[Update] Direct Download for Reports is Now Available!

We have now added a Direct Download button for expense reports in the Reports section, allowing you to save custom reports directly to your computer.

You asked and here it is!

We have now added a Direct Download button for expense reports in the “Reports” section of our web app. This will allow you to save and access custom reports directly to your computer. You no longer have to email an expense report as an attachment before saving and downloading it!

Direct Download
Download reports directly to your computer as a PDF or Excel file without having to email an attachment first.

What does this mean for you?

Instead of having to open your inbox and access the report from an email message, you can simply create the report and save it straight to your computer, bypassing the old email attachment process.

If you do need to email the report to someone (or to yourself), we didn’t completely remove the email option. It’s in the form of an optional check box next to the “Generate and download” button.

The added direct download functionality is the latest update to the new Reports section – a simple but powerful page in your account dashboard that lets you create custom-built summaries of expenses with just a few clicks of a button.

In addition to being able to directly download new reports, you can also view a list of past reports and download them straight to your account.

Past Reports
View and download old reports straight to your computer.

We hope the new Reports section and the updated direct download functionality make it even easier to manage your expenses.

As always, we value your feedback. If you have thoughts or questions about the direct download update, please let us know in the comments section below, or let us know how we can improve our reports automation by filling out this quick survey!

[New Feature] Build Custom Expense Summaries with Shoeboxed Reports

After months of testing and user feedback, we are proud to announce that the new Reports section of the Shoeboxed Web App is out of Beta and now an official Shoeboxed feature!

After months of testing and user feedback, we are proud to announce that the new Reports section of the Shoeboxed Web App is out of Beta and now an official Shoeboxed feature!

The new Reports allows users to create customized expense reports based on parameters like date, categories, and vendor name. Unlike older versions of Shoeboxed expense reporting, the goal of Reports is to give users an effortless way to create detailed and custom-built financial summaries using their receipt data.

When you log in, you’ll notice that the new design is very distinct from the Beta version. The look and feel is now consistent with the rest of the web app, and you no longer have to bypass a summary screen before creating a new report. The new permanent Reports section is also cleaner, faster, and less buggy.

Here’s a quick summary of what you’ll see in the new Reports section:

New, Cleaner Interface

Shoeboxed Reports
Build new reports, navigate through old ones, and download reports in one centralized location.

Once you click the “Reports” tab, you’ll be taken to a screen that includes a list of past reports on the right (that you can download straight to your computer) and the Reports builder on the left. The colors, fonts and buttons have also been updated to match the rest of the web app for a more pleasant and reliable in-app experience.

Autofill Smart Filters

Shoeboxed Reports
Look for specific categories and vendors in a fraction of the time using new autofill filters.

Vendor names and categories will now be searchable using autofill and a drop-down smart filter selection. In other words, if you start typing “ta” for “Target”, you will see a list populated with possible vendor name matches (it’s like Google search, but for your receipts!)

Quick Links for Date Ranges

Shoeboxed Reports Date Range
Use quick links to the right of the date boxes to instantly select a date range for your report.

We added date range “quick links” in the date filter section so that you can select common date ranges for your receipt reports without having to manually select them from the drop down calendar.

But Wait! We Still Need Your Help

We've gotten user feedback requesting pre-generated "quick reports" that would provide detailed expense summaries without a user having to build them. What kind of specific pre-generated "quick reports" would you like to see automated in your Shoeboxed account?


Uncomplicating the Expense Report: 4 Steps

With an automated expense reporting system, employees can upload receipts, expense reports, bills, and email invoices on-the-go and on time.

Employee expense reports are essential, but managing them is a time-consuming function for any organization. As soon as an employee submits an expense report, the approver needs to review, validate, and approve the expenses to be processed immediately. This process is usually delayed because receipts are often lost, and duplicate receipts find a way to make their presence felt. And unfortunately, a large part of expense reporting processes are in violation of corporate policies. With most organizations still using paper-and-tape or spreadsheet-based expense management, the manual process is a veritable sinkhole involving complex validation and reporting.

Automation of expense management makes the approver’s job easy – and a streamlined automated expensing process is a boon for approvers and relief for employees. Here are four important things to consider to make expense reporting painless:

Ensure timely submission
Employees struggle to file and get approvals for their expenses in a timely manner. In a manual process, the approver needs to cross-reference corporate policies and keep falling back on additional references and receipts. It is estimated that 40% of employees forget to submit their reports on time and once an employee delays submission, it gets difficult to track those reports and maintain deadlines.

With automation, your employees can upload receipts, expense reports, bills, and email invoices on the go. The process is simple and alerts employees about policy deviations, unauthorised receipts, and additional requirements which can be fulfilled immediately. The do-it-yourself module of the automated expense management system makes it simple, real-time, and valid. Approvers also receive alerts from the system to immediately review the expense reports.

Validate expenses with corporate policies
It is important that employees are aware of corporate expense polices including timelines and spend thresholds. It is also important that the policy is clear about what is acceptable and ready to be submitted to the accounts payable. For an approver, validating every expense report is a humongous task. Corporate policy compliance can be increased by incorporating corresponding rules within the system. The system will automatically red-flag the impermissible claims.

Institute a participatory review process
An effective approval chain, which streamlines the expense process, encourages employees to adhere to acceptable norms. In many organizations, multiple approvals may be needed and it is important that all the reports are processed within deadline. Automated expense management can be customized according to routing needs and organization hierarchy. Approvers and higher management should be held to the exact standard as their employees. The automated alert system successfully incorporates this feature.

Leverage data analytics
Approvers can use data analytics to identify anomalies in the system. Reports and trends help in identifying expenses incurred by each employee, vendor, and department. Any unusual trend can be investigated and policy changes can be implemented immediately. Approvers should be able to review expense policies to incorporate new items and fix loopholes.

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners found that expense frauds amount to about 5% of revenues. A streamlined expensing process and a watertight policy, which is implemented through an automated system, can help save time and money. Approvers are accountable for making the expense process simple, streamlined, and trustworthy. Automated systems like Expenzing Employee Expense Controller improve accuracy and enhance visibility of business expenses. With Expenzing tools, your employees can track their expenses real time and the bottle necks within the approval process are much reduced. The profitability and competitiveness of your business is assured through effective cost and expense management.

This post was written for the Shoeboxed blog by Ashley J., a freelancer and marketing operations manager in India. As a marketing operations manager, she focuses on growing expense control software as an open source product, and communicates the value of identity to customers, partners, and the larger community by targeting specific markets through segmentation and analysis.