The holiday season is fully underway. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are in the rear view mirror. If you live stateside, you may be still recovering from a late November-induced food coma. That being said, there is still the entire month of December to do some holiday shopping. This is the time of year when procurement professionals must keep an extra-vigilant eye on their card programs. As they know, the holidays are the season for gingerbread cookies, candy canes, eggnog, and… expense fraud.
The gift-giving season has historically brought temptation for cardholders to skirt their organization’s policy and use corporate credit cards for their purchases. Policy is also often broken in regards to purchasing items for holiday parties and similar events. Thankfully, there are a number of ways that your organization’s procurement department can keep expense fraud under control despite the increased risk.
Give positive feedback
Being communicative with various departments throughout the organization is one of the hallmarks of a a successful procurement department. Communicating policy, compliance, and violations are important aspects of this, but rewarding compliant cardholders with positive feedback goes a long way too. By recognizing and encouraging positive purchasing behavior, you improve transparency of appropriate spending, and boost your program’s confidence. For tips on giving positive feedback, check out our blog post, Give Thanks to Compliant Cardholders This Holiday Season.
Act on your knowledge to be proactive, not reactive
The fact that your company’s spending is likely to increase during this time of year is a known variable. The amount of transactions and receipts will go up. Proactively preparing yourself for the increased data review load is not easy by yourself, especially if you have a large card program. That’s where outsourcing your expense data review to a third party can help with two immediate benefits:
- A complete and comprehensive review of 100% of the data coming through for compliance, so that nothing falls through the cracks
- Reduce the workload for yourself and your coworkers by freeing them up for other tasks that need attention
Card Integrity’s DataWISE service monitors your expenses efficiently and effectively, providing you with reports on a monthly basis.
Additionally, a strong training program is the best way to ensure good practices among your cardholders. Cardholder training should be engaging, and cover your policy succinctly (but not word-for-word so as to be overly complex). We’ve created an eGuide, Cardholder Training Best Practices, that goes in-depth on online training, refresher training, remedial training, tips to increase engagement, and much more. You can download it below.
Five ways to deter employee expense fraud this holiday season
Finally, check out our blog post on additional ways that you can deter employee expense fraud this time of year. It comes down to strengthening your internal controls through:
- Regular policy updates
- Adequate training, which we’ve discussed
- Establishing a clear separation of duties
- Analyzing expense data more closely
- Clear and effective communication
Though it’s not easy, with some shrewd analysis and preparation, you can ensure that your internal controls are strong, that your cardholders are compliant, and that fraud will not slip through the cracks at your organization this holiday season.