Employers have long monitored the activities of their employees within the workplace, but for mobile employees, the “workplace” becomes a lot larger. These kinds of employees are making up more of the workforce in the US every year, especially within healthcare. If you’re a hospice care provider, for example, the workplace suddenly constitutes not only every home your employees visit, but the vehicles they drive to reach each location.
If your organization employs workers who make home visits, or you employ traveling salespeople or contractors who are always out in the field throughout the day, how do you monitor the activities of these employees? You need a method of determining where employees are going, what trips and stops their making and their trip mileage when it comes time to reimburse them.
The GPS-Based Employee Location Tracking App
Most apps on the market today rely on GPS technology your smartphone already uses to track employees throughout the day. This can be helpful if you want to know exactly where an employee is at a given moment in the day, but using a GPS system to track employee trips and mileage has several setbacks.
Most of these employee location tracking apps rely on the employee to decide when data is recorded. This means that can opt to have these apps track their travel even when it’s not job-related. Perhaps, during your review of employee expense reports, you’ll notice an errant trip submitted by an employee, but parsing out the work-related from the non work-related travel becomes more difficult when employees decide to take a detour during travel to a work location for personal reasons. Should they decide to run errands between home visits and routinely charge you for this travel, GPS-based apps won’t alert you this habit, and over time, the costs will start to add up.
Some of the employee location tracking app options don’t even allow employees to track mileage for the reason of expense reports. These GPS-based apps may simply use the technology to see where employees are at in the field and track work times, ensuring they’re clocking in at the appropriate locations. This means employees will still need to use a mileage log of some kind to record odometer readings if your business intends to reimburse them. Mileage logs are notoriously flawed, allowing employees to estimate mileage, round up totals or fabricate trips altogether.
Alternative to GPS: Point-to-Point Calculations
Calculating trips from a starting to an ending location is a reliable, simple solution to the persisting problems associated with reporting mileage expenses. Employees enter the address of the location they’re at and the location they’re heading to, and the system will determine the mileage for the most direct route. At no point will employees need to record mileage that managers must try to verify after the fact.
This method for determining trip mileage for reimbursement is more accurate and gives both you and your employees more visibility into the process. If they decide to take a detour to run by the bank or drop their kids off at school, it won’t affect the mileage of the trip in any way. Should you ever be audited by the IRS, you will be confident your records contain no IRS-disallowed travel.
Of course, sometimes you have to deviate from your route due to road closures and other unforeseen events. In those cases, employees should be able to report the change in route. The goal is to always have an accurate report of mileage reimbursements including when, what and why you issued each payment.
What CompanyMileage Has in Store for You
If you’re looking for some kind of employee location tracking app, you’ll find that each option on the market has been designed to achieve a specific goal. Hopefully, it’s the same as your goal. SureMileage by CompanyMileage was developed to tackle the mileage reimbursement process for everyone from home healthcare workers to pizza delivery guys – anyone whose employees use their personal vehicles for work-related travel.
As employees travel from location to location, our system automates and streamlines the normally time-consuming process of tracking mileage expenses.
Address Book: The master list of all of your job sites can be imported into our system, saving your employees time looking up addresses for trip reports. Employees will only have access to the addresses they’re permitted to see.
Quick Capture: This feature allows employees to quickly submit their geo-location at each new address they arrive at with just the touch of a button, along with the date and time of the entry. At the end of the workday, they can review the list of captured locations and add any trips the missed earlier in the day. The coordinates of each captured location are compared to those in your address book, and employees can select the one they visited to use on their trip form. Quick Capture significantly reduces the amount of time employees spend each day managing their mileage and trip expenses.
Automated Approvals: All expense reports submitted through the app are automatically sent through the approval process, tailored to your company’s specific needs and structure. Once a trip has been approved, accounting can issue a reimbursement. SureMileage integrates with all major accounting and payroll systems, further streamlining the process.
CompanyMileage delivers a system that solves the many issues of using a GPS-based employee location tracking app to determine employees’ work-related mileage reimbursement. To discover what else we have in store for your company, schedule a demo with us today.