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Reign in those over stated mileage claims

Action Fraud UK, the National fraud and cyber-crime reporting center defines travel and subsistence fraud as when employees of a company claim for travel or subsistence expenses that are not owed. Typically for mileage fraud that includes:
· claiming for journeys not actually made
· inflating the number of miles actually travelled
· rounding distances to a convenient number
· starting journeys from home rather than from their normal place of work

More commonplace than you may think

These overstated mileage claims help to account for the 5% of revenues organisations lose every year to workplace fraud according to the ACFE.
One of the of the biggest challenges of detecting, investigating and preventing employee fraud with a paper-based or spreadsheet-based expense management system is the fact that it’s an extremely time consuming, manual task to validate the actual distances travelled between business premises. As a result, mileage fraud goes largely undetected unless something out of the ordinary triggers a special investigation for the finance team.

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That’s where using a modern expense management system like Zetadocs Expenses can help. It automates these checks so that employees are discouraged in the first instance from making fraudulent claims. Any exceptions are flagged up to approving managers for resolution, well before the finance team need engage.

Help your employees get it right
Zetadocs Expenses uses Google Maps to assist employees enter business journeys. It does so by searching business place names as they are entered, for both starting point and destination.
Once the journey has been entered, the map can be toggled into view so that a visual check can be made, and any fine tuning made to the journey – say you had to pick-up something enroute for your next business meeting.

Most recently used destinations are remembered so that they can be more easily selected from the list without having to retype them, and any return journeys are also simple to calculate automatically by using the Return Journey checkbox.
If you have set policy warnings or hard mileage limits, Zetadocs Expenses will make this very visible to the employee so that they have the opportunity to either rectify the journey or justify the excess mileage.

Suggested or shortest routes
Administrators set the company’s route calculation policy based on the shortest route or Google’s suggested route, which takes into account a number of factors, like travel time and congestion.

Mileage warnings and maximum limits can then be set on a percentage and exceeded mileage basis for each type of vehicle. These visual policy warnings or limits make it possible for the manager to check by exception rather than conducting manual spot checks. They ensure any excess is appropriately addressed ahead of approval.
The app prompts the approver that warnings exist on the employee’s expense report. These prompts follow the expense report throughout its approval workflow, making sure the finance team is aware of the manager’s decision.

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Eliminate any doubt about mileage claims

So, in summary, Zetadocs Expenses offers you full oversight into how business journeys have been calculated, with the ability to validate them on-screen using maps and visual warnings. This was almost impossible using manual methods due to the sheer effort of checking distances by hand.

Employees are discouraged from making overstated mileage claims by the transparency of the system, and your business is spared the costs of reimbursing excess miles that might previously have been added to business journeys.

Whilst we’re on the topic of business mileage, Zetadocs Expenses will also help you recover the correct amount of VAT paid on fuel for business mileage by exporting this automatically to your ERP system. Too many companies don’t bother to reclaim this fuel VAT because it’s more trouble than it’s worth with a paper-based or spreadsheet-based system. But it’s easy with Zetadocs, and another reason to switch to a modern expense management system.

Join our live webinar Wednesday 12th of September 14:00 – 14:30 register here.

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Make life easier for your traveling business executives

As long as there have been ‘travelling sales people’ or ‘sales reps’, there has been a painful and irksome process called “expense claims”.

Expenses have to be done whether it’s to back up cash claims or justify card payments. It’s simply a fact of life for traveling executives.

Where does it hurt?

Much of the pain comes from paper. Piles of annoying little receipts that you’d rather just throw away but have to keep to prove to the boss that you’ve spent money only on allowable items for genuine business reasons.

It sounds complicated when you start breaking it down like this, and indeed expense policy management can be complex.

Yet when you start factoring in the time needed to meticulously record every expense in a claim sheet, often shoehorning a single expense into a pre-existing code that doesn’t quite fit, and then sending in all the annoying paper receipts from who-knows-where on such-and-such-a-day – it’s starting to become a real pain in the neck!

