In our travels as Business Consultants we’ve seen the many ways in which companies track staff expenditure.
What are the most popular ways to track staff expenditure?
The Petty Cash Tin is still used for reimbursing staff for milk, stamps and other small expenses. It was popular when cash was king and staff could get reimbursed on the spot.
Did you know there is even an accounting method around to manage the float and post expenses to your accounting system?
Another method popular with smaller companies is to reimburse staff expenses paid by cash or personal credit cards through their payroll systems.
Gaining ground these days is issuing staff with corporate credit cards. The accounts department then reconciles each individual credit card statement allocating expenses to various general ledger expense accounts in their accounting system.
What’s difficult about these methods?
Petty Cash Tins are not so useful these days for itinerant and remote workers as getting back to the office to get reimbursed is such as hassle. Also what happens when the Petty Cash Custodian (yes that’s a real job title) is on sick leave?
Also petty cash floats are notoriously difficult in reconciling with the remaining cash plus total expenses; so cash tends to evaporate!
Reimbursing expenses through your payroll system makes sense if it has an inbuilt expense capture and coding system such as what is available with KeyPay. But even these sophisticated payroll systems won’t necessarily have a live link to your accounting system to display available expense and job or project categories.
And corporate staff credit cards? Great because you don’t have to reimburse your staff but allocating the receipts to the correct expense categories can be difficult.
How’s your memory?
It’s hard enough reviewing your own credit card statement and remembering what each charge is for. Imagine your accounts department doing this for you!
The solution is to record the receipt and the reason for the expenditure just after the payment is made.
There are lots of Apps now available for Apple and Android devices that will allow you to take a snapshot of the receipt and answer a few questions that determines how the expense should be posted to your accounting system.
The above example is from the Axsapt Expense App that captures the expense details including the Geo Location and unlimited photos of the receipt, product purchased etc.
It also has a drop down list of valid expense categories so the important decision can be made whilst it’s fresh in their minds.
How good are expense apps?
To determine whether an Expense app will suit your business, we’d recommend checking that it has these features:
How do you account for your team’s expenses?