Concur Web App Offers Seamless, Integrated Tracking of Travel Expenses for Flatiron Businesses
- Tod Shapiro
- On November 27, 2015
Reported by the Flatiron Hot! News Editorial Staff
Flatiron is the home of many cutting-edge tech companies that are on the leading edge of the use of cloud-based services to streamline their core business functions, so it was with great interest that I attended a seminar down at the Palm Restaurant on West Street to discuss the benefits of the “Concur” web application. Concur is the the brainchild of two entrepreneurs who came up with a nifty web solution to the cumbersome problem of employees getting reimbursed for their travel expenses while on the road. It is a miracle of web-based innovation. Companies of all sizes can set up an account for their on-the-go employees and completely automate and streamline the process of collecting their workers expenses. The formerly
tedious process of your HR department nagging the staff, and collecting physical receipts and proof of expenses, and submitting a corporate expense reimbursement form, submitting to accounts payable, getting authorizations, and finally submitting and cutting reimbursement checks is completely automated! One simply uses a mobile phone or tablet app, or a browser-based interface, to record and track the expenses as they are made real-time on the road whether in a cab, a restaurant, hotel, or store, which categorizes and records the expense in a painless manner. The key part – for me at least – is the use of the hi-rez camera on your mobile device to take a quick pic of the receipt right when you get it, at the table or at the checkout counter at your hotel. The Concur app uses OCR technology to scan and recognize the amount, the credit card, the line-item description, and the vendor, and immediately transcribes and posts it to the relevant transaction in your Concur account. When you get back, or even before, Concur will organize and file your report in the appropriate format and forward it to your boss and AP department – via the web and cloud of course – its that simple!
This being the age of cloud services, all sorts of rules and regulations can be associated with your Concur profile, such that targeted and budgeted amounts, either requiring additional approvals or subject to strict caps, can be enforced or brought to your attention as you go along. In fact, if your company takes the time to use the services features, you can have the Concur application make suggestions or help select the best flights, purchases, or deals through those vendors and companies that are integrated into the Concur back end. For hospitality-based businesses such as NYCSCC and other restaurants and hotels, one might have their charges for their patrons and appropriate receipts and confirmations, as they pay, immediately forwarded and collated via their Concur accounts – really useful and cool stuff!
The venue for the seminar couldn’t be beat – the new Palm Restaurant on West Street – a stone’s throw from the new World Trade Center and Ground Zero, where I took a quick stroll after the event to check things out. By the way, the Palm’s new decor is really cool – check out the custom illustrations of many of the
recent patrons at the place – including some of your favorite cartoon characters – that would be Batman and Robin, and Pogo and his friends! I enjoyed a terrific working business lunch, complete with a choice of seafood or steak, with the appropriate side dishes. I had a chance to confer with the Concur sales team, who were great in answering my questions. I also had a good opportunity to network with some fellow hospitality and travel professionals, who were likewise interested in these kinds of services. Thanks for the time and chow, Concur!
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