Alliance Travel _ Expense Policy

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Alliance Travel _ Expense Policy Powered By Docstoc
					                                     Employee Business Expenses
Revised 8_11_04 SC

This policy describes the Company’s business expense report policy and establishes the guidelines,
responsibilities and general practices to be observed when incurring expenses on behalf of the
Company. The policy identifies those expenditures that are generally allowable business expenses
and are thus reimbursable by the Company.

Scope & Responsibilities - In the normal course of business, it may become necessary for employees to
incur expenses while they are conducting Company business. By following the procedures outlined below,
employees can expect to be reimbursed for these business expenses.

This policy applies to all Alliance Consulting employees who travel, entertain, or incur expenses on behalf
of the Company. This policy covers expenses that are billable to our clients as well as expenses that are
the responsibility of the Company.

1. Alliance Consulting employees are responsible for:
                Complying with this policy.
                Using prudent business judgement.
                Reporting any violations of this policy to the CFO for investigation.
                Completing expense reports fully, signing and submitting reports on a timely basis.

2. The approving manager is responsible for:
               Ensuring process is in place such that expenditures are pre-approved in accordance
                  with the Alliance Signature Authorization Document.
               Exercising fiduciary responsibility by approving only those expenses that are in
                  compliance with this policy.
               Validating that expenses are necessary and for the benefit of Alliance.
               Ensuring that billable expenses are properly identified as such.
               Reviewing, approving and documenting such approval by signing the report.

3. Corporate Accounts Payable is responsible for:
               Auditing expense reports to ensure compliance with this policy.
               Reporting non-compliance with this policy to the CFO.
               Processing employee reimbursement in a timely fashion.

Eligible Expenses - Only those expenses incurred for the direct benefit of the Company are eligible for
reimbursement. Employees should refer to Appendix C – Eligible Expenses for specific guidance as to what
constitutes an eligible expense. Additionally, employees can refer to Appendix D – Ineligible Expenses for
a listing of typical expenses that are non-reimbursable.

Reasonableness - For employee business expenses to be reimbursable, the amount of the expenditures
must also be reasonable. What is reasonable is up to the judgment of both the person incurring the
expense and the person approving the expense. In all cases, the employee should obtain the necessary
approval prior to making the expenditure.

Billable Expenses - In some cases, employees will incur expenses directly for the benefit of a client that
we can then bill the client. If the client has their own expense guidelines that differ from those set forth
in this policy, employees will be expected to adhere to the client’s guidelines. If the client mandates the
use of their expense report, employees are authorized to substitute the client expense report.

Employees must not mix billable and non-billable expenses on the same expense report. When billing the
client, a copy of the expense report is typically attached to the invoice. It is inappropriate and confusing
to include non-billable expenses on an expense report sent to a client. Expense reports that include both
billable and non-billable expenses on the same report will be returned to the employee unpaid.
Receipts - A valid receipt is required for all reimbursable expenses. All receipts must be attached to the
expense report when it is submitted. Attachments must be taped, not stapled and be attached in an
organized fashion to enable scanning and presentable submission to clients, as needed. In the event an
original receipt is either lost or not available, the employee’s manager must approve the specific

The Internal Revenue Code requires that reimbursable expenditures are to be supported by adequate
records which clearly establish that they were (1) ordinary and necessary, (2) reasonable in amount and
(3) incurred for a valid business purpose. Therefore, the following information must be provided in order
to qualify for reimbursement:

                   The identity of the vendor must be clearly indicated.
                   The business purpose for the expenditure must be identified clearing outlining bona
                    fide business discussion.
                   The identity and business relationship of those participating in the event covered by
                    the expenditure must be stated.
                   Original itemized receipts must be attached (e.g. itemized hotel bills, airline
                    passenger receipt coupons, travel itineraries, automobile rental invoices, telephone
                    bills) for all expense items. No estimates permitted.

American Express Corporate Card statements and stubs are not considered original receipts and can not be
used to support an expense for reimbursement. Any expense report missing an original receipt will be
short paid. An email will be sent to the employee notifying them of the reason for the short pay.

Reimbursement - Employees must submit an approved Business Expense Report in order to receive
reimbursement. Please refer to Appendix E – Completing an Expense Report for more information about
how to properly fill out an expense report.

