Super Hero

It doesn’t take a superhero: lean, mean travel and expense management

In Spend management by Heather Lohmann6 Comments

Superman can fly? How does that work?

Easy — he was born on another planet and sent to earth in a tiny rocket as a baby.

Anything is possible if you were born on planet Krypton, were bitten by a radioactive spider, or attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It’s called fantasy.

But while it might not be realistic to expect human flight in the real world, best practices are actually achievable, and can make life easier when managing a business.

As you plan for this new year, we wanted to offer some actual, workable best practices for travel and expense management. No superhuman strength, Spidey sense, or magic wand required.

  1. Establish T&E policy guidelines that fit the organization.

Heroes from science fiction have far fewer limitations than the rest of us. Make sure your corporate travel management sets employees up for success so that your real-world heroes can stay compliant.

  1. Define how to address out-of-policy travel.

Assuming that all booked travel will fit neatly within your policy is pure fantasy. In the real world, there should be a way to approve out-of-policy travel needs that will inevitably arise.

  1. Publicize travel and expense management policies.

Your employees may be super, but they aren’t mind readers. Let them know clearly and in advance what your expectations are so they can focus on what they do best for the organization.

  1. Minimize paperwork and delay with mobile capabilities.

A proven cloud-based T&E management system that is accessible via mobile device is as close as your employees are going to get to super strength or Spidey sense.

  1. Make expense approval more efficient.

In Harry Potter, Dumbledore is always there when needed to keep the quest moving forward. For your company, electronic expense reporting lets managers access, review, and approve reports quickly and easily to keep reporting on track and reimbursement timely.

  1. Give preferred vendors visibility in your T&E system.

Every quest needs trusted compatriots to help along the way, and preferred vendors serve that function. Making it easy for employees to choose these travel allies helps keep costs down and makes booking decisions easy.

  1. Simplify compliance with travel policies.

When you’re endowed with superpowers, you have relatively few limitations. In the real world, requiring employees to comply with overly complex expense processes can distract them from what you hired them to do. A system that helps enforce preferred choices can be super.

  1. Facilitate on-the-road travel changes.

Provide employees with what they need to easily adjust travel arrangements while on the go. A mobile travel app can be the next best thing to a cape for getting travelers home.

  1. Address duty of care to reduce risk.

Earth-born humans face more common risks than Superman’s kryptonite, and it’s your duty as an employer to take realistic precautions when your business travelers are on the road. Get input from legal counsel to deliver on duty of care obligations and protect employees – your most valuable resource.

  1. Fix T&E procedures that aren’t working.

Even fictional characters learn from mistakes. Experience is the best teacher and can help you improve incomplete or flawed policies. And even if policies are perfect when created, things change — and smart businesses change with them.

As a finance leader, it’s not defeating Lex Luthor, the Green Goblin, or Lord Voldemort, that keeps you up at night. Lost time, noncompliant spend, and T&E fraud probably do. When you implement T&E best practices, you can combat the dark forces of waste.

Isn’t it reassuring to know that getting greater control over T&E isn’t the stuff of fantasy?

The right travel and expense management solution can help get you T&E visibility, increase compliance, and cut costs. Take a Test Drive and see for yourself how Deem’s comprehensive T&E software is like having a superhero on your side.

About the Author
Heather Lohmann

Heather Lohmann


Heather Lohmann is a Content Marketing Manager at Deem and has been working in the SF tech industry for over 4 years. She received a bachelor's degree from CSULB and an MFA in creative writing from the California College of the Arts.