Global Information Technology

July 22, 2013

Tech Talk: Cloud Technology Makes Travel and Expense Reporting A Smooth Process

Have you ever wanted to fly among the clouds? To rapidly deploy apps or manage IT services with greater flexibility? To support real-time analytics across all types of data from email to ERP? West IT is leveraging cloud computing to help realize those goals. West began its journey to the cloud several years ago by looking first at cloud service offerings for all new IT services. Such services allow IT to satisfy the strategic goal of cost-effectively enabling high availability of IT services in a more mobile and globally competitive world.

West IT began leveraging cloud technology to drive down IT costs while targeting opportunities to move quickly and work with colleagues across our enterprise. A paradigm shift, delivering technologies through cloud-enabled services, has enabled IT to innovate and drive measurable value. One recent cloud success story is the implementation of Concur™, a cloud-based business travel and expense management solution. Concur makes it easy to book and manage travel and expenses all in one place, saving time and reducing costs from the process.

The Concur initiative was a collaboration between the IT, Finance, Supply Chain and Travel functions at West. Since Concur is a paperless system, West has achieved both hard and soft benefits from the initiative. The savings from improved controls to reduction in processing time and errors has removed thousands of dollars of non-value-added time each month from the travel and expense process. Since Concur is paperless, West no longer absorbs the cost of offsite storage, which can exceed $1,500 per box over its lifetime.

In the connected world, over 82 percent of business travelers have a smartphone. That’s where the real value of the cloud comes in to play. With the Concur Receipt Store, photos of receipts can be taken with the smartphone’s camera and uploaded to the cloud, bringing peace of mind to travelers who no longer need to worry about saving or losing receipts. The cloud and Concur are available to business travelers who are on the go, any time, any place.