The Expense Report is a weekly statement of expenses. All expenses must be recorded on an Expense
Report under the date on which the expense was actually incurred. Expense Reports will be reimbursed
on a weekly cycle as shown on the timeline below.

                   Expense Reports for each week are due on the Friday of the subsequent week. For
                    example, the Expense Report for expenses incurred this week is due by Friday of next
                   Expense Reports received by their due date will be reimbursed during the next week.
                   Reimbursement for Expense Reports received after their Friday due date will be
                    delayed by one reimbursement cycle.
                   In all cases, however, Expense Reports must be submitted for reimbursement within
                    two weeks after their week ending date. Any Expense Report received outside this
                    two-week limit will not be subject to reimbursement.

Expense Report Approval - To the extent that the expenses are incurred for the benefit of the Company
and are in compliance with policy, the Alliance Senior Officer “ASO” (e.g. EVPs, SVPs, AVPs, DORs,
Practice Leaders) must approve the expense report Expenses that are outside of policy must also be
approved by the CFO. ASO expense reports must be approved by the CFO or CEO. An individual may not
approve their own expense report. Expenses over $5,000 which are not billable to a client require a
Second Signature by the CFO.

To the extent that the expenses are incurred for the benefit of a client of the Company for which the
client will be billed, the client must approve the expense report. Employees should not expect to receive
reimbursement unless they have obtained the proper approval.

Travel Authorization - Employees who need to travel on behalf of the Company must complete a
Travel Authorization Form and obtain proper approval prior to making their travel arrangements. The
form is available on Quest under Travel and Expenses in the QuikCliks section. Approvals are as follows:
                  Billable Travel – Employees must complete a Client Travel Authorization Form and
                   obtain the client’s approval for any travel that is billable to the client. For recurring
                   trips with the same client, a blanket approval can be obtained.

                  Non-Billable Corporate Travel – Employees must obtain approval from the EVP, SVP,
                   Chief Executive Officer or CFO for any travel that is not billable to a client. This can
                   be accomplished via emails or by using the Travel Authorization Form. Documented
                   pre-approval must be attached to the expense report when submitted.

                  Non-Billable Field Travel – Employees and consultants must obtain approval from the
                   EVP, SVP, CFO or CEO for any travel that is not billable to a client. This can be
                   accomplished via emails or by using the Travel Authorization Form. Documented pre-
                   approval must be attached to the expense report when submitted.

                  International Travel – Employees must obtain approval from the EVP, SVP, CFO or CEO
                   in advance of such travel.

The approved Travel Authorization Form should be submitted to the corporate travel agency at least 24
hours prior to the date of the trip. However, so as to take advantage of discounted fares, employees are
encouraged to submit the approved Travel Authorization Form at least two weeks in advance of the date
of their trip. The agency will book the trip and forward a copy of the itinerary and the tickets
to the traveler. The travel agency charges a transaction fee of $35 per transaction. For billable
travel, such fees must be passed through to clients.

Employees who prefer to book their own travel may do so but must still obtain proper approval prior to
making their travel arrangements. They must also use their own credit card for payment. Finally, they
must attach the approved Travel Authorization Form to their expense report in order to receive

Credit Cards - The Company will assist employees in applying for an American Express Corporate Card to
employees on an as-needed basis. American Express issues these Corporate Cards to employees based on
their personal credit history. Expense reimbursements will be made to the employees directly and
employees are responsible for payment of the American Express Corporate Card. On an exception basis, a
central corporate card will be used to pay for expenses directly; the employee remains responsible for
timely completion of expense reports and must specify “Paid directly by Alliance” on the expense report.

Employees are responsible for monthly payments and should be aware that untimely payments will affect
their personal credit rating. Failure to pay Corporate Card charges within ninety days will result in the
cancellation of the employee’s Corporate Card. Employees whose cards have been canceled will need to
use their own credit cards for future Company expenditures.

The Company pays the annual Corporate Card fee directly to American Express. The Company will not
reimburse other credit card fees, including late payment fees.

Exceptions - Exceptions to this policy require written approval of the AVP and the Chief Executive Officer
or CFO. Alliance reserves the right to deny reimbursement for any incurred expense that is not in
accordance with this policy. If there is any question as to whether an expense is in accordance with this
policy, the employee should obtain the necessary approval prior to making the expenditure.

