Small businesses failing to claim back expenses

A large proportion of businesses are failing to claim back their expenses, according to a new report.

The research, part of the Travel in Business Survey carried out by Barclaycard, shows that 20 per cent of business travellers fail to claim back all their expenses.

The slow claiming of expenses is a familiar problem among small businesses and can lead to muddled accounts as well as having a negative effect on turnover.

Alarmingly, 28 per cent of respondents working in companies with 0-5 employees fail to claim expenses, the highest percentage of small businesses.

Research also revealed that, on average, the greatest value of lost receipts was £118.

There are three main issues that cause problems for expense management systems. These are the slow claiming of expenses, information management and insufficient use of staff resources.

A spokesperson for Barclaycard said, “The longer it takes a business to process expenses, the longer it will take to settle with suppliers.

“Of course, employees are also left to count the cost as they must wait longer for expenses to be paid. It is paramount, therefore, that staff are made aware of the role their actions play in the expense claiming chain.”

Barclaycard are advising small business to introduce a corporate card system which reduces the time and effort spent on expense claim management.

Corporate cards pass on the monthly reconciliation and settlement of all purchases to the card issuer, ensuring that cash is maintained and carefully controlled.

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