As I’m sure many of you are aware, the International Consumer Electronic Show (CES) is going on this week in Las Vegas.
This is where the titans of consumer products, companies like Samsung, Apple, and Sony reveal their latest gizmos and gadgets. It is a multi-day event full of one-upmanship and fancy parties all in the hopes that one of their products will end up on the “What’s Hot for 2014” list.
As we write this, according to CNN, this year’s highlights from CES include a DVR that can record 8 shows at once, 120 inch HDTVs (that cost $150,000), and a hydrogen powered car from Toyota. You may ask yourself the same question we did when we read the article about CES. Is there really a demand to record 8 shows at once? Let’s say some of us actually have $150k to spend on a TV - will it even fit in our family room? And as far as hydrogen power, California is slated to be the first state to have fuel stations (could be difficult for those of us on the East Coast to fill up on the way to work). The reason we mention CES is that while our industry won’t be hosting a week-long party in Vegas, most of the vendors in the Travel and Expense market are working feverishly, not very differently from Sony or Toyota, to develop what they hope will be the “coolest” thing in T & E for 2014.
There are all sorts of buzz words to describe the products that some T & E vendors have promised will “end expense reporting as we know it”. Among the silver bullets for expense reporting we have heard of solutions like one click, receipt parsing, end to end, smart scanning, electronic receipts, etc.
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These may sound cool, like that DVR that records 8 shows at once, but they are simply distractions. Vendors are trying to get you to focus on fringe technology when all you really want is time to watch the one show you recorded a week ago, or maybe to have an extra $600 to buy that 40 inch TV at Costco (you know the one that would fit perfectly above your fireplace).
Travel and Expense reporting isn’t very sexy, yet we find that the focus for most vendors isn’t on solving basic requirements like credit card reconciliation, tight accounting integration, good analytics, and real process improvement. Their focus seems to be on what might be “cool” for 2014.
At DATABASICS, you won’t see us getting excited about landing a segment in a magazine because our expense tool will auto write reviews to Yelp.com after one of our customer’s dinners at Chili’s. Newsflash - we leave those useless technologies to our competitors.
Our satisfaction is gained by customers whose staff get to go home on time, who don’t have stacks of paper on their desks, and who can get an answer to a question within minutes of contacting our support line.
Travel and Expense reporting isn’t about finding the next great technology to get a headline in the tech section of a website. It is about finding and perfecting a solution to problems here and now.
DATABASICS provides cloud-based, next generation Expense Reporting, P-Card Management, Timesheet & Leave Management, and Invoice Processing automation. Specializing in meeting the most rigorous requirements, DATABASICS offers the highest level of service to its customers around the world.
DATABASICS is relied upon by leading organizations representing all the major sectors of the global economy: financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, research, retail, engineering, non-profits/NGOs, technology, federal contractors, and other sectors.