Expense reports track and organize work expenses. These reports help employees get reimbursed for business expenses that they paid for with their own money. And it can help organizations with itemizing business expenses on their tax return.
In short: expense reports are a win-win for employees and businesses!
Commonly, employees submit such reports after attending a work conference, driving their personal vehicle for work purposes, or incurring other work related expenses.
Typical expense reports itemize all expenses, with date, amount, and more, and prove these expenses with attached receipts.
What is an Expense Report?
An expense report is a document that lists all of the costs associated with running a company.
For most businesses, certain purchases are required to operate a business, such as traveling for a conference, entertaining clients, or employees using their vehicle for work; let’s not forget to mention parking, meals, gas, or hotels!
Many of the costs that workers incur when working for your company are deductible, though all of these purchases need to be thoroughly documented. That’s where an Expense Report comes in handy.
Why Do I Need an Expense Report?
Expense reports are necessary for many different reasons.
Reimbursing Employees Faster
As an employer, if an employee pays for something out of pocket and requests reimbursement, you'll need a way to verify that the costs they're claiming are correct. This is precisely what an itemized expense report allows you to do.
As an employee, if you are paying out of pocket for business expenses, you’ll want to make sure that you are appropriately reimbursed.
Tracking Expenses Over a Reporting Period
Expense Reports allow you to see how much money you're spending as a company on various types of expenses during a reporting period, usually monthly, quarterly, or yearly.
Doing Taxes Effectively
Expense reports allow businesses to keep track of business expenses incurred during any given tax period.
What Should an Expense Report Include?
An Expense Report may contain a variety of information that is specific to your business. However, there are a few details that you must include in the report.
- Date - This is the date on which you incurred the expense. Such a date matches the date specified on the receipt for such an expense.
- Amount - This is the total cost of an expense incurred, including taxes. Such an amount matches the amount specified on the related receipt.
- Description - This is a brief account of what each of the business expenses is about (usually supplied by the Bank)
- Work Purpose/Category: This relates to the type of expense incurred like meals, air tickets, car rental, etc.
Other commonly used categories:
- Merchant - This is the name of the Merchant from whom you purchased a specific item or the one whose services were availed.
- Account - This refers to the account to which such an expense is to be charged. That is the customer for whom such an expense was incurred. Business entities commonly use Account Numbers to represent customers.
If you’re using Everlance, your Expense Report will also include:
- Purpose - This refers to the Business Line or Purposes the expenses are Classified as.
- Notes - This includes any notes that you have added to the Transaction
- Receipts - This includes any receipts or invoices that have been added to the Transactions
- Default IRS Complaint Categories - When recording expenses, you’ll want to use IRS terminology. Luckily for you, Everlance already has these categories included in the app!
Downloadable Expense Report PDF Template
Are you ready to create an expense report? We created this PDF template to help you create one quickly. Either download this template or use it to help you create your own.
To download this template, right-click the image and save on your device.
To make expense reports even easier, be sure to use a mileage & expense tracker like Everlance.
Everlance is the #1 rated app for capturing receipts, car mileage, and business expenses while offering easy-to-read data and reports when needed at the push of a button.
And to save hours of admin every month at your organization, use an enterprise solution like Everlance Business.
Everlance Business provides a specialized service that includes expense automation, including record-keeping & management for your entire staff. Businesses that implement an expense monitoring solution, such as Everlance, save their employees and finance department hundreds of hours but also ensures accuracy in expense reporting. Recording expenses by hand can be time-consuming and invite many opportunities for error. Receipts are challenging to read, get lost, double-entry is common, and employees will often file their expenses in an untimely manner. This is why an automated expense system, which all of your employees have access to, can be the ideal solution for successful expense management.