They knew the no-spreadsheet diet existed all right. What they didn’t know, however, was if they would ever be allowed to taste test an expense management option other than a spreadsheet. So when these six co-workers were finally given the opportunity to try the no-spreadsheet diet for themselves, they came together from all corners of the company, united by a common goal to evolve. These are their stories.
Fran from finance
Before: Fran used to live on the border of Frustrationville and Tedious Town. When she wasn’t performing data entry, she was resolving errors. The less-than-friendly back-and-forth with department managers and sales team members was a daily occurrence, which had Fran at the end of her rope. The end of the month always meant late nights with little sleep as visions of the general ledger, P & L statements and VAT filings mosh pitted in her head.
After: Fran shed a ton of weight (all off her shoulders) and relocated to Efficiency City where nearly all data imports automatically. Efficiency City has a terrific police department that enforces all the rules so Fran doesn’t have to. Now she has time to do what she’s always wanted to do: execute a cost-saving strategy that saves her company big bucks.
Marty the mid-level manager
Before: Marty was a rule breaker. Not because he was a bad guy, but because he didn’t know any better. He was constantly over-spending in some areas while under-spending in critical areas that historically have delivered returns. He had a lot on his plate, which is why it often took him forever and a day to approve the stack of departmental expense reports on his desk. With these habits, Marty embodied both the “clueless” and “procrastinator” expense personality types.
After: Marty now abides by the rules because they’re super easy to follow. In fact, the no-spreadsheet diet actually prevents him from breaking rules. He also has access to real-time insights into departmental spend, and he approves expense reports on his smartphone within minutes of getting the alert. Marty has seen the future of expense tracking, and he’s not going back.
Tim the travel guy
Before: So many choices, so many details, so little time. With all the travel Tim manages, he didn’t know whether he was coming or going, which is unfortunate because he is responsible for keeping tabs on who is coming and going for the entire company.
After: Thanks to the no-spreadsheet system, Tim knows exactly where all his colleagues are at all times. The system even evaluates how employees travel and offers money-saving tips, which is great because all the slight changes in behavior have added up to big savings. When problems arise, Tim is the first to know about them and can act fast to resolve them. Tim’s colleagues now travel safe, sound and savvy under his watchful eye.
Sara the sales rep
Before: Sara is responsible for producing revenue, but back when she was binging on spreadsheets, she felt like she was responsible for producing a highly organized stack of paper. Over time, Sara became a “hoarder” expense personality type because she learned that if she missed one detail on her expense report, Fran from finance would make her do it over. Expense tracking made Sara believe business travel was more trouble than it was worth. Upon returning from a business trip, it took her over an hour to organize all the receipts (if she could find them all) and align them with the correct accounting codes.
After: Sara does it all from her smartphone. She snaps photos of receipts on the spot and uploads them to her expense report. No more paper. Charges from her corporate credit card are imported directly into the system and are sorted into neat little categories for Fran and the finance folks. Business trips are a breeze as Sara now submits her expense report before her plane touches down on home turf. Sara now embraces her new “digital native” expense personality type.
Charlotte the CFO
Before: Charlotte had no idea why, despite her pleas, the T & E budget was in constant flux. Overspending ran rampant and cost-saving opportunities took forever to identify, especially because she couldn’t find anyone with the bandwidth to perform these tasks. Late-arriving expense reports changed reporting outcomes from “okay” to “ominous” overnight.
After: Thanks to the no-spreadsheet diet, Charlotte is a smarter CFO. It’s not that she wasn’t smart before, it’s just that now she has access to all the knowledge she needs, whenever she needs it. She makes informed decisions, and she makes them faster. Charlotte has never been more confident in her ability to manage the financial well-being of her company.