As you narrow down the goals for your card program in the new year, consider placing reducing employee fraud at the top of the list. Fraud can waste a lot of money, time, and resources that can best be spent elsewhere within the organization.
In order to reduce the occurrence of employee fraud among P-Card and T&E cardholders, you’ll need to get really good at catching and calling out the fraud early on. One of the best ways to do this is by leveraging the spend data you already have. To reach any goal, you’ll need a realistic and effective game plan. Here are some actionable steps to take to uncover employee fraud within your organization and prevent it in the future.
Redefine Employee Fraud
To catch employee fraud early on, it’s important to get clear on what you’re looking for. Employee fraud is not such a black-and-white issue anymore. Oftentimes, employees aren’t out to commit fraud or violate card policy spending policies (at least in the beginning).
Instead, they may not be too familiar with the policy or guidelines to start. This leads to small mistakes that can add up to card misuse and fraud later on. Whether it’s not submitting a receipt because they forgot. Or, requesting reimbursement for a purchase that does not fall within policy guidelines, these are toe-in-the-water examples of cardholders whose accidents may turn into intentional actions later on.
Then, unfortunately, there are some employees and even vendors who may know what they’re doing is wrong but take their chances by trying to get away with it. If your expense monitoring controls aren’t strong, it will be very hard to catch intentional or accidental employee fraud incidents.
Hiding within Your Data
Whether the fraud is simple like a personal purchase hiding in plain sight or a more complex scheme such as purchasing gift cards or falsifying receipts, expense data can help you uncover it. Commercial cards already come with basic controls like spend limits, assigned users, and transaction limits.
However, to ensure that employees are following card policy protocols, you’ll need to use the expense data to review and verify their activity. Expense data alone is great to have. Also, consider stepping up your processes by using a combination of data grabbing, automation, and analytics.
Expense data can be leveraged to find trends in employees’ spending patterns. Or, it can alert you to potential red flags that could lead to employee fraud later down the line. Keeping up with your data and reporting processes is key. That way, employees will have accountability when it comes to submitting receipts and validating purchases by other means.
Manual Review Systems are Often Not Enough
Thanks to AI and analytics tools, you can sort through and assess the data much faster. Let’s face it. Depending on how many cards your program has, reviewing every expense, receipt, and invoice can be nearly impossible. Department heads and card managers have other roles which can easily push expense review further down the priority list.
Manual review systems are very flawed and time-consuming. In addition to this, conducting partial reviews that only check a sample of data leaves unseen data unchecked and creates a greater risk.
If you’d like to reduce the chances of missing potential employee fraud and stay up-to-date with expense reviews, leverage your data in a powerful way by partnering up with an expense monitoring service.
Getting Rid of Employee Fraud is a Realistic Goal
Employee fraud can be avoided altogether, so long as you have the right tools and system. Performing proper internal audits is key and this doesn’t have to be overwhelming as we go into the new year. Fraud monitoring analytics can take a lot of the burden off card managers and their teams. Card Integrity provides excellent solutions to help you review expense data more accurately and with less time required from your busy schedule.
Our flagship expense monitoring tool DataWISE also acts as a service and pairs you with an expert forensic principal who can walk you through how to use our tools to increase visibility for each cardholder and card type. DataWISE can be customized to monitor spend to see if it complies with your unique card policy and standards. This service will also provide timely fraud alerts and analyze spend for discrepancies and red flags.
Let the team at Card Integrity create the perfect game plan for your organization to catch and stop employee fraud from happening. Ask about our expense monitoring solutions as well as our receipt validation and cardholder training solutions.