Webexpenses’ survey makes a media splash

Webexpenses’ latest survey has been hitting the headlines - including the world’s biggest news site.

The eye-opening findings, revealing that one-in-four employees admit to ‘bending the rules’ when making their expense claims, have been reported by dozens of media outlets.

The statistics are the result of research commissioned by webexpenses to help gain a better understanding of a problem which is still largely hidden within the business world.

With prosecutions rare and a business culture which has traditionally been reluctant to tackle the issue, the true scale of expense fraud has always been difficult to accurately gauge.

The webexpenses survey, involving more than 1,000 UK employees, showed that not only do 26 percent admit to expenses fraud but one-in-five of them said they did not feel guilty.

But perhaps more worrying for businesses was the fact that 70 percent of those questioned said their expense claims had never been rejected or challenged by their finance department.

Webexpenses chairman Michael Richards said the results showed a need for a more vigilant approach. He said:

“Based on our findings, it is clear that UK companies may need to look more closely at their expenses policies and the systems they are using to process claims.

“With almost 50 percent of respondents saying that their company didn’t use computer software to manage expenses, it’s not surprising that some claims are able to slip through the net.”

Here’s a look at how some of various media organisations handled the findings:

MailOnline

With around 11 million daily visitors, this is the most popular news website in the world. They compared the levels of expense abuse revealed in the survey to recent expenses scandals involving UK politicians.

The story attracted a debate among readers in the comments section which includes one defiant message from a user called ‘MissPA’ who stated:

“I sign off the expenses and treat the company money as I would my own. I don't sign off a single receipt unless I cross check it against diary entries and quiz them over anything that looks suspicious. You can't pull a fast one with me.”

Read the full article.

HR magazine

This coverage highlighted the gender gap which was revealed by the survey results. It was found that 28 percent of men admitted making false claims while for female employees it was only 22 percent.

Read the full article.

The Economic Voice

One of the areas focused on here was the disparity between different sectors when it came to levels of expense fiddling. The survey showed arts and culture to have 72 percent of respondents admitting to fraudulent claims while only seven percent for the legal sector.

Read the full article.

Business Today

This coverage includes an interview with webexpenses’ chairman, Michael Richards, who talks about the need for a change in company culture to tackle expenses fraud. He warned about, “a complacent attitude towards expenses by both employers and their employees.”

Read the full article.

More coverage of the survey results can be found here: