Transaction import from Wells Fargo paused. Please visit our status page for more details and to subscribe to updates.

Exploring Analytics and Insights in Expensify

Tom Rhys JonesTom Rhys Jones Expensify Team Posts: 4 Expensify Team

Hey there Expensify Community, Tom from Expensify’s Growth team here.

We’re working on revamping our in-app Analytics functionality. When scoping out new features we believe it’s important to incorporate feedback from the community to help shape the final output. I’d be keen to gather your thoughts on the questions you’re looking to answer when reviewing expenses, what insights/information you need to answer them and how you’d like these insights to be visualised.

Here are some questions to kick-off the pondering:

  • Do you use Expensify: As a free user, as an employee / manager with your company, as part of the finance team?

  • What questions are you trying to answer about your spend, or your employees’ spend, within Expensify?

  • What information, if any, do you need to surface around policy rules? Why is this useful for you, and what does it help you to do?

  • When it comes to breaking down spend, in Expensify terminology, can you rank these in order of importance?

    1. Category
    2. Tag
    3. Merchant
  • Do you think report processing times and age of reports are helpful insights to surface and why?

If there's any other ideas that spring to mind, do feel free to include it in your response as your feedback is greatly appreciated. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Thanks!

5
7 votes

Live feature released! · Last Updated

We released the graphs on the Expenses page. Please review the most recent comment for this information.

«1

Comments

  • JuliaJulia Expensify Customer Posts: 153 Expensify Pro

    "Do you use Expensify: As a free user, as an employee / manager with your company, as part of the finance team?"

    Part of the finance team (specifically accounts payable)

    "What questions are you trying to answer about your spend, or your employees’ spend, within Expensify?"

    At our level (almost 400 employees), we don't do a ton of spend analysis within Expensify. Most of this is completed within a separate budgeting software like board which populates from our Primary accounting software (Microsoft Dynamics).
    From a manager perspective, it is very helpful for them to see their spend 'in progress' or before the month end financial reporting is available

    "What information, if any, do you need to surface around policy rules? Why is this useful for you, and what does it help you to do?"

    We are interested in exception reporting for all expenses that had any kind of violation attached, (either red or yellow). This will help us coach our employees better and gain insight and analytics on where we need to retrain users to use the system

    "When it comes to breaking down spend, in Expensify terminology, can you rank these in order of importance?"

    3- Category

    Unfortunately, with us needing embedded tags, the categories are almost a duplication of what our account tags are. Since we can't implement all the features tied to a category to where we really need them (the tag), it's more of a necessary redundancy to use categories on our end.

    1- Tag

    We have to use embedded tags to make sure the cost centers that different accounts are associated to actually have money budgeted/or the combination is available within our accounting software

    2- Merchant

    As we grow, I can see this being a very valuable insight to easily see so that we can leverage volume discounts with merchants we spend the most with

    Do you think report processing times and age of reports are helpful insights to surface and why?

    yes, the more data we have, the better. Age of reports help us determine training issues like employees not submitting expense reports in a timely manner (we request manual submission as opposed to scheduled submit, otherwise we have way too many reports floating around), or managers who aren't approving them promptly. Processing time is important because we heavily utilize corporate credit cards, and we currently have a very manual process involving sitting on reports for up to 5 days before final approving them to make sure any transactions that import through our CC bank feed end up switching correctly to a CC transaction instead of a reimbursable expense. Processing times could help us determine patterns around which reports take the longest to work fully through the process

    If there's any other ideas that spring to mind, do feel free to include it in your response as your feedback is greatly appreciated. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Thanks!

    I have lots of insights and ideas to share. I'd hate to bore you with too many though that don't match the specific objectives of what your team handles and ultimately tries to accomplish.
    Ultimately, I think Expensify as a whole is at an interesting tipping point where you could really grow by having two different products. You've had great organic growth, but there's a lot left to be desired for larger customers with many users (which I would imagine is ultimately the greatest source of your revenue)
    I think to keep up with the growth and also retain revenue, keep your current Expensify system for individual and small users so you can maintain your organic word of mouth growth. Create and invest in an Enterprise Expensify level account that gives admins and users alike more rich features with greater analytics, more customization, greater controls on what the end user sees, dedicated support team with quicker response times, etc.

