British companies lost £1.3bn in fraudulent claims in 2010

Call to clamp down on out of policy expenses claims

UK businesses lost £1.3bn through excessive and fraudulent expenses claims during 2010, a new report has revealed.

The GlobalExpense Employee Expenses Benchmark Report 2011 drew on 11.2 million expense claims made by over 308,000 UK-based employees between 2006 and 2010.

Out of the £1.3bn loss, £324m was for fraudulent claims, and £999m was for claims outside the company policy. On average 10% of claims were outside company policy last year, the report found.

David Vine, chief executive of GlobalExpense, said: “Clearly bosses of UK businesses can be doing a lot more to control costs and save money within their organisations, particularly when it comes to scrutinising the company’s expense policy.

“The proportion of claims that are outside company policy, but are approved anyway, is still too high and fraudulent claims remain a problem.  Businesses need to improve policy enforcement and should insist on getting receipts from their employees to support all claims.”

The survey revealed that many managers are practicing double standards by enforcing tighter compliance rules on employees, but increasing their own out of policy spend by as much as 30% in the last year. However, the average expense-claiming employee in the UK made just 33 claims in 2010, compared to 38 in 2009.

While the average expense claim in 2010 rose to £62.08 compared to £57.46 in 2009, the average amount claimed over the year dropped from £2,181 in 2009 to £2,051 in 2010. 

© Crimson Business. Ltd 2011

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