Rather than spend first then ask for invoice / reimburse later, some companies opt to use “purchase orders” or “purchase requests” where cardholders must obtain permission from an administrator for a designated expenditure. It can be used to control both internal (from employees / contractors) and external (from suppliers) expenditures. Purchase orders ensure that the specified purchase will be paid and provides fine-tuned control of expenditures. For example, if an employee wants to spend $1,000 on a new laptop, he/she submits a request or PO to his/her boss specifying the exact dollar amount required and the purpose.

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