Business expense management is tricky in itself. When clubbed with the added nuances of remote work, it becomes a different ball game altogether. Everything from business expense tracking to adhering to business expense reimbursement policy is crucial in making business expense reimbursement a smooth process for remote employees.
Unlike employees who are physically present in offices, you cannot give out business cards to remote employees. However, there are ways to make employee reimbursements easy and quick for remote staff:
Use Business Expense Tracking Software
Even if your business expenses are not exactly unpredictable, they still need constant supervision. Business expense tracking is an important step towards efficient business management. A business expense tracking software supervises your business’ expenses very effectively. Moreover, this software can auto-scan receipts uploaded by your employees and auto-approve them based on the guidelines set by you. This feature comes in handy especially for remote workers as it enables them to bypass any unnecessary communication and directly upload their business expenses via a mobile application.
Managers can also set up an automatic reimbursement policy through business expense tracking software. This straight away reimburses all approved expenses, making reimbursing expenses as easy as it can get.
Create a Remote Employee Reimbursement Policy
Business expenses vary from employee to employee and department to department. They change drastically in the case of remote employees. The requirements of a remote employee are very different from the regular office staff.
Keeping the differences in mind, it is important to create a remote employee reimbursement policy that takes into consideration the nuances of remote work. For example, you might want to reimburse your remote employees for internet connectivity or a desk setup. These things would never arise in the case of your regular office staff.
Further, rolling-out a policy tells your staff what expenses are covered under business expenses for remote workers and avoids unnecessary confusion.
Sync Bank Accounts for Reimbursement
Depending on your company’s expense reimbursement policy, you might be using a business card for your office staff. This, however, is practically impossible to execute with all remote employees. But, there is a way to ensure sync between your business expense account and employees’ bank accounts.
You can ask your employees to set aside a bank account or a credit card, one that belongs to them, specifically for business expenses. You can then set up a channel of synchronisation between this bank account and your expense account. In the case of a credit card set aside by your employees, it is extremely easy to map out the expenses and reimburse them at every billing cycle.
And for a bank account, the mapping can be done through the business expense tracking software.
Recognise the Pattern of Expenditure
Certain types of expenses always land up for reimbursement every month. For a field remote employee, every month you can expect many tickets and travel expenses coming your way. Similarly, for a remote employee managing client relations, coffees and dinners will be on the list.
When drawing out your expense reimbursement policy, it is important to take a close look at the type of expenses that are coming your way and recognise the pattern of expenses. This will help you save money in the long run. Wondering how? Here’s the answer. If you are incurring expenses on coffee every month then you can set up a deal with your preferred coffee shop. Similarly, if travel expenses are recurring you can tie-up with an agent. Instead of reimbursing expenses, you can start direct channels of payment for recurring business expenses.
These actionable tips will not only instantly ease out the reimbursement process for your business, but will also help you save time, effort and money in the long run.