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10 tips for better transport and entertainment spend

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In the UK, average transaction amounts on rail, personal car and gas all rose more than five per cent, while average transaction amounts on airfare declined nearly nine per cent, according to Concur’s IQ Expense report. This suggests that UK travellers may have been seeking savings by choosing less expensive models of travel when feasible.

Even so, companies that leverage best practices and automated tools are in a much better position to manage their T&E spend. Not only are their processes more efficient, the resulting data they capture provides insight into trends and behaviour that would otherwise be impossible to see.

Here are ten T&E spend management tips that will transform your business:

1. Review your organisation’s historical spend data

Armed with this information, you can begin making informed decisions about how to shape your policies.

2. Talk to your peers and industry experts

For example, by talking to the Global Business Travel Association, IDC, or even local or regional business associations you can learn how your organisation compares to other businesses.

3. Think about your company’s culture

A core set of guidelines can go a long way towards helping employees understand the kinds of spending that’s within policy – and what’s not.

4. Make sure you have executive support

Lots of good ideas never get implemented because the right people aren’t bought in. Get a plan together, and make your case to key stakeholders.

5. Evaluate providers

Make sure the providers you evaluate understand your organisations unique needs, have solutions that are easy to implement, and can scale with your business.

6. Use data to negotiate

With powerful analysis tools that can be provided by companies such as Concur, even smaller companies may find opportunities to improve the deals they have with key vendors.

7. Lock in savings with automated policy enforcement

With Concur, your policy is built into the system, from the time a reservation is made all the way through to the processing of payments.

8. Small businesses should look for new offerings

Many providers are starting to look at small businesses as an untapped market opportunity. Check with your current travel provider about new programs aimed at SMBs.

9. You can’t manage what you can’t measure

If your aim is to remove out-of-policy T&E overage costs, the first step is to automate your process from end to end – from initial reservation to support to expense reporting. Only then will you be able to measure how good a job you are doing.

10. Finally, once you measure, benchmark – relentlessly

Benchmarking can help you know what’s working and what’s not, and where you most need to focus your attention.

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