4 Ways To Fight Expense Fraud
One of the simplest ways for fraudsters to steal from your company is through expense reimbursements. This type of fraud is also easily overlooked. After all, how much impact can a few pay-per-view movies on the hotel bill and pocketed money from canceled airline tickets have on the entire company’s budget?
Turns out, the answer is “quite a bit.” According to the 2014 Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse, asset misappropriations are by far the most common form of fraud. Expense reimbursement fraud accounted for 13.8% of frauds of this type and carried a median loss of $30,000. Compared to other types of fraud, that number is low. Still, expense fraud can still have a substantial impact on your company’s budget and you’ll want tools to fight it.
1) Define Your Expense Policies
Implementing company-wide travel and expense reimbursement policies is a tall order, but it’s well worth the time and effort involved. Clear rules let employees know what’s expected of them and help prevent accidental fraud. They also make catching intentional fraud easier.
Most expense report policies include a deadline for submitting reports and require receipts for purchases over a certain dollar amount. You’ll customize policies that make sense for your company and reflect your priorities and needs.
2) Enforce Policies Automatically
Using Travel & Expense automation software lets you automatically enforce company policies. You program the software to require receipts for certain purchases, prompt employees to turn in reports on time, and comply with other expense policies. Employees will only be able to submit expense reports that comply with policy.
This type of system makes it easier for honest employees to submit reports. As a bonus, simplifying report submission also leads to higher employee satisfaction. You should also include a backup plan for times when employees accidentally violate policy.
3) Document Expense Reports
Expense software doesn’t stop at simplifying the process of submitting reports and enforcing policy. It also tracks and records past reports so you can look back and check on expense trends and other data. As a result, you have easy access to all your expense reporting records.
Keeping track of the normal expense reports flowing through your company gives you the tools you need to catch problems. It’s much easier to recognize fraud if you know what non-fraudulent reports look like.
4) Review Expense Reports
Regularly review the data you’re gathering on expense reports and conduct random audits to catch any fraud that slips through your system. Also, train management staff in detecting fraud and enforcing policy. They’re the second line of defense after your automated reporting system.
Ready to fight expense report fraud? Try NextProcess’ Travel and Expense automation software. This highly configurable program gives you the tools you need to automatically enforce policy and also track expense report data. The simple, streamlined process makes expense reporting easier on the company and on honest employees. It’s a win-win for the company and employees. Contact us today and see for yourself how our software can help your company.