Expensify – An Indepth look at a great Xero Add-on
Expensify is your online solution for tracking expenses and creating and submitting expense reports.
Even if your company does not use Expensify, employees can still use the site to organize and categorize receipts and expenses for free, as well as have the ability to create reports, either to print and keep for themselves or to submit to others. Together with Expensify’s mobile apps and the ability to connect to Xero, Expensify gives you all the tools necessary to make sure that, as Expensify puts it, your expense reports don’t suck!
Just enter your email address and you have your free Expensify Personal account by default, where you can accept reports for up to two employees free of charge, and you can approve and reimburse your employees through Expensify. You may want to have your IT department set up and email address such as firstname.lastname@example.org, so that you can centrally manage all your expense reports through that one account. Expensify offers different plans suited for every company, and you can create and manage company-wide expense policies and seamlessly group employees all under a set of rules all determined by what your needs are.
Here is a look at some of the features available with the different plans. Everyone starts out with a basic plan and then the upgrades build upon those features. Companies typically choose the Team or the Corporate plan, which will enable you to create expense policies that your employees report all of their expenses with.
Personal account – Designed for people testing out the app and it is free to use! (To check out the other plans, click on upgrade)
- Credit Card Import
- Evernote Sync
- Basic Expense Report Submission
- PayPal Reimbursement
- Unlimited Email and Mobile Receipt Upload
- 10 Free SmartScans per Month! (Explained below)
Professional Plan – Great for power users and contractors
- FreshBooks Sync
- Ability to Purchase Additional SmartScans beyond the 10 Free per Month
Team Plan – Perfect for small companies, non-profits and church’s
- Create and Share Expense Policies
- Sync all Expenses with Xero
- Option to Reimburse your Employees Anywhere in the US Through Direct Deposit to Their Bank Accounts
Corporate Plan – Dedicated to serve larger businesses with 100 – 1000 employees
- Administrative Control of Employee Accounts
- Enhanced Expense Policies that can be Customized with More Rules
- Digital Signatures
Expense policies, are a set of rules that your employees must use when they submit expense reports in Expensify. Here are some different setup options:
- Create different policies for different company departments or subsidiaries even if they operate in different currencies.
- Set up categories that you want to track such as Meals or Travel or if you are using Xero , you will see your chart of Accounts and you can pick which ones you want your employees to use.
- Create custom fields that you require your employees to fill out. These can be open text fields or you can create a drop down menu for the employee to choose from.
- Use Tags, which associates the line item to projects or customers – also imported from your Xero file
- Invite your employees through email and set up their work flow – who they submit their expense report to for approval and/or forward to.
There are several different ways that you can reimburse your employees:
- Direct Deposit – Reimburse employees directly to their bank account up to $10,000.00 per expense report anywhere in the US
- Credit Card
- Bitcoin Reimbursement – A digital currency that enables instant payments to anyone, anywhere in the world.
With automatic bank or credit card import your employees have the ability to organize and categorize all of their expenses. They can even split the charges to different categories. Employees can choose to make all the expenses on their card as reimbursable, useful if they have a corporate card, or just pick the ones that they need to get reimbursed for off their personal card. When they first connect their card to Expensify, it will pull in the last 90 days, which they can keep or go through and delete the items not needed. With the direct connection to their bank, Expensify is able to make eReciepts, or automatically generated electronic receipts for all their purchases under $75, excluding lodging expenses, which are IRS acceptable and will stand up in place of an actual receipt. Employees can connect as many bank accounts and credit cards as they would like, and then after the initial set-up, Expensify will automatically bring in their charges daily, just like Xero! You can also create expenses on the fly, such as cash expenses, quickly and easily as well. You can also create mileage expenses and attach pictures of receipts.
There are many ways that your employees can attach pictures of receipts: they can import from their computer, scanner, mobile application (which we will talk about in a minute), they can email receipts to email@example.com from the email address that is associated with the account, capture receipts from a browser, or with one of the seamless integration with Drop Box, Evernote, LG Mail, and One Receipt accounts.
Mobile applications are available free for all the smart phones and it is very easy to use when your employees are out on the road. When they take a picture of their receipt, and click the SmartScan button, Expensify’s SmartScan technology, will read the merchant name, date and amount off of the receipt and automatically associate it with the expense that is being brought in by your credit card or bank. If Expensify does not see expense that matches that information, it will go ahead and create a new cash expense off of the receipt image. SmartScan is an optional feature. Each user gets 10 free SmartScan’s per month and each SmartScan after the 10 free is just $.20 per smart Scan. If you decide not to use SmartScan, you will still be able to take a picture of the receipt, but you will need to go into Expensify, and manually merge the receipt image with the corresponding expense.
It’s easy for your employees to create and submit expense reports with Expensify. Just click on the expenses and create a report or add them to an existing report. Once the report is created, the employee can still go into the report and modify, add or delete items in the report. When the report is ready, they click submit and the report is emailed to the appropriate person for their approval.
All of this info can be easily exported from Expensify right into your Xero file, eliminated all that re-keying of information. Once your reports have been approved you just click “Export to Xero” and you are done! Your Expensify reports are now bills in Xero! Saving you tons of time!
If you would like to learn more about Xero or Expensify, click the Xero and Expensify picture or visit our website at http://www.daileybookkeeping.com .The owner, Jacqueline Dailey is a Certified Public Bookkeeper, an Advanced Certified QuickBooks and QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor, a Sleeter Group Certified QuickBooks Consultant and a Xero Certified Bronze Partner. We work remotely so we can work with any company located in the U.S. If we can help you with this process or provide you with custom reporting, please give us a call. If we cannot help you, we will refer you to someone who can!