Business, Business Expenses

Three ways to control company spending and start saving money right now

7 October 2022  |   10 minutes read
Company spending

Cost of living crisis. There, we said it. Although, in business, it probably feels more like a cost of trading crisis. From entertaining clients and settling suppliers invoices to online subscriptions and travel expenses, you’re paying more for the things that keep your business running. Although you may not be able to change what you’re charged for these things, you can control company spending in other ways to save money.

In this article, we’ll help you minimise unnecessary spending by maximising some of the features in your Soldo account. We’ll cover:

Features differ between Soldo plans, so check out our pricing page for all the details.

How to control company spending

Of course you know that you need to control company spending. But how? You can’t be everywhere at once; keeping an eye on every penny spent by every employee, saying yay or nay for every purchase.

With Soldo spend controls, you don’t actually need to be everywhere. You can simply set the card rules that make sense for your business and budget. Here are some card rules you can set to save money for your business:

Merchant categories

When you’re looking for ways to save your business money, the first step is to find out where it’s being spent. A quick glance at your dashboard will tell you where the lion’s share of payments are happening.

If, for example, you can’t justify a 50% spend on entertainment in the current economic climate, then disabling that merchant category is a sure-fire way to reign it in. You could do this for every card or just those assigned to employees who don’t need to spend in this category as part of their role and responsibilities.

Spend limits and cash withdrawals

It’s hard to know where company money is going if its being spent in cash. If you’re looking to take tighter control of spending, now may be the time to put limits on cash withdrawals – or pause them entirely. If cash is essential for some team members but not others, make sure you’re setting card rules accordingly.

As your costs grow in certain areas, you’ll no doubt be forced to shrink budgets in others. Re-evaluate who needs to spend company money – and how much – then set monthly, weekly or daily limits on their Soldo cards. Your employees will still have the autonomy to pay for the things they need, while you maintain close control over company spending.

How to budget better in your business

It’s one thing to set a company, team or project budget. It’s another thing to stick to it. Even with the best intentions, you can accidentally rob Peter to pay Paul if company funds aren’t properly ringfenced.

Now, more than ever, it’s essential to make full use of your Soldo wallets to segregate funds for specific purposes. That way you’ll ensure that you’re spending the right amount of money on the right things, exactly as set out in your budget.

Here are some ways you might choose to do that:

  • Across teams: create a wallet for each site, department or team depending on the complexity of your organisation. Allocate exactly the amount of money a specific team can spend to their specific wallet to ensure they’re never a penny over. Set up rules to control the flow of funds – move £1,000 in from your main wallet every Monday, for example, or anytime the balance falls below £500.
  • Per project or client: the amount you quoted your client for a project is based on your predicted costs, so it’s essential that you deliver on time and on budget. Create a wallet for a specific project or client with only what you’re prepared to spend and link cards used only by those responsible for managing the budget. Get notifications when the balance falls below a certain limit to track the actual rate of spending against what was expected.
  • According to type: subscriptions, for example, can quickly get out of control if new ones are being set up all over the business. Two teams might be paying subscription fees for the same service – and doubling your costs in the process. By creating a wallet to fund all the virtual cards connected to your subscriptions, you can control costs for that type of spending across your entire business.

How to master expense management

Managing employee expenses manually can get messy fast, which is ironic when you consider how painfully slow most of these manual process are. They’re also inconsistent, prone to human error and tend to lack transparency. None of that’s good if you’re looking to control spend and save money for your business.

That’s why we’ve just introduced new expense management features designed to bring all your company spending into one place. Here are a few you can use to make sure nothing falls through the cracks:

Out-of-pocket expenses

When we talk about taking control of company spending, it’s a broader topic than simply making sure everyone spends a little less. Mastering expense management is also about joining the dots and controlling every expense as a whole – even those that are out-of-pocket.

Sometimes employees will have to swipe their personal card for business purposes or pay cash for whatever reason. Make sure you’re adding any out-of-pocket spending to Soldo so you can track and manage expenses with both eyes open. By bringing out-of-pocket expenses and Soldo payments together, you get an accurate picture of company spending without having to piece it together from multiple systems.

Spending policy profiles

An expense policy is only as effective as your ability to enforce it. And that’s not to say employees are going out of their way to spend outside of your policy, but rules that are hard to find are also pretty hard to follow. By setting up spending policy profiles within Soldo, the rules are there in black and white for everyone to access.

Make it clear how much employees can spend per transaction within an expense category – no more than £400 on a hotel, for example, or up to £50 on dinner. Then run expense reports that clearly highlight any spending that falls outside of your expense policy and show you exactly how much was spent on out-of-policy transactions. Understanding where unexpected costs are adding up is half the battle when it comes to controlling company spend.

Control spend, budget better, manage expenses

It’s easy to feel powerless at the moment, with outside influences having a direct impact on the way you do business. Try to focus on the factors you can control, starting with the way use Soldo. Use the tips we’ve covered here to get a handle on company spending, budget more effectively and make the most of the expense management tools at your disposal.

Don’t have a Soldo account yet? Sign up now or find out more about our flexible spend management platform.

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