How one Company Eliminated Manager Expense Approval

Smith & Nephew, a global medical devices company, realized that eliminating manager approval of expenses would not be easy. “One of the biggest challenges of removing manager approval is…ensuring managers and people managers that expenses are being properly controlled and that we are keeping everything compliant,” says Jorge Monge, the travel and expense lead at Smith & Nephew.

Since moving to Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, Smith & Nephew has been able to not only completely remove the manager approval step, but also increase the accuracy of expense reporting. “Concur Detect has allowed us to radically change the business in a positive way. The fact that we have been able to, thanks to this advanced tool, remove manager approval for good has been quite a change,” shared Jorge. “That allowed us, not only internally but externally to position ourselves as a benchmark. That has really helped us drive the process in taking things to the next level.”

Smith & Nephew knew that successfully removing the need for a manager approval would require a top-down approach, ensuring they had buy-in from their key stakeholders, such as compliance, legal, and communications. Jorge states that they focused on emphasizing the benefits of efficiency and compliance, adding “In general terms, SAP Concur allows you to implement a more efficient, more accurate and more compliant system from normally what you expect to find in localized for specific markets.”

The move to AI technologies has improved Smith & Nephew’s internal processes, but also, according to Jorge, “has allowed us to be regarded not only as a tactical operation but mostly as a strategic business partner.”


Watch how Smith & Nephew increased spend accuracy here. (Part 2)

Watch how Smith & Nephew streamlined executive spend management decisions here. (Part 3)

Watch how Smith & Nephew struck a balance between employee experience and compliance here. (Part 1)

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