Questions - Employees with questions about the Employee Business Expense policy should feel free to
contact their Office Manager or the Controller at our administrative offices in Philadelphia.
Appendix C
                                            Eligible Expenses

This Appendix provides the guidelines for what qualifies as eligible business expenses. While it is meant to
be all-inclusive, employees with questions should contact their Office Manager or the Controller at our
administrative offices in Philadelphia.


    1. Airline Travel
        Employees are expected to reserve the lowest applicable non-refundable coach fare.
        Alternative flights must be selected if the savings exceed $200 and the resulting increased
           travel time is no longer than an hour and a half. Employees traveling more than 50% of the
           time may book direct flights. Alternative flights may include a connecting flight, an earlier
           flight, or use of an alternate airport. Additionally, substituting train travel should also be
           considered as an alternative to flying.
        First class air travel will not be reimbursed. Employees may upgrade through payment or use
           of frequent flier mileage, at their personal expense.
        Employees are strongly encouraged to book air travel two weeks ahead.
        Unused airline tickets are negotiable documents and must be returned for a refund.
           Employees are responsible for notifying the Travel Department of any cancellations or
           changes regarding airline reservations.
        In order to provide overall savings to the Company and a benefit to our employees,
           employees may select a discounted airfare, which requires a Saturday night stay-over. The
           employee will be reimbursed for single hotel room cost and applicable meal expenses, limited
           to the difference between the lowest applicable unrestricted airfare, minus the actual
           discounted airfare. A statement of the lowest applicable airfare, provided by the travel
           agency, should be submitted with the expense report. A calculation of the extra expense
           compared with the reimbursement limitation should also accompany the expense report.
        An employee can change their flight time by simply calling Rose Tours & Travel. If an
           employee needs to change their destination or date of travel, they should contact our travel
           coordinator. If changes are needed after normal business hours, American Express Travel
           Services will assist in making the changes. However, employees will be required to use their
           credit card for any charges associated with after-hours travel changes.

    2. Automobile Rentals
        Automobiles should be rented only when public transportation and taxis are impractical,
          more expensive, or not available and only when traveling out-of-town.
        Vehicles of the compact car class are customary for individual employees. The next size class
          may be rented when two or more employees are traveling together.
        Reimbursable items include the actual cost of the rental, tolls and gasoline purchases.
          Although reimbursable, one-way rentals should be avoided and must be specifically explained
          in the documentation attached to the expense report.
        Employees should refuel prior to returning the rental to avoid the costly refueling fee
          charged by the rental companies.
        Insurance coverage is not a reimbursable item. Employees should decline insurance coverage
          because the Company maintains corporate coverage.
        Only employees are authorized to drive rental vehicles. No relatives, guests or other
          individuals are authorized to drive such vehicles.
        National and Avis are our vendors of choice. We have a national contract with these vendors
          to ensure group discounts. Please contact the travel coordinator to arrange for automobile

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    3. Customer Meals & Entertainment
        It is recognized that business practices and common courtesy sometimes require that gifts
          and entertainment be extended to present or prospective commercial customers. These
          occasions are strictly limited and may not involve secret commissions, hidden gratuities or
          payments to third parties that might have influence on such customers. Alliance Consulting
          employees’ participation in these events must be kept to a minimum. Only those employees
          who have legitimate host responsibilities may attend.
        Gifts and entertainment may be reimbursed if all of the following conditions are met:
               They are consistent within generally accepted ethical and legal standards;
               They are of such limited value and are in such form that they cannot be constructed
                  as a bribe, payoff or deal;
               The customer has not advised it has a policy against or otherwise limits receipt of
                  gifts and entertainment by its employees and agents.
               Entertainment expenses must either directly relate to the conduct of business or
                  occur directly before or after substantial business discussions.

           Criteria for judging entertainment as ordinary and reasonable are:
                 Not lavish: the value of the entertainment is not considered lavish or extravagant
                    and is reasonable for the situation.
                 Specific purpose: the entertainment must have a specific, predetermined business
                 Non-recurring: the entertainment must not be conducted over an extended period of
                    time with the same persons or with different persons from the same organization
                    unless an extended sequence of business transactions is being conducted.
                 Minimum participants: the persons entertained must be restricted to those needed
                    to achieve the business objective.

