It’s good practice to regularly review your rules and policies to check they are still in line with what’s required. We spoke to our Audit Consultants, to get their top tips for what to look for when reviewing your audit policy.
Do You Need to Change Your Audit Checks?
In 2020, many organisations will have recognised the need for some flexibility in their auditing requirements.
For some organisations, changes to policy will have been informal and down to discretion without formal changes being made. If this is you, now is a good time to decide whether you need to formalise the changes to create clear guidelines for users and avoid grey areas in the future.
Many Concur Audit customers benefited from the ability to make temporary changes to their rules to reflect the new circumstances. We saw temporary changes including:
- Allowing employees to claim for IT and office equipment – whereas before such purchases might have been handled by the facilities team, employees needed to purchase the right equipment to enable them to work from home.
- Reducing breakfast allowances because with fewer people travelling, the requirement isn’t there so often.
- Accepting claims without needing to see the hard copy receipt; at the start of the first lockdown this was sensible because employees weren’t going into the office so paper wasn’t practical. Later on, it reflected the practicalities of working from home where keeping track of receipts in a space where work and personal lives overlap can be hard.
Whatever the changes you have made, now is the time to review them and decide on next steps.
With Concur Audit, implementing the results of your review involves a straightforward conversation with your Client Success Executive. You have the option to make the temporary change a permanent one, you might decide to revert to the original rule or you might implement another temporary rule. Whatever you decide, the change can be implemented straightaway or on a future date if that’s preferable. Your Client Success Executive will make the change and it will come into effect as required.
Review Best Practice Processes
As well as reviewing the temporary changes you have made, take the opportunity to assess the entire checklist you ask auditors to work from. Ask whether all the checks are still relevant and fit for purpose or whether further changes need to be made.
It is also important to consider the bigger picture. As well as viewing receipt auditing as a tick box exercise to maximise compliance, you can also use the data that emerges to drive continuous improvement.
By measuring and evaluating trends over time, you can spot behaviour patterns and see where you need to take action. For example, if a handful of individuals generate the majority of queries, targeted training might be required. If checks consistently fail at the same point, you might need to introduce an extra check in the submission process. In each case, set KPIs so you can assess progress next time round.
Here again, Concur Audit customers will find their Client Success Executive a valuable source of information. Their role is to work with customers to make best practice suggestions and work with them to evaluate reports and trends so they can leverage the value of their data.
Schedule a Conversation with your Client Success Executive
The end of one year and the start of the next is a prime time to take stock and review. With all the changes that have happened this year, taking the opportunity to review your audit processes has perhaps never been more important. Why not schedule a conversation with your Client Success Executive right now?