If I'm using online accounting solutions such as Xero, do I need a separate app to record receipts?
It's a good question - for example Xero already has a function for employee expenses.
So what is the point of using the Expensify expense-reporting system that's reportedly being integrated with Xero?
The point of using a third party expenses tool like Expensify is that it's designed to help employees to record and submit their expenses. For example, Expensify's apps include features such as taking photographs of receipts and logging car journey distances via GPS or entry of odometer readings.
Expensify's bank feed mechanism lets employees pull transactions from their credit cards and other accounts straight into their expense reports. This works with the big four banks, American Express, and a few smaller institutions, though we are wary of such arrangements that require users to reveal their internet banking credentials to third-party services.
The idea is that the easier it is to file an expense report, the less likely people are to keep putting off the task.
It's not only employees who can benefit. Expensify also handles relatively complex approval processes. For example, say you are a shop manager and you approve expense claims from employees at that location, but your own expenses must be approved by the owner. Because it integrates with accounting systems that reduces the data entry load on bookkeepers.
So it's not really a question of whether or not you need an expense-recording tool, it's whether using one will make your business more efficient and help to keep your records right up to date.