The IRS has strict rules for what needs to be included in mileage logs. Each log should include the number of miles driven, the destinations of those trips, the date and time of each trip taken, and the business purpose of each expedition. For one trip, that’s easy, but for hundreds or even thousands of trips, it’s a lot to keep track of. However, even with these formal IRS mileage tracking requirements, how you actually go about logging all of this information is up to you.
Luckily, there are a number of technological tools out there ready and waiting to make tracking mileage efficient and easy, including mileage tracking apps and digital mileage logs. Instead of depending on outdated analog options, using the right technology can help you meet IRS mileage tracking requirements and save you time and resources, too!
The Benefits of Throwing Out Your Old Mileage Logs
Until recently, paper trip logs were the primary method used by mobile employees looking for the best way to meet irs mileage tracking requirements. Manual logs are pretty easy to use if you remember how to hold a pen, and not dependent on any kind of technology. However, paper trip logs aren’t always the best method for maximum efficiency or accuracy—which, believe it or not, could land you in hot water come tax season. Paper records are easy to lose, damage, or forget completely.
Instead, it might be time to bring your thinking—and your trip logs—into the 21st century by digitizing the mileage tracking process. Your records and your employees will thank you. Here are some benefits you’re likely to see if you decide to automate mileage tracking:
Track and Record Mileage in Real Time
Taking time to manually fill out reports and log mileage can be frustrating and time-consuming for employees, and for their managers. By automating the mileage tracking process, you can reduce the stress and annoyance you and employees face when it comes time to track mileage for tax purposes.
A good mileage tracking app allows employees to log the distance they travel for work when the trip happens. Real-time tracking negates the need to keep up with odometer readings for records and logs. Automatic, digital tracking will also reduce the slip-ups and mistakes that can occur when manually entering data.
Catch Errors Before they Become a Problem
Even if some errors do manage to slip through when logging mileage, automated mileage logs ensure that any mistakes get caught before they actually become an issue. The ideal mileage tracking software can notify managers and supervisors when employees exceed daily per diems. Some mileage logging technology can also flag certain behaviors, like submitting duplicate expense reports, and notify managers and supervisors when this behavior occurs.
Tech that can catch errors, slipups and unusual behavior can also help your organization with fraud prevention. According to the 2022 Report to the Nations released by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, expense fraud can go on for months to years without being detected. It’s the third most common form of employee fraud! Having the right technology in place with the ability to detect behaviors or patterns can help catch fraudulent activity early, reducing the harm it causes in the long run.
Receive Helpful Insights into Employees’ Time Management
What do your mobile employees get up to when they’re out and about performing their jobs? No employee wants to feel like their employer or supervisor is breathing down their neck, but as their employer you deserve to have an accurate conception of how they spend their time. The perfect mileage tracking technology lets you see how much time employees spend driving, as well as how much time they spend at every location they visit, so you can confirm that they’re spending the workdays the way you expect them to.
However, having an automated, impartial record of how much time employees spend at the locations they frequent also gives you—and them!—opportunities for growth. Analyzing concrete time management reports produced through automation might reveal places where your employee’s schedule could be changed or reorganized to reduce any issues they might run into in their workdays.
Embrace Convenience with Electronic Storage
Who’s afraid of the big bad audit? You are, if you’re smart! The IRS has strict rules regarding travel expenses. It’s vital that you abide by the IRS Accountable Plan and maintain accurate records of all expense reports and reimbursements. Otherwise, all company reimbursements will be taxed as wages.
To avoid the ire of the IRS, it’s vital to prove an audit trail. This is an especially difficult process to approach manually. However, with digital mileage logging, meeting IRS mileage tracking requirements in the face of an audit becomes a lot more doable. Web-based solutions let employees easily submit expense reports for approval, and give administration and management complete visibility throughout the process. Vitally, digital solutions to mileage logging mean that all necessary information is readily accessible in one centralized location. No risk of coffee-stained paper forms getting lost in the shuffle there!
Make Trip Logs Easy with CompanyMileage
If you’re looking for a solution that will help your organization meet IRS mileage tracking requirements, look no further. CompanyMileage and our suite of mobile workforce applications, SureMobile, SureMileage, and SureExpense, gives business owners an organized, accurate system for logging employee mileage.
SureMileage, our mileage reimbursement software, allows employees to report their starting and ending points, and the system independently calculates the most direct driving route between them, and from there the expenses to be reimbursed. Once reports have moved through an automated workflow, our software integrates smoothly with your accounting or payroll systems.
Change the way you face IRS mileage tracking requirements by requesting a demo with CompanyMileage today!