  • tylerzolltylerzoll Approved! Accountant Posts: 430 Expensify Champion

    @TRJ_1,

    I mostly report on data out of NetSuite, so I don't do much with reporting from Expensify. Tag & Category are the most important things, we don't really do any reporting from Expensify or within NetSuite based off of the merchant.

    Really the most important thing that I can see would be a more robust loading dock. Being able to set up a template that runs on your account is really helpful. Currently, I believe that the loading dock is restricted to credit card transactions, but if there was a way to expand the scope of the reports there, I think that would meet about 90% of my needs.

  • jkthomas83jkthomas83 Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    I'm currently using it as a free user, mainly for my personal tracking of my spending, along with the fact that site supports multiple currencies. This is a great benefit, as that I live full-time in Germany, but get paid in USD, but my spending is done in EUR and USD.

    I found the fact that the site gave you the options to see various analytics was very useful as I am on a tight monthly budget. I was able to see what I was spending on and how I could cutback on various expenses, or what I was able to spend a little bit more on. I have been able to keep my spending levels balanced out every month. If this function isn't something that would be offered any longer, I have no real use for the site. The categories and analytics are great functions, which should be returned.

  • sk10170sk10170 Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    I would like to have a report that submitters can look at to see what has been marked as reimbursable in a report. If there are reimbursable and non reimbursable expenses on the same report you have to look at each item to see if the reimburseable is checked. Is there already some way to do that?

  • JuliaJulia Expensify Customer Posts: 153 Expensify Pro

    OK, so another post brought me back here. I didn't realize that the charts/analysis were taken away within the reports section.

    The way that we used this section was actually a HUGE selling point for Expensify, so I'm miffed that it's gone now. This gave our managers easy to use tools to see how their direct reports were spending in (almost) real time, as opposed to being reactionary and getting analysis reports/tools after we close our month end financials.

    This was also a tool we were going to have our managers use in order to lessen the amount of reports and frequency of submissions. (rather than submitting every week, once or twice a month for corporate credit card users). By having access to this analysis and reports for easy tracking on unsubmitted expenses, this allowed them to relinquish some of the control they needed in seeing their reports submitted more frequently to keep on top of any budget issues/concerns.

  • thelordsmurfthelordsmurf Expensify Customer Posts: 9 Expensify Newcomer

    I'm with JK Thomas83. I use Expensify mainly to keep track of personal finance. The ability to track expenditures by category and tag made it easy to make sure the budget was working well, the credit card bills were right, etc. I definitely agree that without that, the use of the site is severely diminished, and the fact that this was changed without notice and without a replacement in place is somewhat concerning. While you all are thinking about improvements, can you leave the previous tools in place?
    Category, then tag, then merchant
    No to the reports part, not used much by me.
    Again, any chance you can leave the old tools in place while you work on new ones?
    Thanks!

  • IOTAdminIOTAdmin Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    You need that reporting functionality back for this to be even slightly useful to a manager trying to see how and what their employees are spending on. Are there not any advisers to your company that have an accounting background that could instruct you on what elements are critical for your accounting users ?

  • thelordsmurfthelordsmurf Expensify Customer Posts: 9 Expensify Newcomer

    In the meantime, is there a way to export transactions to excel?

  • polexapolexa Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    General comments:
    I was using the graph features to analyze overall spending, in categories and over time. I'm really confused and frustrated that this is completely gone now.

    It seems almost as if there's no point for me in having categories if I can't see spending analysis visually?

    Do you use Expensify:
    As a free user

    What questions are you trying to answer about your spend, or your employees’ spend, within Expensify?
    I'm trying to analyze overall spending trends by category to match up with budgeting

    What information, if any, do you need to surface around policy rules? Why is this useful for you, and what does it help you to do?
    I don't use this

    When it comes to breaking down spend, in Expensify terminology, can you rank these in order of importance?

