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Senior Consultant
GoldSpring Consulting
1164-c La Rochelle Terrace
Sunnyvale California
United States
Kevin's Blog

Strong Policies = Successful Charge Card Management

Posted by Kevin Iwamoto on 24 February 2012 / 11:16 AM 383 Views

It has been my experience that the most successful companies who have pushed change through or achieved goals in strategic meetings management have had policies that:
a - Spelled out processes and procedures that travel and meeting managers could follow

b - Were backed up with senior executive endorsement

c - Were strongly worded and had consequences for noncompliance
Now, a new survey by the Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) and, sponsored by a major card company, which polled 115 managers with responsibility for charge card expenditures, shows that those maxims hold true for good charge card management, too.  In the survey, among those that captured 75% or more spending on the card, nearly 60% had a centralized, standardized global policy implemented across their entire organization, according to a BTN story about the survey.
What's more, at firms that captured the highest spending on their cards, about half of respondents said noncompliance is reported to line managers, and more than 30% said noncompliance results in revoked card privileges. Meanwhile, 20% or so don't reimburse expenses outside policy. On the other side of the coin, the survey said that among companies who captured less of their business travel spending on their cards, about one-third said there were no consequences for not complying with policy.
Clearly the winners in this survey were those who captured the most data, and that data is the prize for tackling wasteful T&E and meetings spend and negotiating better prices with hotels and other suppliers.
Some great tips on how to boost spend capture included in the article:

  • Continuously communicate the benefits the T&E program brings to all stakeholders. The article said that a travel director from a "global 500 company" emphasizes the enhanced safety and security aspect that T&E card usage brings in cases of crisis management, as well as the savings accrued to the company and travelers; (Card spend data is an important part of a Duty of Care program because the data can be used to quickly find employees stuck in an emergency or disaster -- and bring them home.)
  • Get influential senior management to back the program and to help in communicating policy;
  • Integrate T&E cards with other travel tools to increase seamlessness for travelers (For example, integrate a meetings card with strategic meetings management technology -- for payment and reconciliation ease.).

 Are you capturing travel and meetings spend data with your card program? And how is that benefiting your SMMP? Please share here.

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