    4. Long-term Assignments
        When out-of-town on long-term assignments, visits to the employee’s local home are
          reimbursable as follows:
               Fares for trips are reimbursable in accordance with client guidelines, but not more
                 frequently than once per week.
               Employees may fly home or alternatively have a companion fly to his/her location, if
                 the expense is not significantly more.
               Employees are expected to book as far in advance as possible to achieve maximum

    5. Hotels
        Employees must use business-level hotels, such as Holiday Inns, Days Inns, etc.
        Employees should charge hotel bills and incidental hotel charges to their own charge card and
          include reimbursable items on their expense report.
        A single room should be reserved. Suites are acceptable only when the suite accommodation
          is the standard-room-type of the hotel and the cost is consistent with local single room rates.
          At certain Company functions, participants may be required to share rooms with other
          Company personnel.
        Room reservation guarantees are automatically made to the employee’s charge card at the
          time of booking. If the employee is unable to use the reservation, it is the employee’s
          responsibility to cancel either through the approved travel agency or directly with the hotel.
          Most US hotels require that cancellations be made by 4:00 p.m. “No-show” charges are not
        The following types of expenses are considered to be of a personal nature and will not be
                Personal services such as barber, beautician, manicurist, shoeshine and massage;
                Special room services, such as in-room movies; and
                Additional charges for room upgrades or special floors.
                Reimbursable meal and entertainment charges included in the hotel bill must be
                   segregated into the appropriate columns of the expense report.

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    6. Laundry and Dry Cleaning Services
        Employees traveling on Company business and absent from their homes for more than five
          consecutive days are entitled to laundry/valet expenses up to a maximum allowance of $10
          per day beginning on the fifth day.

    7. Business Meals
        Employees are reimbursed for meals and incidentals under the following circumstances:
                 When traveling out-of-town overnight.
                 While working overtime (if working on a weekend, in excess of 4 hours, lunch is
                    reimbursable; if working during the week in excess of 10 hours, dinner is
        Meals with others, including employees in a specialized group meeting and recruits, are
           reimbursable only when:
                 Prior approval is obtained from the ASO;
                 The event is beneficial to the Company, and
                 The event is infrequent and non-recurring.
        Meals, per person, are limited to: Breakfast $10, lunch $15 and dinner $45. Amounts in
           excess will not be reimbursed. These amounts are not cumulative (i.e. you may not skip lunch
           in lieu of a $60 dinner reimbursement).
        A valid receipt evidencing the actual purchase of the meal claimed for reimbursement must
           be submitted with the Expense Report.
        If more than one employee attends a business meal, the senior member of the group should
           pay for the meal and claim the reimbursement.

    8.    Meetings
          The Company will pay or reimburse employees for all valid business meeting expenses. The
            authorizing manager is responsible for ensuring that meeting expenses are valid and
            reasonable and are necessary to achieve desired business objectives. Meeting on Company
            premises is the business norm. Business meetings held off Company premises require prior
            approval by the Chief Executive Officer or CFO.
          An ASO should approve business-meeting expenses. The approver must determine that the
            meeting expenses are reasonable and consistent with Company policy. The approver must
            also review the adequacy of the supporting documentation to corroborate the meeting
          Business Meeting expenses that are not reimbursed:
                 Casual, impromptu meetings in which the discussion is general and not addressed
                    toward a specific business objective: for example, a lunch characterized by shoptalk.
                 A meeting held in any facility, e.g., principal residence, cottage, boat, owned or
                    leased by an employee or a member of his or her immediate family.
                 One-on-one business meals between employees when neither is on travel status unless
                    the meeting is a job interview.
                 When meeting expenses include costs for meals, the receipt(s) must provide sufficient
                    information to allow separate identification of meal expenses.

    9. Membership Dues
        Reasonable membership dues for professional societies that are directly related to the
          employee’s job function are reimbursable only if pre-approved by the ASO.

    10. Non-billable Expenses
         Any expenditure incurred by an employee that is compliant with Company policies but that is
           not reimbursable by a client must have ASO approval prior to the consultant being
           reimbursed. The ASO should also document the basis as to why the expenditure is not
           billable to a client.

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    11. Parking
        Parking charges paid by an employee as part of commuting during a normal business day are
           not reimbursable.
        Parking charges associated with conducting business at other than the employee’s normal
           business location are reimbursable and may include:
                Parking at local airports when using a personal automobile. Employees must use less-
                   expensive, long-term parking, where available.
                Parking at public parking facilities when on business-related visits.

