Five quick wins for managing business expenses

Business finance
Anna Meehan

Time spent managing business expenses is time spent away from growing your business. Use these quick wins to cut the time you spend buried in spreadsheets and chasing for receipts and instead focus on the future of your company.

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Why is it important to find quick wins for your business expenses?

As a business owner, no matter how big or small your company, you want to save time and money managing business expenses. A large part of saving time and money is finding ways to streamline how you handle day to day admin, such as staying on top of business expenses. It takes work to find out how to maximise efficiency for your business - it’s something you have to learn.

This can lead to a vicious cycle when it comes to staying on top of business expenses. You might not have the time or money to look for ways to help you maximise efficiency. You also might not have the time or money to test out new systems that might not work. What you need are quick wins to help you tackle common pain points and get back to business.

Common pain points around business expenses

There are a number of things working against you as a business owner when it comes to managing business expenses.

Delegating spend

The first and one of the biggest challenges facing you when managing business expenses is finding a way to delegate spending to employees and not taking it all on yourself. It’s difficult to find a system that empowers employees to spend but doesn’t also create more work for you whilst trying to keep track of it.

Using Cash

Another headache business owners will face is using cash to make purchases. Cash makes expenses difficult to keep track of and decentralises your ability to manage who’s spending what. Not to mention, it can open the best of finance teams up to mistakes or even contribute to a lack of trust in your work environment with less visibility over employee spending if they’re using cash.

Using one budget for all spending

Managing business expenses can be challenging when you have to manage a range of spend for different items that all draw from the same budget. It can be hard to stay on top of company spend when everything from ad spend to transportation costs are drawing from the same central budget.

Manual reconciliation

Once you’ve managed your spend, reconciling it becomes another challenge facing business owners. Manually updating values on a spreadsheet makes reconciling these expenses particularly difficult. Not only is this a waste of time, but it also dramatically increases the risk of mismatching expenses and making a mistake.

Leaving reconciliation to the end of the month 

Another common reconciliation headache when it comes to business expenses is leaving all your reconciliation to the end of the month. This creates more work for your entire finance team and also increases the risk of mistakes with a team that’s spread more thin.

5 quick wins to address pain points around managing business expenses

Going cashless

Eliminating cash from your team is one of the easiest ways to streamline business expenses. When you or your employees spend with cash, it’s difficult to keep track of and decentralises your expense management system. Ensuring that all spend takes place digitally will make it easier for you to stay on top of business expenses.

Get company cards

To help your business go cashless, you’ll want to get company cards. This way, you can delegate spending to employees and keep track of it as it’s happening. If you own a business, you likely don’t have time to think about making or approving expenses, from regular subscriptions to ad-hoc purchases. Let your employees take spending into their own hands without needing to jump through hoops to get you to approve it. 

With Equals Money, you can get prepaid company cards for your team to use in over 190 countries all over the world and an easy-to-use online platform to keep track of spending. Employees can access the platform or mobile app themselves, which means they can take spending into their own hands by requesting more funds when they’re low or even checking their PIN if they’ve forgotten it. You can then respond to top-up requests, pause and block cards, and monitor your budget, all on the platform.

Create different budgets for different departments

A quick way to make managing business expenses easier whilst running your company is to create different budgets for different departments. When you can allocate money for specific functions, it’s easier to keep track of. For example, let’s say you only want your marketing department to spend a certain amount of money. If you restrict a budget to only be used for specific marketing purposes, you can have peace of mind that you’re staying on top of spending.

Balances, a feature coming soon to Equals Money, is one way to create different budgets within your company. Using Balances, you can separate funds to be segregated for different departments, teams, cost centres, projects, and more. Each Balance is multi-currency and has a unique reference allowing direct fund transfers from the outside world. Using Balances, you can forecast and manage cash flow for multiple departments, making it easier to stay on top of business expenses.

Automate reconciliation

Manually inputting values onto a spreadsheet, much like cash, increases your chances of making mistakes or mismatching values. It also requires a lot more effort from your finance team when their efforts could be better spent making your business expenses more efficient. You want to get a system that manually reconciles expenses and adds them to a spreadsheet for you.

Don’t save all your reconciliation for the end of the month

Reconciling expenses at the end of the month is inevitable, but there is work you can do throughout the month to save your finance team some time and effort on managing business expenses. For instance, you can get your team to annotate and categorise their transactions as they happen so you don’t have to chase them.

With prepaid cards and an online platform from Equals Money, employees can upload and annotate pictures of receipts to make sure every transaction is categorised. This way, your finance team doesn’t have to waste time chasing after every individual transaction. Employees can upload receipts throughout the month as well, which eases some of the end of the month pressure notorious for accounting.

Managing business expenses with Equals Money

An account with Equals Money makes it easier for you to stay on top of business expenses without wasting too much time finding ways to maximise efficiency. You’ll get prepaid company cards for employees to take ownership over spending and an intuitive platform for you to monitor all their transactions.

As a business owner, you don’t have time to spend figuring out the best ways to do things - you just need to do them. Equals Money can help you implement quick wins for managing business expenses so you can get back to what’s important: running your business.

You can read more about managing business expenses here.

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