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Travel Refresher Policy Review and Best Practices.

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Presentation on theme: "Travel Refresher Policy Review and Best Practices."— Presentation transcript:

1 Travel Refresher Policy Review and Best Practices

2 Why are we here? eTravel System enhancements Pre-travel policy / best practices Pre-travel exercises Post-travel policy / best practices Questions and discussion

3 eTravel System Workflow changes Greater edit functions Ad-hoc approvals

4 Workflow Changes The traveler is now the last step in the reimbursement approval process UNIV – Initiator  Approver  Traveler OSP – Initiator  Approver  OSP  Traveler OSP no longer releases the voucher. Denial is necessary. Travelers may experience a slight “delay” in receiving approval notification Money in bank within days of approval Travel in system will match GL

5 Approver Edit Functions Business Managers may now edit some fields without denying and returning to initiator: Business purpose Dates/times of travel Chartfields (except org and projects) Max amount approved Percent

6 Ad-hoc Approvals Chair approval for faculty travel can be obtained via ad-hoc approvals similar to HRA  Streamlined approvals  Date/time stamped Contact Robin to have your Chair added as ad-hoc approvers Best practice!

7 Pre-travel Policy Compliance Pre-Travel  Authorization and Business Purpose  Business travel, personal time and alternate locations  Mileage vs. flying  Cost comparisons  Prepayments and cash advances

8 General Overview  An individual is considered in travel status when traveling on University business whether or not expenses are to be paid by the University.  University travelers should incur the lowest reasonable travel expenses and exercise care to avoid impropriety and/or the appearance of impropriety. What does this mean? Business purpose should answer who, what, why and how the travel benefits the College and University. Documentation should be available to support the business purpose and be included with the pre-travel. Ex: Conference registration info, invitation letters, etc. Any pre-travel support including the travel worksheet should be uploaded to the travel system.

9 Authorization  Approval for University business travel and its estimated costs must be documented prior to the trip and available for audit and review.  The University will pay for reasonable and necessary expenses incurred by faculty, staff, students and eligible guests for authorized business travel on behalf of the University. What does this mean? Business purpose AND estimated costs must be approved prior to the travel dates. Signature (physical or electronic) AND date is required. Faculty must have department chair approval for both Univ and OSP travel. Approval should be uploaded to the travel system as part of the pre- travel support.

10 Business travel, personal time and alternate locations  Travel will only be paid when expenses are incurred at locations specific to the business purpose. Travel expenses to and from alternate vacation destinations while on business travel are not eligible for payment.  Any cost variances in expenses due to the addition of vacation time must be clearly identified and documented. What does this mean? Cost comparisons must be done prior to travel and should be done at the same time the travel is booked. Prepayments for flights including personal time are not allowable unless a cost comparison is done at time of booking showing no difference or less expense than business-only time. Prepayments for flights including alternate destinations should not be considered.

11 What does this mean? Cost comparisons must be documented prior to the travel approval and uploaded as part of the pre-travel support. A mileage log with odometer readings, dates, destination and business purpose or other supporting documentation such as a Map Quest is required. Mileage versus Flying  Mileage will be reimbursed in the travel system for vehicles as a primary mode of transportation if the cost does not exceed the least expensive airfare.  Additional expenses, including but not limited to hotel expenses and per diem should be considered when comparing the cost of the trip by auto to airfare.

12 UNIV  Cost comparison is required when travel includes personal time, driving versus flying, or alternate, non-business departure/destination sites.  No cost comparison for any of the above = exception. OSP  A cost comparison is NOT required for travel including personal time with RT ticket purchased to/from the business destination.  A cost comparison IS required for travel including alternate, non- business departure/destination sites. Cost comparison must be done prior to travel. Failure to do so may result in prorated reimbursement. Cost Comparisons

13 Prepayments An approved T# is required before any payments can be made Cash Advances Should be determined during the cost estimation process and should be done prior to any money being expended. Should not be used as a pre-trip reimbursement tool. Prepayments & Cash Advances