    1 Category
    2 Tag
    3 Merchant

    Do you think report processing times and age of reports are helpful insights to surface and why?
    I don't currently use this metadata around reports

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,315 Expensify Team

    Thank you so much for contributing to this discussion, it's wonderful for us to receive this insight into how our customers used this feature. We'll be sure to keep this thread updated with any new information regarding the in-app Analytics functionality as it becomes available.

    Although the graphs themselves have been removed, you can still filter by category and tag, then export your expenses to a spreadsheet from the Expenses page. (below)

    Cheers!

  • DaveweezDaveweez Expensify Customer Posts: 146 Expensify Aficionado
    edited November 2017

    @Sheena Trepanier I still have the graphs on my account. Wierd.

    @TRJ_1
    Do you use Expensify: As a free user, as an employee / manager with your company, as part of the finance team?
    I am an employee, manager, & admin on the finance team

    Do you think report processing times and age of reports are helpful insights to surface and why?
    These reports would be most helpful for me - in order to coach slow approvers and nudge them along

    Lastly, being able to run reports & analysis for the entire company (not just my expenses) would be helpful as Admin.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,315 Expensify Team

    Hi @Daveweez - The roll out of the new page is currently in a soft launch phase, which means it isn't fully rolled out to all Expensify accounts at this time. If you're not seeing the new expense page but would like to make the switch now, I can help with that, just let me know.

  • DaveweezDaveweez Expensify Customer Posts: 146 Expensify Aficionado
  • tylerzolltylerzoll Approved! Accountant Posts: 430 Expensify Champion

    @Sheena Trepanier I would love to have the new reports page in our account as well.

  • thelordsmurfthelordsmurf Expensify Customer Posts: 9 Expensify Newcomer

    Dear Sheena, if the new page is in soft roll out, is there a way I can request to go back until a new analytics solution is made?

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,315 Expensify Team

    Good morning! There is not a way to revert back to the old expense page, sorry about that.

  • MakamizzleMakamizzle Expensify Customer Posts: 3 Expensify Newcomer

    Do you use Expensify: As a free user, as an employee / manager with your company, as part of the finance team?
    Paid user, but for personal use, not business.

    What questions are you trying to answer about your spend, or your employees’ spend, within Expensify?

    How much of my money is going where each month; I'm using it for personal budgeting & finances. Please give me my analytics graphs/charts back; it was one of the two reasons I picked Expensify over other services/apps.

    When it comes to breaking down spend, in Expensify terminology, can you rank these in order of importance?

    High: Category
    Med: Tag
    Low: Merchant

    Do you think report processing times and age of reports are helpful insights to surface and why?
    Yes, but not for me on a personal level. From a business standpoint, having at least the processing time as a quantifiable measurement of how long it will take an accounting-type employee to make it through the reports would help in identifying workflow issues and inefficiencies in billing/accounting processes.

  • MarcheloMarchelo Expensify Customer Posts: 2 Expensify Newcomer

    I am feeling disappointed that the new Expensify did not support the analytic graph. I have used Expensify since 2010/2011. It has helped me to record and manage my personal expenses. The graphic chart is really helpful to analyze my personal spending trends and categories. Hence in the future I will be able to anticipate the spending trends, as well as manage my spending better.

    So far, Expensify has done a good job in recording and tracking personal expenses. I think the mobile app version could be better and has analytic features. And please bring back the analytic graph.

  • GPV1GPV1 Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    The format change has me ready to leave. I am an admin for a group of about 5 users. We are a non profit and were so encouraged to find an app where we could all submit expenses/receipts and then I could quickly analyze the organizations' expenses as a whole with your charts.

    Then you took away the charts. You also seemingly took away my ability to see category summaries for "All Submitters". Frankly, this is the whole reason why we were going to use it for the long haul.

    It wasn't broke so why the need to fix it? To be honest, if it stays this way for much more then a week then we will be discontinuing our subscription as it really does not serve much of a purpose anymore. My hope is that you restore it to the way it was, and quickly, as it is an extremely frustrating and major change.

