Technology promising easier solutions can be tempting, especially for a complex arena like business expense, which can consume significant time and labor for corporations large or small without the correct tool in place. From KesselRun’s years of experience assisting businesses with selection and implementation of expense management software, the key to selecting the best business report software is always to let your requirements drive the technology you use, as opposed to being lured in by the technology itself.
Business Report Software Offer Strong Solutions
From SAP Concur, to ChromeRiver, to Workday, to Certify– all major players in business report software offer strong solutions and benefits, which KesselRun can speak to from experiences implementing all of them. However, whether your business should be choosing a platform ecosystem integrated with your travel booking, such as SAP Concur offers, or considering a cloud or mobile-first solution, such as Rydoo Expense, comes down to a technology needs assessment and considering return on investment. For a global corporation, aligning your business expense software across all countries, for instance, may come with a return on investment – but may come with challenges in certain markets. Especially when globalizing your business expense software, a careful review of needs and pitfalls is critical, to ensure avoiding a square-hole/round-peg scenario.
What To Look for in Business Expense Report Software
The most important task, for any business expense report change made, is to ensure your organization is prepared for this change. When preparing our clients for business expense report implementations, especially when worldwide, steps include making sure:
- Internal IT resources are available to assist with programming and feeds that may be required
- HR systems are prepared/aligned with Travel/Expense profile feed requirements
- GLs/Expense Types are standardized globally
- Audit rules and workflows are standardized globally
- In country financial institutions have technology in place that can support feeds and other expense system requirements
- In-country/region buy-in and support and “power users” are ready to support testing and validation during implementation
Preparation, before the choice of your business expense software, should also consider the skills sets of your internal employees, as well as what tools are in place for other functions of the business. Over the long-term, solutions could end up being less expensive even if they seem more expensive on the front end based on supporting from already-existing tools. Alternately, business expense software that comes with a low price tag that is more labor intensive, or involving skills outside the realm of experience of your existing staff, could well end up costing more. Another element to watch out for is potential issues increasing cost or time before your business expense software is even in place.
In terms of the implementation itself, KesselRun’s recommended pitfalls to watch for include:
- Unforeseen legal mires that cause projects to be stalled or terminated, causing increased costs to get re-started
- Often SOWs are written intentionally vague to leave room for unknowns; however, this lack of clarity can also hurt corporations. Make sure you know what your business requirements are in each country/region and make sure they’re properly and specifically articulated in your contract before signing off on anything – or be ready to pay more for additional work orders.
- Other priorities and projects competing for resource time & attention
- Unique in-country/region requirements that may cause components of projects to be out-of-scope and incur additional cost
- Peak holiday/vacation schedules can often derail or delay project timeline AND roll out/training initiatives, especially in global programs
- Time & Materials contracts can often spiral out of control quickly when hashing out internal discussions while supplier resources are engaged. Having a project manager continually on-top of team members, action items and testing/roll out plans is critical to staying on-time and on-budget.
Why Work with KesselRun Corporate Travel Consultants
By taking the time to get the choice and implementation of business expense software right in the first place, you are less likely to need to change, and incur again the costs of changing business expense software, down the road. If in need of a project manager, or simply a technology needs assessment to determine where to begin, KesselRun’s team of corporate travel consultants are available to review your business’ expense report management needs. We can help you find a solution that fits your business, rather than fit your business to any one technology’s solution.