eProcurement and Expense Management: Gateway to Better Management

Nearly all companies strive very hard to undertake cost-cutting measures for obvious reasons.

While there are number of organic and inorganic methods to achieve that objective, there is nothing like exerting greater control over your expenses, be it equipment procurement, capital expansion, recruitment or marketing.

Easier said than done though, because that is precisely where most entities falter due to the sheer complexity of the processes as well as the intrusion of several extraneous factors.

You need a robust financial applicationthat is not only easy to configure and understand, but also catapults efficiency, visibility, compliance and productivity. You need something that everybody in the firm would absolutely love to use to save money without trying too hard.

 Irrespective of whether you offer a suite of cloud-based platforms or not (it is even more important of you do), the answer is pretty straight forward: you need an intelligent expense management software.

Expense Management Software: No longer a luxury

As is the case with just about everything relating to your business, you may want to use technology to your advantage by simplifying genuinely vexing tasks like employee expense management and cost related classifications. 

eProcurement firms are increasingly undertaking proactive steps tostreamline the process of buying and selling to achieve operational efficiencies and eliminate avoidable expenditures.

To that end, they realize that it is vitally important to use modern eProcurement and expense management solutions.

Through a series of functions like automated purchasing, intelligent invoicing, requisition, and dynamic reports, your core purchasing functions end up getting seamlessly automated.

Why do many eProcurement systems flatter to deceive?

Despite the fact that eProcurement software/solutions have been around for more than 20-odd years, they often fail to achieve the desired objectives due to the following reasons:

  • Most solutions are way too expensive and beyond the reach of smaller firms.
  • Implementation remains time consuming and complicated.
  • The software is not user-friendly with regard to implementation. This means that the lay user entrusted with the task of expense management simply cannot use the software properly or has to depend upon the technical assistance of its suppliers.

Ensuring Policy compliance To Stay Afloat

One of the biggest challenges many companies confront, is to ensure that their expense management procedures are in compliance with pre-definedcorporate policies as well as government regulations. 

However, this inevitably remains an elusive goal due to several reasons. These include:

  • Inadequate control in expense allocation.
  • Procedural roadblocks.
  • Absence of proper data collection and analysis.
  • Escalating administrative costs.

Modern eProcurement Solutions: Practical Purposes

eProcurement software serves multiple purposes.  As opposed to the tedious process of manual invoice processing, auditing and expense assessment, they let you process them automatically to drastically bring down the approval time.

Here are the tasks performed by these solutions to increase your efficiency:

  • Report Preparation: Help you prepare thousands of complex reports with ease.
  • Purchase Requisitions: Requisition any purchase from any seller and put it for approval.
  • Platform-independent purchasing: This means that you can buy any product from anywhere you wish to.
  • Approval Management: Expediting the approval process using cutting edge methodologies like two-click email. Also, intricate, multi-level, and policy related approval rules can easily be configured by business managers without having to depend upon IT professionals.
  • Pragmatic Purchasing: Many businesses purchase off-contract as they’re unable to find out what they need. This increases expenses, reduces confidence, and affects compliance. Solutions like Coupa allow users to enter a generic term (like reviews, codes) to find products, web forms, etc.

Other advantages include:

  • Google-like experience. 
  • Customizable workflows. 
  • 3-way invoice matching.
  • Expenditure, budgetary allocation, and supplier dashboards.
  • Real-time alerts.
  • SSL and advanced password security.
  • Global currencies/exchange rate.
  • Customizable URL.
  • Benchmarking on 18 KPIs.
  • System integration via open APIs.

Additionally, the software also allows you to leverage cost-cutting in the form of enhanced efficiency, timely delegation, and early payment special offers.

Thirdly, they serve the most basic purpose of all, help you prepare many more invoices and other statements than you previously would, thus catapulting your team’s productivity.

Benefits of Expense Management Software

Expense management software, as a standalone program, offers a slew of benefits to business owners and other individuals.

Flexibility

As a practical example, you can program the software to accept/deny items that don’t fall in the category of acceptable expenditures, thereby saving money.

Similarly, a range of other restrictions or triggers can be imposed for miscellaneous items like lodging, transportation, and utility. Software deployment can help you pinpoint exactly where your hard-earned money is being spent.

Time-saving and convenience

Expense management software can also be used to prepare real-time expenses receipts anytime.

Subsequently, these reports can be tailored to address your specific business requirements and can be used by the finance departments to process the information.

Compatibility with other ERP program

The software is perfectly workable with existing ERP and payroll systems, which obviates your need to recheck payment and expenses every time you run it on the machine.

Information sharing

Expense management software is also very useful, in that it provides numerous ways for checking out expenses within your company.

This means that it is no longer impossible to track the exact amount spent on that dubious vendor or even the spending of any member of staff working in any department of the entity.

The primary benefit of an automated solution is that it emboldens you to make customized reports that offer intelligent insights. A case in point is that the software highlights the smallest of errors or omissions.

Currency conversion

If your accountant is annoyed about the various currency conversions and related complexities ensuing overseas travel; here is one more reason why you must embrace an expense management solution.

The software can easily convert and then calculates exchange rates to help you make picture reports. 

Takeaway pointers

The assertion that businesses can actually achieve cost savings is not something that is a theoretic concept which is flouted around by academicians and intellectuals.

Consequently a list of firms surveyed by the prestigious Aberdeen Group, the usage of this software pushed down report processing expenses by 63%. Similarly, respondents (which included full time professionals) pointed out that their administrative expenses were also reduced by 79%.

Therefore, it can be concluded that using eProcurement and expense management software you can bring more than its share of practical benefits to your enterprise.

Are you listening to the needs of your financial departments and reducing your expenditures?

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