This expense management platform checklist for comparing and selecting the best expense management system for your business will help you identify the needs of your business and the expense management system to match your unique spend tracking requirements.

BASIC CRITERIA CHECKLIST

Platform

  • Pre-paid, Debit, and Credit Cards. Does it work with pre-paid, debit, and credit cards?
  • Supported Mobile Portal. The newest platforms provide availability via a mobile application or web page accessible by smartphones and tablets. (i.e. iPhone or Android.)
  • Mobile Payments. Does the platform provide employees with the fl exibility of physical cards AND the added convenience of virtual and mobile cards?
  • Offline Capability. The capability of the system does not need to depend on access to an internet connection. Can you code expenses while on a flight or riding the subway and upload the report later?

Expense Report

  • Receipt Scanning. How do employees upload receipts, and does the platform have the technology to pre-populate the expense report from the receipt scan?
  • Automatic Alerts. Does the system have the capability to generate automatic alerts to assist in policy compliance? Types of alerts could include: corporate policy violation, missing receipt, duplicate expense, un-submitted and overdue expenses, and automatic email notifications.
  • Travel Management Travel Booking & Itinerary Viewing. Can employees book travel from within the software or auto-populate expense reports from their travel itinerary? This can include the added facility of trip authorization and itinerary updates.
  • Captures Mileage, Time and Additional Billable Expenses. Does the solution include fields for travel management and auto-populate, or require manual entry?
  • Flexible Expense Coding. Does it allow the user to code an expense to multiple cost centers (i.e., expense category, project, client, location, etc.)? Do they limit the number of cost centers per spend? Are there enough for your organization’s chart of accounts? Does the technology allow you to split an expense and code it to two categories or projects?
  • Expense Auto-categorization Feature. Does the system have the capability to begin recognizing how an expense may be categorized based on the vendor?
  • Assistants/Admin Login. Does this platform contain a feature allowing access to an individual’s profile from another profile?
  • Flexible Approval Process. Would you have access to a customizable approval process allowing the ability to approve/return individual expenses from the report, set parameters on number of approvers, etc.?
  • Map Feature. Would you be able to synchronize with mapping technology (such as Google Maps) to auto-populate mileage and reimbursement rate for the expense report?
  • Currency Conversion. Does the platform limit the amount of allowable currency conversions?

Administration

  • Reporting and Analysis Capability. Customizability of report and analysis formats is key. Does the solution allow for the inclusion of key performance indicators (KPIs) and other significant data points prioritized by your organization?
  • Audit Trail. Where, how, and for how long does the system store receipts? Are you limited to a short window of availability?
  • Policies and Procedures. Could you customize the platform to the extent that you may create, update, and manage policies?

Integrations

  • Accounting System Integration. If you have an ERP system, how does the system work with your current ERP? Can the systems interact directly or do they require a file upload or workaround?
  • Reimbursement Structure. Does the system support multiple payment types, including payroll, direct deposit, PayPal, and other formats?
  • Credit Card Integration. Does the system link between the employee profile and corporate or personal cards for timely statement updates? Also, does the system works with your specific bank?
  • Other Supported Integrations. What other workflow systems are you considering (Accounts payable workflow software, payroll, time and attendance, etc.)? Some expense management software includes other modules or can integrate with separate systems.

Implementation

  • Billing Model. Does the company charge per user, per month, or per report? Is there an implementation fee? Are there incremental charges (i.e., if you have more users per month than expected)?
  • Implementation Time. How long will it take for the system to be fully operational within your space?
  • Customer Support. What level of user support and training does the spend management implementation team provide with the contract?

Miscellaneous

  • Additional Features or Add-ons. (Fill in any other important features unique to your organization).

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