    Thanks.

  • tylerzolltylerzoll Approved! Accountant Posts: 430 Expensify Champion

    @GPV1 & @Marchelo , Having been an Expensify user for almost 3 years now, they really do make improvements that are far better than what you had before. For me, the charts and graphs were pretty useless because they didn't actually give us an accurate view into our spending as an organziation. What do you use for a connection to Expensify? Usually that is a better place to get insight into spending. I really believe there are better features coming that will be much better than the old pie chart.

  • MarcheloMarchelo Expensify Customer Posts: 2 Expensify Newcomer
    edited November 2017

    @tylerzoll , I think the charts are useful to review and analyze my personal expenses. Hopefully, Expensify is really making better improvements than what we had before, and they don't take too much time to launch the new features. Me and @GPV1 can't wait too long.

  • tylerzolltylerzoll Approved! Accountant Posts: 430 Expensify Champion

    @marchelo, I understand. I've been frustrated a time or two when a feature gets cut or something changes. One of the main reasons why we stay with Expensify is because they aren't afraid to crack some eggs to make omelets. Reporting is one of the things that can really be improved in Expensify. At the current moment, you can always export to a CSV and make a chart that way.

  • icevipergticevipergt Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    Hi. Why new Expensify did not support the charts? I use Expensify for personal spending trends from 2014. Charts is really helpful to analyze my expense. Please bring back the charts.

  • rainemaker1rainemaker1 Expensify Customer Posts: 3 Expensify Newcomer

    I am a sole proprietorship with no employees. I don't need to reimburse anyone or even make reports. The new REPORTS tab is so UNHELPFUL. I need just the basics, like EXPENSES, RECEIPTS, ADMIN. That's it. I need the Charts and Graphs function to see what I am spending my business expenses on. If I don't have that anymore, then I can't really use Expensify for what I need it to do for me. I do not want to mess around with REPORTS of any kind, and I want my account to revert back to how it was before the update.

  • gnicolignicoli Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    I have been a free user since 2013 and have picked Expensify over all others because of the tags, and charts options. I cannot comprehend why they would remove such functions which are distinctive advantages over competitors. I'll use the service for a few more months and start looking for alternatives in the meantime.

    If their logic is to revamp/upgrade it, surely they can do their background development work without taking away these functions. It just baffles me. Please, please, please bring charts back or I'm sure hoards of other users like me who don't want to go will be out the door...

    As a side note, I might just suggest that introducing charts on the mobile version of the app would be a fabulous idea too. Ordinary users don't want rocket science - i don't want to export data and fiddle around in Excel to get data Expensify used to show with 2-3 clicks before. Thank you.

  • ShouTimeShouTime Expensify Customer Posts: 1 Expensify Newcomer

    Roll us back to having analytics or will cancel using your service

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,315 Expensify Team

    Good evening everyone, thank you so much for sharing some truly valuable feedback on the new Expense page.

    We believe the new design will help us to streamline how customers manage their expenses, but also understand that not all use cases are the same. We have collected feedback from dozens of companies of all sizes and shapes, and found that some sort of analytic functionality is pretty popular.

    Our team is working on releasing some analytic functionality back to the Expense page, and we expect it to be a nice balance between information overload and not enough information.

    As I have more information about the new tools and the timeline for when to expect their release, I'll reach out on this thread and keep everyone informed.

    Again, thank you so much for taking the time to join the community and contribute to the growth of Expensify.

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Expensify Success Coach - Admin Posts: 1,315 Expensify Team

    Hello everyone! I wanted to update you that we have implemented some analytic functionality into the new Expense page.

    At the top right of the Expense page, where the view options are located, you should see a fourth graph option now. Clicking this option will show you a pie graph and category totals that you can analyze and export as needed. (Below)​



    Have a great week!

  • ADAMBETADAMBET Expensify Customer Posts: 2 Expensify Newcomer
This discussion has been closed.