And that’s just the start.

What about the manager who must sort through it all examining every expense and receipt in order to sign it off as ‘justified’?

Or the accounting team that then has to go through them again, satisfy themselves that they are all justified and within policy, in order to issue a payment back to the traveling business executive?

Time to change the way expenses are done

It’s enough to make you scream just thinking about it. And that’s assuming it all goes smoothly.

Sometimes it doesn’t.

Isn’t it time to make life easier? Don’t we need a business application process that supports us in our day to day business expense claims, rather than one that just places an intolerable burden on us?

The good news is that help is at hand in the form of expense management software. Expense software that’s born in the cloud, built from the ground up to solve all the age-old problems of expense claim management and developed with the help of the very people it’s designed for.

Plus, it’s designed to integrate seamlessly with Microsoft Dynamics® NAV.

Paperless expense claims with Zetadocs Expenses

This cloud-based expense software is called Zetadocs Expenses.

So how does it make life easier for traveling business executives?

Firstly, Zetadocs Expenses does away with paper receipts, or at least the need to keep them and submit them at the end of the month. Instead, executives can simply snap them ‘on the go’ and submit them instantly using a smartphone app.

Secondly, because paper receipts are no longer needed, the business traveller saves time. Instead of troublesome admin, Zetadocs Expenses gives them time back so that they can be more productive.

Thirdly, the boss is much happier because he/she can review and approve expense reports much faster and online – another big time saving.

Fourthly, for accounting teams it’s easier and quicker to manage expense policy, process claims, reconcile accounts and make expense payments correctly.

In summary

Zetadocs Expenses makes life easier for traveling business executives because it’s paperless, fast, easy and convenient. It fits with existing processes that traveling executives follow.

It’s born in the cloud – which means its easy to roll out, use and manage.

Next steps

Download our latest white paper “7 reasons to choose an expense management cloud service for Microsoft Dynamics® NAV”.

Alternatively, contact TES now on 0345 257 1173 to find out how Zetadocs for NAV and Zetadocs Expenses can help you go paperless and deliver competitive advantage for your organisation.

Or register for our live demonstration here.

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4 Benefits of expense management in the cloud

If you haven’t yet moved your expense management to the cloud, we’ve put together a short list of the reasons you should consider it.

Expense management is a factor in all businesses where employees travel for their work or are based remotely.
The challenge is always to make the processes around it more efficient by reducing the time required to capture, submit, approve and reimburse expenses – and a key way of doing this is by going paperless.
As more and more business processes, applications and other operational technologies move to the cloud, it makes sense that expense management should follow suit.
If you haven’t yet moved your expense management to the cloud, we’ve put together a short list of the reasons you should consider it.

1) Dispense with paper
By moving to a cloud-based expense management system, where workers can simply snap and submit expense receipts using a smartphone app (as well as a tablet or PC), managers can review and approve online, and accounts staff can reimburse easily. There’s simply no more need to keep stacks of paper receipts stapled to a printed expense claim sheet, and less to get lost or misplaced.

2) Save time and speed up the entire expense process
A clear benefit of replacing the tedious, error-strewn and slow process of collecting and approving piles of paper receipts is a huge time saver. Expense receipts can be snapped and submitted on the go, instead of waiting to be logged and submitted later.
For the approver, an email alert acts as a trigger to review expense reports in the system – made easier by visual indicators of anything suspect.
For accounts teams, instead of the usual mountain of expense claim processing at month-end, when accounts reconciliation happens, expense claims can be submitted and approved directly. Plus, with expense management software integrated direct into accounting software such as Microsoft Dynamics NAV, there are further time savings as no re-keying is required.

3) Increased organisational efficiency
Time savings made in one area can quickly translate into wider-improved efficiency through the organisation.
A businessman travelling spends less time compiling expense reports; a line manager or supervisor can approve expense claims online in real time whenever it suits; the accounts team can issue payments and reconcile accounts more smoothly and automatically without having to chase claims.
The improvements make for a more efficient expense management workflow overall.

4) Greater accuracy
Mistakes will happen. Whether accidental or intended, a paper-based expense system is prone to errors, and there are few organisations that have not experienced claims containing a dubious or vague expense description, or one which contravenes expense policy guidelines. In such cases, the claim needs to be questioned by the accounts team or supervisor, leading to needless wasted time and potential confusion all round.
By ditching paper and adopting cloud-based expense management processes, there’s less room for error.

Next steps:
These are just four ways in which your business can benefit from moving your expense management processes to the cloud. For more benefits, please download the “7 Reasons to choose an expense management cloud service for Microsoft Dynamics NAV” whitepaper, which offers even more information on this topic.

Alternatively, contact TES now on 0345 257 1173 to find out how Zetadocs for NAV and Zetadocs Expenses can help you go paperless and deliver competitive advantage for your organisation.

Or register for our live demonstration here.

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What ROI can you expect from a digital expense management solution?

Analysing the costs of paper and the benefits of digital processes.

It’s one of the ironies of business life that one of the most expensive elements of finance management – at least in terms of time requirements – is the process of managing business expense claims.
A study by Forrester Consulting, a company which, among other things, specialises in helping organisations free up time through the introduction of new technology, found that 80% of companies with more than 500 employees globally were still entering expense data manually.

In terms of day to day working life, this means that finance teams, managers and employees of these organisations are spending valuable hours tapping away at keyboards, handling paper expense receipts and filling in spread sheets.
Not only are manual systems cumbersome and time consuming; they don’t support businesses in bringing expenses under control, according to 24% of the companies involved.
Some other related issues flagged up in the same report include the following:
42% complained about having to gather data from multiple sources
60% had a problem with a lack of mobile access
43% said the processes they employed made it difficult to produce detailed reports
Further research from smallbusinessheroes.co.uk states that 83% of small businesses in the UK still use traditional methods to log expense claims, and the average employee spends three full working days each year simply processing expense reports.
Multiply this across every business in the UK, throw in the issue of expenses-related documents being filed in disparate filing cabinets, drawers, cupboards and even garden sheds (according to a survey carried out by document management company Cleardata) and it’s clear that a radically more efficient solution is needed.
The Confederation of British Industries (CBI) claims that “by encouraging businesses to adopt the best tried and tested technologies available – such as cloud computing, mobile technology and re-purchasing – the UK economy could receive a £100 billion boost.”
Expense management obviously falls into this.
The ROI benefits of cloud-based expense management solution
Migrating systems to the cloud means automating data capture and collation so that information is collected quickly and efficiently. Submission of expense information can be done via smartphones, laptops or tablets while the employee is on the move and is then stored securely and available instantly.

Perhaps most liberating of all for the typical accounts team manager is that digital solutions mean less or no paper.
Going paperless means that the direct cost of buying, printing, copying and mailing paper-based information such as expense claims and records immediately drops off the balance sheet.
Combine this with the fact that going digital means employees would find themselves with (according to www.smallbusinessheroes.co.uk) 3 more days per year to devote to their actual job as opposed to time-consuming administrative tasks, and suddenly the digital route to expense management looks very attractive indeed.
We’ll let you do the maths to assess the impact across your team.
Altogether a digital, paperless, cloud-based expense management solution offers an impressive return on investment as a starting point.
As automated systems become more embedded, so the problems caused by mistakes, lost receipts and even fraudulent expense claims will start to become a thing of the past.
The time will surely come when paper-based expense management seems as archaic as writing with a quill and ink.
That’s why the savvier businesses are making the move to digital expense management solutions right now.

Next steps

We have created an ROI calculator for expense management. Why not try it out now to get an idea of your potential returns.
Alternatively, contact TES now on 0345 257 1173 to find out how Zetadocs for NAV and Zetadocs Expenses can help you go paperless and deliver competitive advantage for your organisation.

