Did you know that there are more ways to organize and automate your school’s expenses?

In any educational institution, academic grades, student numbers, and tuition fees are not the only crucial information to keep. Due to the fact that schools handle a large amount of data like these, it is just right that most educational institutions purchase a reliable school management system.

A management system or software helps automate multiple school functions from student admission to day-to-day live classes. However, it isn’t only confined to these functionalities.

Unknown to some, there are other numerical data that serve as an internal cog to the school system. Like how the school takes care of student fee collection, it also pays attention to its faculty and staff needs. School employees make use of materials, equipment, and miscellaneous. Most often than not, they purchase supplies from outside sources in accordance with the needs of the department.

The most common type of employee expense is the reimbursement of travel and expense. It involves all types of school expenses. Because of this, they must report the cost of these expenses for the school management to control all means of spending. The system in processing these expenses is known as the expense approval process.

In order to provide the students the best educational experience possible, it is equally important to address the supplementary needs of the teachers and other employees. An effective expense approval process allows your school’s accounting department to ensure transparency in expense claims solutions. Moreover, it gives documentation or advanced reporting of all the departmental expenses. By doing this, it helps the rightful authorities to gain insights into the company’s spending.

For us to give you more view on the specifics of the expense approval process, here are this article’s FAQs:

  1. What is an expense approval process?
  2. Why do schools need an expense approval process?
  3. How to set an expense approval process in schools?
  4. What are the benchmarks of a reliable expense approval management software for schools?

What Is an Expense Approval Process?

In businesses and educational institutions, the expense approval process helps streamline repetitive and predictable tasks in generating the expense process. An expense approval process can have management software that automates the workflows in creating, approving, and controlling expense claims. The management system for expense approval involves a set of procedures to monitor and optimize spending in a school per department.

Depending on the school’s requirements, the claim for the expense approval can only be authorized by an officer-in-charge who is likely superior. The accounting department’s job in companies or schools is to document everything to secure tax deductions and that all claims are valid. By doing so, it makes it more efficient to plan an effective budget in case there will be departmental activities involving the school staff.

Why Do Schools Need an Automated Expense Approval Process?

Automating an expense approval process to schools makes it easier for human resources to approve or reject a claim. At the same time, it efficiently enforces the school admin’s expense policy. A digitized expense approval process lifts the dreadful task of compiling and clipping receipts to spreadsheets.

Unlike the manual expense approval system, an automated report software keeps the hassle of recalling where these receipts are and take time filling out the spreadsheets every end of the month.

The real challenge in expense reporting is in going through the actual process of getting claim approvals. Not only do employees take time in waiting for these expense approvals, but the accounting department also takes time in encoding data to the system.

Not to mention whether some companies or educational institutions opt to reimburse employees and bill clients as individuals or per department. Considering this, schools can take advantage of an automated view of the cash flow in a matter of minutes.

In addition to the benefits of an expense approval system is that it makes it easier to reduce expense fraud. It is more accurate to point out whether a claim is invalid, especially if the request violates the school policies in terms of expenses. In a major sense, it is credible documentation for finding where the money goes.

Finally, a proactive application of the expense approval system enforces compliance and trust in the school organization. Whereas approval and rejection of claims are jobs for the finance manager, the employees can have role-based access in protecting sensitive information upon request.

It gives a smooth process for both ends as backing and forth due to errors will be avoided. Furthermore, the expense approval software eliminates the informality of only verbal requests of reimbursements. It ensures the budget-owners that the request is allowable, thus making way for a better allocation and management of the school finances.

How to Set an Expense Approval Process in Schools?

Setting a digitized expense approval process in your school isn’t rocket science. Like in a typical and manual spreadsheet, an automated one is also with compilations of scanned, photographed, and email receipts. When employees attempt to claim reimbursement, the accounting person must make sure that every transaction should align with the company’s expense policy.

Once the financial department receives reimbursement requests, the automated expense approval software takes care of the more specific details of the expenses. The authorized person then selectively approves or denies the claim in automation before processing the payment. If in case the expense claim doesn’t meet the rule-based requirements, the software automatically returns it to the sender.

The accounting department may have a choice as to whether request an alteration of the claim or provision of additional documentation. However, if the person approves the claim, it can now be routed to the finance department for reimbursement. The expense approval process usually follows these steps:

1. Establish an expense approval form.

Your expense report can follow a customized Excel template that suits your school expense solutions. Usually, building an approval form using software introduces a display by category of expense. This is for easier sorting of the accounting or finance team in your school.

Moreover, totals and subtotals were specified and computed automatically in the template. In addition, it allows digital attachments from computer uploads or using a mobile device. Lastly, the accounting person in charge may approve the expense report using an e-signature.

2. Create a framework for your expense approval workflow.

Upon the creation of your expense approval form, it is equally important to design your expense approval workflow for a seamless process. Usually, when the expense claim request is issued, the next step will be to submit it to the department head. This is for confirming whether the reimbursement is valid. When the school requires the approval of the CFO, the expense report will be directed to him/her for further processing. Following a standardized and automated workflow reduces disorderliness and prioritizes end-users such as managers or department heads.

3. Update the Expense Approval Process to the Faculty and Staff

Finally, you may now introduce your automated expense approval process to everyone who needs to apprehend the flow for future uses. The digital workflow not only benefits the heads and managers who face the challenges of the monthly expense claims. In the bigger view, it also makes way for avoidance in wasting significant resources like time and money!

A Benchmark of a Reliable Expense Approval Management for Schools

GoSchooler’s accounting software is one of the many great features that provide a reliable system for expenses. It has a friendly and easy-to-use interface for automated payroll processing, as well. It also caters to a hassle-free generation of reports for all the budgets from different departments in a school year. Its adaptable financial management system provides a streamlined workflow in storing financial reports and fee management.

Screenshot is taken from GoSchooler’s Reports tab. It shows all the automatically generated reports from its several school management features.

Moreover, GoSchooler increases efficiency in automated expense approval management which is suitable for meeting the needs of private schools, K-12 schools, secondary schools, colleges, universities, and all other educational institutions.

Conclusion

A digital expense approval system in your school greatly helps administrators and managers who face the challenges of manual data entry. Managing an expense approval process manually takes a lot of time and is more prone to human error and lost documents.

Setting up an automated expense approval system overcomes these challenges. It keeps a clean record of materials and other supplies to procure on time. Because of this, the finance department won’t have a hard time retrieving important receipts or documents.

Likewise, employee reimbursement will be well-received. After all, an educational institution’s approach to expenses shall never compromise the cash flow. In other words, it shall not be a reason for money wastage and moral misconduct among the people involved.

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