7 T&E scenarios where pre-knowledge is power

"If only I would have known sooner" can be a costly quotation in business. And for too many businesses, this saying is all too common. But fortunately, when it comes to T&E management, more people are now saying, "I’m sure glad I knew that." Read on to discover seven scenarios where timely access to T&E insights can make a major difference.  

1. Where did that expense come from?

Everyone assumes the budget is looking beautiful and then, BAM! An unexpected expense changes the outlook of everything. Were the projections off? Did a few people (or even one person) wait to submit a few months of cumulative expense reports?

Regardless of how the budget got bent out of shape, it likely could have been prevented with an expense management solution that features business intelligence reporting. Using a combination of historical and real-time data that stems from automation, integration and mobile workflows, company leaders can feel confident that they are making sound decisions using real-time, accurate insights.  

2. Why are hotels charging double their normal rate?

If you travel regularly, you’ve probably experienced skyrocketing lodging prices due to an event or seasonal changes. With certain T&E solutions in place, you can find out right away when rates are rising so you can adjust accordingly. You can even provide a price to beat to gain access to alternative lodging recommendations in nearby locations.

Companies can also save money by capturing all available booking options. In a recent article featured on CPO Rising, Research Director and VP of Operations at Ardent Partners Christopher Dwyer wrote, “The concept of ‘open booking’ is often perceived as scary…but it’s becoming an accepted component of the business travel world. Options such as Airbnb and Uber will always fall outside of preferred supplier programs, yet they remain cost-effective booking tools, albeit in a non-traditional platform. Contemporary travel and expense management programs must include linked capabilities (analytics, spend management, etc.) that can accurately capture all booking options, even non-traditional sites and mobile applications.”  

3. My flight changed.

Have you ever taken a tram to a remote corner of a colossal airport only to find that your flight itinerary has completely changed? Wouldn’t it be nice to receive a mobile notification beforehand? With a mobile T&E solution (like TripIt), you can.  

4. Travel security alert.

For travel managers, employee safety is of the utmost importance. Luckily, when certain events arise, today’s travel managers can quickly identify where all on-the-road employees are and can send mobile alerts that help them to avoid travel delays, and even more importantly, danger.  

5. Our client is not going to be happy about this.

Nobody likes delivering bad news to a client. Clients especially don’t like it. For professional services firms and other similar companies, margins must be watched carefully because they mean the difference between a successful client partnership and a fruitless relationship. The ability to recognize early that you are about to perform $50k worth of work when you agreed to bill $25k (when oftentimes this added cost is eaten by the service provider) can save time, money and clients.  

6. Why weren’t we prepared for these regulatory changes?

It’s normal for most organizations to operate within a certain set of regulatory demands. And for financial services and non-profit organizations, compliance requirements can be substantial and ever-changing. There’s little gray area when it comes to compliance – either you are or you aren’t. And if companies aren’t, they can expect stiff fines, penalties and intensified scrutiny.

Luckily, your expense management solution can keep up with regulatory changes for you, notifying you of changes and automatically adjusting rates and procedures as needed.  

7. That needed immediate approval.

Have you ever had a timely budget request that wasn’t approved because of a cumbersome process? There are few things more frustrating than hearing opportunity knocking when you don’t have the key to let it in. With the technology available today, there’s no excuse for missing out on timely opportunities due to antiquated expense management workflows. Companies that use mobile expense management solutions don’t have to worry about missed opportunities because they can send urgent mobile notifications to gain approval for opportunistic expenses whenever they arise.

Do any of these scenarios sound familiar? If so, is it time to ramp up T&E insights at your company?

Empower your entire organization by taking control of expenses. Learn how with The Essential Guide to Managing Expenses.

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