Or register for our live demonstration here.

Charity Torn Paper

Struggling with your Charity finance system? We can solve your problems.

If you’re struggling with your finance system in a Charity or Not For Profit organisation, it’s likely that whatever your issue, we will have seen it before. Here at Total Enterprise Solutions (TES) we are passionate about the Third Sector. We specialise in working with Not for Profit and Charity organisations, and have dedicated the past decade to streamlining these organisations and eliminating many of the common issues faced in this sector.

Common questions:

  • How can I make my partial VAT recovery process quicker?
  • Why can’t we allocate a budget to the budget holder?
  • Can you help us despite our finance system being unsupported and outdated?
  • Can we reduce our paper and maintain easily accessible records?
  • Our accruals reporting is long and arduous, how do we streamline this without compromising quality?
  • How do we save time in our finance department?
  • Can I manage my ERP system on a mobile device ?

Whatever your issue, we can help. Total Enterprise Solutions speak the language of the Charity sector. We know your problems and have spent ten years perfecting solutions to problems just like these. Built on the market leading platform Microsoft Dynamics NAV  (also known as Business Central) we have developed a series of reports and enhancements called ‘The Not For Profit Pack’.

Over years spent working with the country’s leading charities and public sector organisations we have gained a wealth of experience. Built around Dynamics NAV, Microsoft’s on premise or in the cloud market leading ERP system, we have created a tailor-made solution to meet the needs of your specialised sector.

We appreciate the need for high quality service delivery, careful administration and the scrutiny of accounts undergone by charities. TES can deliver an innovative, easy to use system that fully integrates all of the familiar Microsoft software, enabling you to empower your staff and focus on your core mission.

Keep your donors, supporters and funds carefully managed through a finance system that provides data to insight in seconds. Income management, SORP financial reporting, budget allocation and approvals and meticulous reporting practises are streamlined and easy to produce within Microsoft Dynamics NAV coupled with Total Enterprise Solution’s Not For Profit pack.

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We are committed to assisting you reach your organisational goals. If you are a charity and would like to discuss how we can help , please do not hesitate to drop us an email enquiries@totalenterprisesolutions.co.uk

or give us a call on 0345 257 1173

Free software demonstrations available 

Thinking about moving to the Azure cloud

Thinking of moving to Azure? Five reasons why TES agree.

1. We can help you with migration. Azure allows users to migrate their complete solution to the cloud with ease. Saving you time, money and effort, Total Enterprise Solutions can assist you through this process. Or there is a step by step guide how to do it yourself here

2. Security is top of any organisations agenda following the implementation of the General Data Protection Act, and the continual threat of hacking or data leaks. Microsoft have a dedicated security team to ensure the highest levels of security is taking care of the Azure cloud. With the ability to back up your data in various locations around the globe, you can be sure your system is safe and secure backed up in another data center. View our infographic on the cloud here.

Microsoft are also investigating an eco-friendlier data centre in the sea. You can watch a video about this here:

3. We practice what we preach. We never store customer data, systems or our projects on hardware. It is all in the Azure cloud. This is due to its reliability. Your team can access their work any time of the day or night.

4. It’s so flexible. Buy the space you need now, and increase your requirement as you grow. If you have a sudden requirement for more space, Azure keeps track of your solution and will auto scale to ensure your requirements are always met.

For more information around Azure’s scalability click here.

5. From data to insight in seconds. Make educated decisions with your data exactly how you want to visualise it. Power BI and Azure are both tools Total Enterprise Solutions use to help you streamline, secure and run your organisation with to give you what you need when you need it.
Keep an eye on our blog to see Power BI webinars coming soon.

If you would like to discuss moving your organisation into the Azure Cloud and the benefits around this, please do not hesitate to contact us on enquiries@totalenterprisesolutions.co.uk

or call us on 0345 257 1173