Professional Services: How to Prevent Disbursement Write-Offs

In professional services, the billing model is simple – charge clients for time that highly trained employees and consultants spend sharing their expertise. To make these charges honestly, and remain profitable, professional services companies need to ensure employees spend as much time as possible dedicated to their clients.


But there are two stumbling blocks to look out for…

  1. You need to ensure your employees are not held back or tied up by manual or tedious internal processes. This is time that could be spent with clients.
  2. You need to be confident that billable expenses are accurate and charged to clients in a timely manner to prevent disbursement write-offs.


It can be difficult to prevent these two profit-damaging situations arising. Especially in a world where paper, manual processes and complex systems can sometimes still be king.

In fact, according to PWC's Annual Law Firms’ Survey, around 1% of all fee income is written-off due to inefficient disbursement processes. Plus, fee earners can spend hours each week submitting expenses, which places increased pressure on profitability. 

However, there is something to be done. In the same report, firms are said to be prioritising ‘improved use of technology’ and ‘standardisation and centralisation of process’ to address these challenges.


If you’re ready to tackle the issue, here’s some things to consider…

  • Do you have clear company spending policies in place? Are employees aware?
  • How are employees spending – billable and non-billable – company money?
  • What costs should be invoiced and what should be expensed?
  • Which costs are written off most? Why is this happening? How can you prevent it?


To answer these questions and more, invest in a single, integrated, easy to use spend management solution.


Allow employees to manage spend anytime, anywhere. Provide a mobile app to book travel, create, submit, review and approve all disbursements (and operational costs) that can be coded to projects in real time. Use OCR technology for accurate billing and digital evidence capture, which can be retrieved seamlessly if challenged by a client.

Ultimately, SAP Concur help global professional organisations manage their money more effectivity. This prevents disbursement write offs and increases productivity, so employees can spend more time doing what they do best – supporting their clients.  


To find out more about SAP Concur’s work in this industry, visit our website.



Loading next article