Changes are here!
Travel and Expense Steering Committee recommendations accepted
After extensive consultation and review, recommendations have been approved to the travel and expense business claims procedures.
Highlights of the approved recommended changes include:
- Users will no longer be required to send in paper receipts — rather, receipts can simply be uploaded to Concur (the University’s travel and expense management tool);
- Airfare can be booked using the UM travel credit card with booking agents of choice, rather than only through Concur;
- Users have more flexibility in airfare types;
- Per diem rates have been increased.
The improvements are the result of a full review and large-scale, multi-stakeholder engagement process, begun in Sept. 2016 by a Travel and Expense Steering Committee convened by Provost and Vice-President (Academic) Janice Ristock.
The Committee’s extensive work involved a robust review and stakeholder engagement process that included:
- Over 630 responses to faculty and staff survey; 55 percent from faculty.
- A dedicated project webpage where university community members could follow updates, read related reports and provide anonymous feedback.
- Two hundred additional feedback forms were received through the travel [dot] review [at] umanitoba [dot] ca feedback address or by direct feedback to Steering Committee members or the project manager.
- Select in-person consultations/focus group meetings were held with:
- The U of M Deans’ and Directors’ Council
- U of M Faculty Association (UMFA) President and Executive Director
- Staff and faculty
- Departmental Councils
- Review of Concur data and other travel and expense management practices from across the country.
The committee consisted of seven faculty members and the University Comptroller and was chaired by Kelley Main, head and associate professor of marketing, Asper School of Business. It met eight times from September 2016 to June 2017. Interim recommendations were approved in April and included changes to hospitality approval and the ability to use a mix of per diems and actual receipts in an expense claim.
The committee presented its final report in June 2017 and the recommendations to improve travel booking and expense management were approved.
“We look forward to the implementation of these changes and would like to acknowledge the thoughtful and thorough work of Dr. Main and the Travel and Expense Steering Committee,” said Ristock.
She also notes that the committee has agreed to meet again in about 18 months to review the impact of the recommendations and to determine whether there are other opportunities for improvement.
The recommended procedure takes effect Wednesday, December 13 and is available on the governance website. A summary of the changes can be found here [PDF].