Is your data working for you, or are you working for your data? T&E expense management is considered the second most difficult operating cost to control. According to The Power of Real-Time Insight, a Forrester Study, many organizations still make decisions about T&E budgets and spending without a complete view of their data.
Think about your own visibility as it relates to your employee spend across your T&E program. Are there roadblocks inhibiting your ability to fully see all of your spend? If so, Forrester recommends 5 best practices to consider when tackling your data visibility challenges:
- Integrate your spend data from all relevant sources. When data from credit cards, travel systems, TMC and supplier invoices come from different sources, you don’t have visibility into your total spend.Avoiding data silos byintegrating all the necessary data sources in your reporting allows you to see the bigger picture of your spend and take action.
- Help cost center managers monitor and control their own spend.Whether it’s building reports or distributing them automatically to those responsible for managing each budget, if information is not distributed to cost center managers in a timely manner, it’s hard for them to proactively control and manage their spend.
- Create tools that encourage employees to spend money wisely. For example,can they easily create and modify reports. Can they quickly view key performance indicators (KPIs) relevant to their role and then drill down into problem areas they identify?
- Analyze your complete supplier spend for better leverage. Without a complete picture of your data, you could be missing opportunities to save money or negotiate better rates and cut costs with preferred suppliers for air, hotel, car rentals, office supplies and more.
- Leverage mobile applications. A lack of access to information on mobile devices means there is a gap in data that can’t be collected in real-time. With real-time access to key dashboards on mobile devices, users can regain access to that valuable data.
Effective T&E spend management is hampered when reporting comes up short. Concur and Forrester Research hosted a webinar, “Tackle the Top T&E Challenges with the Power of Real-Time Insight”, on Thursday, November 20th to share more about what the survey results revealed on the challenges financial executives face with T&E spend management. If you weren't able to attend you can still listen to the recording here.