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How To Create Your Company’s First Expense Policy

Posted by Early Growth

August 10, 2016    |     3-minute read (526 words)

Expenses Happen, Policies Take Planning

What goes into a successful expense policy? How can having one be as simple as possible and maximize ROI for each dollar spent? What culture building possibilities get communicated through the choices you make?

All of that and more are reviewed in this informative and useful webinar with Early Growth Financial Services Consultant CFO, Sirk Roh as he’s joined by Omar Qari, Cofounder of Abacus, which provides flexible and intelligent expense reporting.

View the webinar recording here, or read more in the recap further below:



Omar Qari

  • “What is the kind of company policy beyond that you want to have? What is the type of environment you want to create for your employees? Expense thresholds really stick out to me because this is a great opportunity to do yourself and your employees a favor by not requiring receipts below a certain amount if you know you're looking to move quickly as an organization.” 
  • “A really good opportunity is to have a system in place that can either fill in some of those details for you; Abacus can predict what the category is or the account so that we can fill that in for you.”
  • Know all of that factors that go into the ROI of pursuing a client; those types of strategic business decisions are very much informed by data collection. 
  • “I like to recommend to follow this 'Goldilocks' principle when it comes to expense policies: you don't want it to be so strict that employees have a terrible experience and don't submit for a really long but at the same time you don't want it to be so loose that you can't measure the kind of insights that are important to you.”

Sirk Roh

  • You need to make sure that the expenses that are being incurred, the expenses that you are reimbursing to your employees meet IRS requirements. It needs to be an ordinary expense and necessary expense that can be substantiated 
  • “If you're fair and consistent and you have a concise new set of rules in place for everyone in the organization, then that goes a long way towards getting a lot of buy-in from the entire organization.” 
  • Expense costs are one of the more manageable cost centers a company can control

Topic Timestamps

How to create your company’s first expense policy (0:00)


Sirk Roh Consultant CFO at EGFS & Omar Qari co-founder Abacus (1:26)

Introduction tracking and managing employee expenses (4:35)

Federal and state laws (5:20)

IRS publication 535 a deductible expanses guideline (5:40)

6 key elements to utilize in creating the plan (9:42)

Expectations and creating guidance

Outlining Rules and exceptions (15:15)

Examples of some expense policy rules (20:30)

Managing expenses: Financial reporting, taxes, and the bottom line. (25:30)

Properly kept records will be one of your biggest allies in the event of an audit (25:50)

Checks and balances (30:00)

Policy enforcement (34:40)

Build out the reports you need: Monitor cash, Spending trends & ROI reporting (38:50)

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