While a streamlined expense management system can make life easier for your business travelers and travel managers, it can also do amazing things for your finance and accounting departments. Not every expense management system will have the power to perk up accounting and finance, however. You need a platform that can integrate into the finance and accounting systems your departments already know and use.
Finance and Accounting Functions
Your finance and accounting teams work with data that’s most critical to your company’s bottom line. Functions include paying taxes, recognizing revenue, entering sales orders, tracking invoices for payment, authorizing approvals for expense reimbursements and the overall catch-all of balancing your books. The more data they have on hand, the easier and more accurate their jobs can be. An expense automation solution should make it easy and accurate by integrating with all major systems.
Essential Integration with Major Systems
For expense management software to deliver the greatest benefit, it should provide complete financial system integration as well as corporate card integration, working with systems that include, but isn’t limited to:
Financial Management Systems: Ellucian, Oracle (including JD Edwards and PeopleSoft), SAP, Workday
Corporate Card Programs: American Express, BMO MasterCard/Diners Club, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo
Related: Expense Management Vendor Selection: Best of Breed or One Stop Shop?
Greatest Integration Benefits
Perhaps the best way to outline the greatest benefits is to point out four major pain points an integrated expense management system helps resolve.
Pain Point No. 1: Tedious, time-consuming manual processes
Eliminating the manual expense management process not only decreases the potential for error, but it boosts speed and efficiency across the board.
Pain Point No. 2: Delayed reimbursements
Travelers can wait far too long for expense reimbursements, which is often the fault of a faulty approval process or compliance issues. Integrating expense automation into your system not only lets travelers check the status of their reimbursements at any given time, but the system additionally guides them to follow policy when selecting vendors and submitted expenses.
Pain Point No. 3: Lack of accurate overview
When expense platforms aren’t integrated into the accounting and financial systems, the accounting and financial teams have a tough time getting an accurate overview of non-payroll spending.
Instead of having all the necessary information at their fingertips, they are forced to hunt down and comb through expense reports to extract and add up the figures. Integrate expense automation into your financial system and you’re providing all the information they need for assessment and future planning.
Pain Point No. 4: The wasteful paper trail
Rather than adding to the already huge mound of papers filling your financial department’s filing cabinets, automated expense management systems move everything online. From the submission of emailed receipts to custom reports and overviews, the only printing you need to do is because you want to, not need to.
Pain Point No. 5: Sunsetted Expense Systems
What’s one of the worst things that can happen in enterprise software? Your customized solution is no longer supported. Companies that may have relied upon expense systems that have been phased out will be happy to know that Chrome River replaces a number of sunsetted expense systems, including Ariba T&E, IBM GERS and SAP T&E. Chrome River makes it easy to switch from a sunsetted solution and gain even more mobility, global capabilities, and functionality.
Expense management system integration with your financial and accounting systems can increase accuracy, reduce tedium, save time and boost overall employee satisfaction. Give Chrome River a whirl and you’ll wonder how you ever worked without it.
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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.