Procrastinating on your EDUCAUSE travel expenses?
Posted by Jessica Tatlow
There's an app for that!
Still procrastinating doing your travel expenses from last month’s EDUCAUSE? Already reproaching yourself for that one misplaced receipt? If you’re like me, once you get back to your desk and start trying to catch up on everything that happened while you were away, sorting receipts and submitting claims takes a back seat and gets forgotten. Thankfully, I have an app for that.
The Higher Education expenses challenge
As we have explored before, expense management solutions are not a high profile technology. But, wait! Expense management is actually the second largest controllable cost for any business, colleges and universities included.
Pressure on higher education institutions to demonstrate accountability, transparency and effectiveness in helping students succeed is not abating. So, we need actionable insights to be able to tighten up operations without making cuts elsewhere or alienating travelers. Employees leave millions on the table for employers because of opaque reimbursement policies that leave them confused – and institutions aren’t able to keep up with expenses and reimbursements in a timely way, skewing financial reporting and projections. The travel your institution invests in for recruiters, academics and athletes raises the profile and quality of opportunities at your school.
Wouldn’t it be great to tackle that low-hanging fruit? You could control cash flow, have transparency into expenses and budgets, automate compliance, and improve the timeliness of expense claims.
There really is an app for that
The answer lies in making expense management solutions more appealing and accessible for us procrastinators. Like everything else nowadays, it needs to be mobile so your travelers can enter and approve claims from research symposiums, guest lecture halls, soccer fields and alumni events and speed up the process a hundred fold. Along with accessibility, using it should be a piece of cake so you can skip the intensive training and even make it available to student delegates. It needs to integrate with the business systems that you already use for finance, HR, payroll, and student information to gain maximum visibility. And, it needs to have the ability for you to build policy right into the system to ensure compliance the first time, every time.
From having breakfast (at that quiet Starbucks in the Marriot that felt like the best kept secret at EDUCAUSE) to taking a taxi home from the airport after an invigorating week in Anaheim, I was able to stay on top of my expenses without stuffing paper receipts in my wallet, pockets and badge holder. I simply snapped a picture of each receipt as the transaction occurred and synced it so I could verify the information and hit submit when I got back to my desk last week.