitization of expense reports. Eliminating the use of paper documents by replacing them with software makes management easier and, above all, more accurate, freeing up valuable time for other activities.

In this article we discuss expense report management and the top 5 benefits that digitizing it brings.

What is the expense report?

In the employment field, the term expense report refers to that document prepared by an employee and having as its main purpose to summarize in a single block the totality of business expenses incurred during a business trip.

The entirety of the expenses earmarked for reimbursement must relate only to work activity, and for this reason, it is the company itself that will determine during the audit that these actually match the proof of purchase provided. This is very important, as expense reports are considered a tax-deductible expense.

To be considered valid, the expense report must mandatorily contain:

  • Company references: company name and address of the company from which expenses are claimed;
  • Personal details of the employee or collaborator: first name, last name and type of contract in place (employee, consultant, intern...);
  • Date and place: period related to expenses incurred (from-to) and location of the trip or travel;
  • Nature and amount of expenditure: list of costs incurred broken down by category (lodging, restaurant, means of transportation...);
  • Any annotations: useful notes and clarifications to facilitate the work of the administration;
  • Evidence, including invoices, receipts and receipts, of each expenditure.

How does the digital management of the expense report take place?

The digital expense report management process requires three basic steps:

  1. Drafting: the employee or collaborator completes the document and attaches receipts.
  2. Control: the administration verifies the document, checks the amounts, and verifies that the accounts are correct.
  3. Entry: validated data are entered into the company's accounts and reimbursement is authorized.

Usually the process involves taking a photograph of the expense document, taking care that the image produced does not have any irregularities or appear unclear.

The photograph is captured by the software; then the business expense report is created.

The employee must perform a check to certify that all data has been correctly submitted or, alternatively, enter it manually, taking care to also upload images of the slips.

Having sent the expense report to the cloud, the company must check the veracity of the data sent.

At the end of the process, once the payment is recorded, the expense report is saved in the company's accounting systems and stored, again digitally.

Manage expense reports with Odoo easily and intuitively

Odoo's Expense Management module, all-in-one software for business, allows you to manage expense reports while saving time and increasing efficiency.
You will thus always have a clean and complete account of all expenses that will allow you to keep costs under control.

The 5 benefits of expense report management software

Expense report management was introduced with the aim of improving the reimbursement process toward corporate employees.

The use of software-such as our all-in-one Odoo software, which has a dedicated expense report module-can decisively simplify processes and provide important benefits in terms of both security and organization. Let's look at the top 5. 

1. Time saving

Saving time is one of the main points in favor of digitizing expense notes.

Until a few years ago, the drafting of documents to validate reimbursements for corporate employees was done manually on sheets of paper.

Today, the use of software allows employees to submit photographs regarding expenses incurred in corporate travel in a timely manner, and companies to proceed quickly and easily with the audit and subsequent reimbursement.

2. Data centralization and security

Expense report management software ensures centralization of data and security.

They allow sending, saving and verifying documentation of expenses incurred within a business trip ensuring maximum efficiency and total control of every document contained.

Any information within such software cannot be altered or viewed in any way by anyone without the necessary permissions. 

Anytime, anywhere, and at any time, the company's designated employees will be able to access the relevant documents directly from their smartphones, tablets, or PCs. Paper documents, on the other hand, are often located in an archive and therefore not always accessible.

3. Timely control of payments made by employees

Digitization of expense reports ensures security and reliability.

Both employees and those responsible for verifying the validity of documents will be able, through the appropriate applications, to constantly monitor the timeliness of payments made in order to avoid unnecessary disputes.

4. Real-time control of expenditures

In fact, useful business expense management applications and software enable effective and rapid real-time controls related to business expenses.

This important advantage can be useful in monitoring expenditures and thus preventing them from becoming unsustainable.

5. Digital archive of receipts and receipts

Another advantage of digitizing the expense report is archiving.

Digitization permanently eliminates the - now archaic - system of paper-based expense report management by allowing the creation of a digital archive of receipts and receipts.

The repository is totally secure and not accessible to unauthorized individuals and provides an annual report of expenses incurred by employees.

Expense reports, together with their attachments, constitute tax documents in their own right and as such must comply with the rules governing their retention. All accounting documents must be mandatorily retained for a period of at least 10 years.

Effectively manage all your expense reports

Odoo, all-in-one software, helps you save time and increase efficiency by providing a complete account of all business expenses.

Contact us: we will introduce you to Odoo and provide a free demo.

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