One Cards in the Corporate Travel Arena: More Than Just a Single Piece of Plastic

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The NAPCP’s upcoming Corporate Travel Card workshop and regional meeting in San Francisco will explore purchase-to-pay best practices for travel & entertainment expenses, including considerations for adopting and maintaining a One Card program.

Among other topics, the San Francisco Travel Card Workshop will address how One Cards bring a mix of purchase types together within one program.

Increasingly, Purchasing Card program managers are finding themselves tasked with managing card programs and electronic payments for both purchasing- and travel-related expenses. The National Association of Purchasing Card Professionals (NAPCP)—in an ongoing effort to broaden its educational offerings—announces two events at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis: a new, two-day intensive workshop on Optimizing Your Corporate Travel Card Program (August 20-21, 2012) and a one-day San Francisco Regional Forum (August 22, 2012). Up for discussion is the adoption of One Card programs.

Lynn Larson, NAPCP Education Manager, observes, “One Cards bring a mix of purchase types together within one program—most often “P-Card-like” purchases (i.e., goods and services), travel and entertainment (T&E) expenses, and (possibly) fleet-related expenses. An organization can provide one piece of plastic to an employee who travels AND purchases goods/services. But there are additional drivers, beyond simple convenience for cardholders, which fuel the debate surrounding One Cards. Some organizations favor One Cards for the reported efficiencies and other benefits, while others oppose them for various reasons, such as the corporate liability aspect.”

To explore the topic further, the NAPCP expanded its online educational content for One Card programs, available to NAPCP members and, for a limited time, complimentary subscribers (http://www.napcp.org/JoinNow). New webpages and related resources uncover key considerations for a One Card program, including:

  • definition and characteristics
  • potential benefits and drawbacks
  • the liability debate (corporate liability for a One Card program vs. individual liability for a traditional Corporate [Travel] Card program commonly used for T&E expenses)
  • tax compliance
  • questions to aid the decision in moving to a One Card program

Also of interest are the results of a recent NAPCP poll (open to NAPCP members and complimentary subscribers), “What is Your Organization's Experience with One Card Programs?” that show the top five drivers for implementing One Cards. Curiously, poll results show that many organizations with One Card programs may not know what percentage of cardholders actually use the cards for both types of purchases (goods/services and T&E). “This represents a program management improvement opportunity,” urges Larson. “Ensuring meaningful overlap between employees who require Corporate Travel Cards and those who require Purchasing Cards and/or Fleet Cards is critical to supporting the business case for a One Card program.”

About the National Association of Purchasing Card Professionals (NAPCP)

The National Association of Purchasing Card Professionals (NAPCP) is a membership-based professional association committed to advancing Commercial Card and payment professionals and industry practices worldwide. The NAPCP is a respected voice in the industry, serving as an impartial resource for members at all experience levels in the public and private sectors. The NAPCP provides unmatched opportunities for continuing education and peer networking through its Annual Conference, Regional Forums, webinars, website, newsletters and weekly communication. The association sponsors research and publishes timely and relevant white papers, survey results and other documents. The NAPCP certifies professionals through the Certified Purchasing Card Professional (CPCP) credential program (http://www.napcp.org/cpcp). Please visit http://www.napcp.org to learn more about Commercial Card and payment programs in general, the value of membership, current member demographics, upcoming events and benefits of becoming a year-round partner sponsor.

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Lyssa Campbell
NAPCP
(952) 546-1880 5
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