NEWSLETTER: Winter 2021

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WE NEED YOUR INPUT

Since the COVID-19 pandemic started, we have postponed scheduling new travel & expense management quarterly Lunch & Learn training sessions. This series reviews information related to the travel and expense management program including travel and expense management tools, the Travel Card, and Concur system. We are seeking your input as we plan a virtual session for the Lunch & Learn training series. Please take a few minutes to respond to this survey so that we can better understand your interest and availability.


UNUSED AIRLINE TICKETS

With travel being canceled for several months and currently restricted to only essential travel, unused airfare tickets are waiting to be utilized. Travelers or travel arrangers for departments should work directly with Anthony Travel to complete a name change to utilize the funds on any unused airfare in your area. For information on how to best utilize your departments unused tickets please contact Anthony Travel at pitt@anthonytravel.com.

COVID-19 Standards and Guidelines: Travel Management

Effective on September 30, 2020 the University published the COVID-19 Standards and Guidelines: Travel Management.   These guidelines have been approved by the Healthcare Advisory Group and the appropriate Sr. Vice Chancellors. All travelers should take a few moments to review these guidelines, not following the guidance can result in not being reimbursed. Key items include:

  • All University travel must be booked through Concur/Anthony Travel or the traveler will not be reimbursed.
  • The University’s Travel Card Must be used for all domestic and international travel expenses paid by the University.
  • Changes to non-personal international travel made outside Concur/Anthony Travel should be added manually in the International SOS MyTrips portal.
  • All travel itineraries paid for by another host institution must be registered manually.

For complete details please visit the COVID-19 Standards and Guidelines page.

Managed Hotel Program

Effective September 28, 2020, Anthony Travel, in coordination with the University, began providing a managed Hotel Program for all groups and events that require hotel accommodations (i.e. room blocks, conference or meeting space). This new program provides the following benefits:

  • Help mitigate risk in the negotiation phase, with Anthony Travel working directly with hotels to obtain the most favorable pricing and terms.
  • Increase buying power by leveraging total spend across the University and Anthony Travel.
  • Provide your department and its guests with discounted accommodations that meet the University’s standards of quality and service.

Anthony Travel’s dedicated PantherExpress Hotel Program Manager, Allison Jones, is available to assist with your area’s hotel contract needs! You can contact Allison directly at: allisonjones@anthonytravel.com or 412-267-7151.

All contracts with any hotel, regardless of dollar amount, must be initiated through Allison. She is responsible for cultivating hotel relationships and managing the overall Hotel Program. Allison has the authority to negotiate agreements on behalf of the University.

To begin planning your area’s next event please review and follow the Hotel Room Blocks and Hotel Conference/Meeting Space Request Process in the PantherExpress System. Visit this page for more detailed information.  If you would like to schedule a meeting to discuss this program in more detail please contact Emily Duchene, the University’s Travel Program Manager.


Expense Report Payment Timeline

Payment of expense reports is based on several factors. Before payment can be issued, departmental approvals need to be made. Once the department approves, the report is sent to Payment Processing for review and approval, which could take up to two weeks or more. After Payment Processing approves, the payments will flow as follows:

  • Assuming Payment Processing approves the report on Monday.
  • Payment file is imported into PRISM and approved for payment on Tuesday.
  • On Wednesday all Direct Deposits will be processed – and these should be posted to the employees’ accounts on Thursday.
  • Any paper checks being issued would be processed and mailed (Guests, students and all non-employees).

If approval from Payment Processing occurs on another day, the file will be processed on the first Tuesday or Thursday following the approval. It will follow the same process as above with the adjustment of the days of the week. Due to COVID-19, check runs only take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Check Payment Processing status here.

Expiring University Travel Cards

Expiring cards will be issued automatically. They are typically received by the 10th day of the month during which the card expires and are sent to the address on the credit card statement. To change address:

  • Contact Citizens Bank with the number on the back of the card 888-798-4600.
  • If there are any issues with changing address email the travel card administrator.

If a cardholder does not receive their new card they should:

  • Check their office mailbox to confirm it has not been received.
  • Contact Citizens Bank with the number on the back of the card 888-798-4600 to report it was not received and request a new card.
  • If there are any issues with changing address email the travel card administrator.

QUICK REFERENCES


EXPENSE PROCESSING REMINDERS

  • Please wait until the end of the month to submit all expenses from the month on one single expense report.
  • Submission of legal settlements: all legal settlements must go through the Office of University Counsel. No settlement should occur in Concur.
  • New Expense type VIRTUAL CONFERENCE/SEMINAR/COURSE REGISTRATION has been added to Concur and is now available for use.

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