Rising transport costs most common expense for 1 in 5 employees

The Inconvenient Expenses study, from Just Eat for Business, surveyed the nation’s office workers to discover how their organisation handles expenses, what the reimbursement schedule is like, and what workers wish they could improve about the process.

With the return back to the office, many UK workers are once again spending significant chunks of their salaries on the daily commute.

However, adding to the cost of living crisis, the cost of rail travel in England and Wales has increased by up to 3.8% – the biggest price hike in over 9 years.

It’s no surprise then that for 22% of employees around the UK, transport costs are proving to be their most common work expense.

The survey has also revealed that there are significant issues when it comes to companies’ expense processes, particularly reimbursement times, which could prove difficult for those struggling to make ends meet.

Furthermore, 1 in 10 (11%) employees reported that they have experienced significant delays with their expense reimbursement, while 22% have had their expense claims disputed or questioned.

The survey revealed that nearly a third (30%) of respondents would like their organisation’s expense process to change, as many workers are frustrated with confusing expenses policies, which often result in slow reimbursement times – if at all.

Mike Chappell, Co-Founder and COO at Formspal, speaks on the often lengthy process of expense processing, and how this admin time could deter workers from submitting their expenses:

“Concerning expenditure reporting, employees and finance teams alike must deal with a lot of tedious and time-consuming manual labour. It’s impossible to send a request to finance unless it has been reviewed and approved by management, and the finance team must first process the claims and balance the transactions before issuing refunds.

In addition, it doesn’t take into account any exchanges before the final step between the parties. This means there’ll be a delay in reimbursing employees, exacerbating the already existing financial stress for both parties. As a result, employees could be deterred from submitting expenses in the first place, for the wasted time and effort.”

So, how can employers look to quickly reimburse regular expenses – such as transport costs – while reducing admin time on both sides?

Lucy Cantan, Sales and Partnership Director at Just Eat for Business, weighs in on the polls: “Completing and processing admin for expenditures such as lunch or work dinners can be time consuming for all involved – whether you’re an employer or employee. However, it’s really important that everyone receives what they’re owed and continues to benefit from paid-for meals and travel costs.

“That’s why we encourage businesses to take advantage of schemes like Just Eat Pay, which reduces the hassle of completing and processing expense forms, and means employees and employers alike can focus their efforts elsewhere.”

To find out more about Just Eat Pay, please visit: https://business.just-eat.co.uk/just-eat-pay

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