    12. Rail Transportation
         Using a train may be a more convenient means of travel than airline or automobile.
            Employees are reimbursed for coach class rail travel only.

    13. Spouse Travel
        Spouse or companion travel, which is required for business-related activities and is to be
           reimbursed by the Company, requires prior written approval by the Chief Executive Officer or
           CFO. This approval is to be included with the documentation accompanying the expense
           report. Expenses related to spouse or companion travel must be separately stated. Childcare
           expenses are not reimbursable. Employees who are approved to have a spouse accompany
           them should realize that this is a taxable benefit and will be reported to the IRS.

    14. Transportation Reimbursement
         Reimbursement for personal automobile use will be authorized when the employee is
           required to travel to another location for business reasons, including to and from
           airports/rail stations at the IRS’ published mileage reimbursement rate of $.375 per mile.
         When commuting to a customer or client, the total round-trip mileage from the employee’s
           residence to their permanent place of business (i.e. branch location or long-term assignment
           at client location) should be deducted from the actual mileage incurred. The difference is
           available for reimbursement.
         Bridge and highway tolls are reimbursable in addition to the flat mileage rate.
         Limousine services are not allowed within a city if taxi services are available. Use of
           limousine services is permitted only if no less expensive alternatives are available.
         Normal daily commuting mileage to the employee’s office is not reimbursable.

    15. Travel Incentives
         The employee may keep points accumulated through participation in airline, hotel, car rental
           or personal credit card promotions. Travel arrangements should be the most cost-effective
           available and not determined by available incentives. Employees who choose to participate
           in such programs are responsible for application and program administration.
         Membership fees for promotional programs are not reimbursable.
         Individuals may use travel incentives to purchase Company-reimbursed travel services. In such
           cases, the Company will provide the employee with a taxable bonus of 50% of the lowest
           available coach airfare for that flight.

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Appendix D
                                         Ineligible Expenses

This Appendix includes a non-exclusive list of ineligible expenses for which the Company will not
reimburse the employee. Employee with questions should contact their Office Manager or the Controller
at our administrative offices in Philadelphia.


1. Airline clubs – membership fees and charges relating to airline clubs such as Red Carpet Club,
    Admiral’s Club and others are not reimbursable for any employee.
2. Airline/Hotel/Automobile upgrades
3. Baby-sitting – regardless of the circumstances (e.g. accompanying spouse).
4. Cell Phones – any charges relating to cell phone usage are not reimbursable.
5. Clothing – regardless of the circumstances (e.g. lost luggage).
6. College/university alumni dues
7. Computer hardware and software (including wireless devises)– both new and upgrades. All
    computer hardware and software purchases must be made through the IT Department.
8. Credit card fees – including all charge card fees, except the corporate American Express card. Late
    charges and all other related charges are not reimbursable.
9. Customer Gifts – except as pre-approved and within the guidelines set forth above.
10. Equipment rentals – including slide and overhead projectors, screens, computers, printer, sound
    systems and similar items. If necessary for business purposes, these items need to be arranged
    through the Office Manager and processed through Accounts Payable.
11. Flowers – only reimbursable under circumstances of employee, consultant or customer hardship
    (funerals, sickness) or births within employee’s direct family (AVP approval required).
12. House sitting – regardless of the circumstances (e.g. accompanying spouse).
13. Newspapers, books, magazines, business and professional journals – the local branch/subsidiary
    office will purchase various publications for general use, if appropriate. (ASO approval required).
14. No Show hotel charges.
15. Office furnishings, accessories, and equipment – including lamps, desk pads, framing of diplomas
    and certificates, and similar items should be ordered through the local Office Manager (ASOapproval
16. Office supplies - including paper, calendars, Day Timers, diaries, diskettes, fax paper, notebooks,
    pens, pencils, printer and copier cartridges, refills, postage stamps, and similar items should be
    ordered through the local Office Manager (AVP approval required).
17. Parking tickets and traffic fines
18. Personal hotel services – including barber, beautician, manicurist, shoeshine and massage.
19. Pet boarding
20. Political contributions
21. Stationery items – including letterhead, greeting cards, business cards, personal stationery, and
    similar items. These items should be purchased through the local Office Manager.
22. Toiletries – regardless of the circumstances (e.g. lost luggage).
23. Travel accident insurance

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