We at BearingPoint are writing a series of blogs about our partnership and capabilities with SAP®Concur®. This Blog focuses on the spend governance and how the functionalities within SAP Concur solutions can support your organization in providing structure and visibility into the travel and expense (T&E) spending.

When talking with our clients, we constantly hear about the need to increase visibility and control in the area of travel and expense spending. Many companies are still using multiple solutions to track employee expenses and therefore there is no overall visibility on planned and actual costs. The lack of transparency and cumbersome T&E solutions often lead to laborious manual processes for all participants, ranging from the traveler to the controller.  

SAP Concur solutions offer many concrete functionalities that can increase visibility and structure in the T&E process.

Preapproval process for T&E costs 

Firstly, how about a possibility to set up a preapproval process for your T&E costs? For finance organizations and managers this enables predicting the costs and preventing unwelcome surprises at the end of the month. From the finance perspective, this functionality offers a possibility to accrue costs into the correct period, making statutory and management reporting even more accurate. In SAP Concur solutions, the preapproval process does not have to be time-consuming for the managers, as the approvals can be handled “on the go” via the mobile app.  

Standardized processes with built-in quality checks 

Secondly, SAP Concur solutions standardized processes across different countries allow to build in quality checks across the process to enhance data quality and coherence with the organization’s travel policies. One example of a possible built-in functionality offered by Concur Expense relates to setting time limits to the submission of claims. This ensures that all claims are be submitted in time, preventing the famous “hockey stick” phenomenon before holidays and yearends.  

Centralize T&E processing to Shared Service Center 

Thirdly, the standardization also offers the possibility to centralize the T&E processing to Shared Service Center (SSC) type of functions, which helps to increase the cost efficiency of process steps that you still want to keep manual. Moving the T&E processing to SSC functions would not be as cost effective or even possible if all legal entities within the organization had their own tools and processes, as then the knowledge of tools, processes and procedures would need to be taught to every T&E accountant. 

SAP Concur solutions also offers a comprehensive reporting solution via the built in Cognos reporting tool. There are a plenty of standard reports available and it is also possible to produce custom reports based on specific needs. Reporting helps to increase visibility and get more accurate information on the estimated and actual expenses. Approvers can get an up-to-date status of the planned and spent expenses within their team/project, and reports can be sent automatically on a timely manner, helping to control the costs.

How BearingPoint can help with T&E transformations

We at BearingPoint are not just a SAP Concur Partner but also have the knowledge and capabilities to guide you through the Travel and Expense transformation. Our expertise in SAP Concur solutions and process harmonization enables us to deep dive into your processes and identify potential bottlenecks impacting the overall design of a modern T&E solution. Together we can rethink the area of travel and expenses from the process, data and technology perspective. It will enable the development of a harmonized and modern T&E solution, which fits into your current IT landscape and more importantly, increases the end-user satisfaction. 

Our Center of Excellence can also be your trusted partner throughout the implementation and ensure a smooth transformation. Our SAP Concur solution certified consultants provide leading practices throughout the implementation from the process and technology perspectives to guarantee that the implemented solution is fit for your needs.  BearingPoint’s project and change management experts enable a successful adoption of the new solution and processes.

Read more about our SAP Concur partnership 

Contact us for more information

Annukka Tirronen
Head of Cloud Transformation Services

Kaisla Pakkanen
Business Consultant