Concur is an SAP Company

Canadians who file expenses Dec. 19 should be on the naughty list

EDMONTON - Company accountants aren’t fond of employees who dump a month’s worth of receipts on their desk at the last minute.

Yet the casual attitude Canadians have toward tasks such as filing expenses is only increasing.

A report by Concur, a company that provides travel and expense solutions for small businesses, suggested Canadian employees will submit more than 10,000 expense claims on Dec. 19 – making it by far Canada’s busiest day. That’s nearly 200 per cent more than the daily average.

Concur came to this conclusion by analyzing expense form data on its website. The 2012 numbers were a 52 per cent increase over the previous high set in December 2010.

The simple solution is for traveling businesspeople to file expenses right after a trip. But human nature tends toward procrastination, Concur’s vice president Scott Newell suggested. The only incentive seems to be looming credit card payment dates.

“I hate to do expense reports,” Newell said. “I enjoy travel, but when I get back, expense reports are an unnecessary overhead.”

To ease the burden on your company’s accountant, Newell offered a few tips to be better prepared. While common sense dictates you keep receipts together and be diligent about filing, smartphones can provide an assist as well. Many companies, including Concur, offer smartphone applications to help employees stay on top of the paperwork. With Concur’s app, you can snap a photo of a receipt, attach it to a line item and then file it as part of your trip.

Businesses can also link corporate or personal credit cards to Concur. Pay for a cab from Edmonton International Airport and the bill goes directly to your trip profile. An accountant can then approve those expenses with a few mouse clicks. The site allows administrators to incorporate a company’s travel policies into the web profile, which will automatically flag suspicious receipts.

“It saves a lot of time,” Newell said. “Whether you’re a company with five travelers or 50,000 travelers, it’s the same system with the same process.”

By Jeremy Cothran, Edmonton Journal December 14, 2012

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