14 A faculty member approaches you today and informs you she is going to Paris, France for a conference where she is presenting a talk. She would like to use her start-up funds (UNIV) for the travel and she would like to have the airfare prepaid. She tells you she needs to depart on January 11 and return January 19. According to the conference website, the dates of the conference are January Scenario #1

15 A group of four graduate students are attending a conference in Philadelphia. They plan to drive together in one of the student’s cars and share two hotel rooms between the four of them. The conference dates are February and they would all like to have their conference registrations prepaid. Scenario #2

16 A faculty member has a research update meeting with his sponsors in Tampa, FL on March 11. He plans to fly to Orlando on Friday, March 7, and spend the weekend there for personal time. He will then rent a car and drive to the meeting on March 10 and back to Orlando on March 12, where he will resume his vacation. He will return to Columbus on Sunday, March 16. Scenario #3

17 Post-travel Policy Compliance Post-Travel  Airfare  Hotel  Meals  Car Rental  Miscellaneous expenses  Cash Advances  Required Documentation

18 Post-Travel Responsibilities Travel Initiator  Organizes the documentation and ensures that the COE Travel Worksheet is completed in its entirety.  Combines the COE Travel Worksheet, supporting documentation, original receipts, and travel approval into one travel reimbursement file for the Business Manager.  Leaves the interpretation of policy to the BOC to ensure consistency across the College.  Provides all documentation to the Business Manager for review. Business Manager  Provides a cursory review of the travel reimbursement.  Does not need to recalculate every transaction.

19  Reimbursements of documented travel expense is based on reasonable and actual expense supported by original, itemized receipts where required. Receipts must show method of payment and that payment was made.  All business related travel expenses paid with University funds must comply with the University’s Expenditure, Pcard/Travel Card, Internal Control, Purchasing, and Human Resources policies. What does this mean? Credit card statements and canceled checks are required for OSP travel expenses and/or when an original paid receipt is not available. Reimbursements that exceed 20% of the original estimate need additional approval from the department designated approver. Reimbursements

20 Rental Cars  OSU contract with preferred vendors includes the required insurances. No additional insurance will be reimbursed.  Both the receipt and executed rental agreement are required.  DW/CDW/LDW and liability insurance must be purchased when using non-contract vendors.  Use of contracted vendors without contracted pricing is an exception and may result in reduced reimbursement. What does this mean? Documentation must show the University contract number. Use of a rental vehicle as the primary mode of transportation is authorized only if driving is more economical than any other type of transportation or the destination is not otherwise accessible. A cost comparison must be provided.

21 Personal Meal Allowance (Per Diem)  Per diem is determined by meal eligibility for each day.  Per diem will be reduced for meals served by airlines, included in conference registration, built into the hotel room rate, or replaced by a business meal.  Per diem rates include incidental expenses such as tips, housekeeping, porters, in-room safes, etc.  Reduced per diem is a reduced daily amount set by the department prior to the travel, is consistent for each day, and is based on meal eligibility.  Travelers may be reimbursed for actual meal expenses up to the per diem amount and based on meal eligibility. Receipts are NOT required. What does this mean? Generally, travelers are eligible for up to 75% of per diem on travel days. Additional documentation required to facilitate per diem reimbursements includes airfare and conference itinerary. Special diets must be documented with the College and a blanket exception approved for “provided meals.”

22 Miscellaneous Expenses  Miscellaneous expenses-must have a business purpose for each item reimbursed.  Foreign transactions fees are reimbursable with documentation, i.e. credit card statement, and will be pro-rated to actual business expenses.  Foreign transaction fees for ATM withdrawals are not reimbursable.  Gasoline receipts are required for any dollar amount.

23 Thank you! Quick Links: Travel Policy: Expenditure Policy: state.edu/FileStore/PDFs/411_Expenditures.pdfhttp://www.busfin.ohio- state.edu/FileStore/PDFs/411_Expenditures.pdf BOC Website: Questions?


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