Dance classes. Taxidermy. Toilet paper. An entire side of beef. Those are some of the more eyebrow-raising items that have shown up on employee expense reports, according to a survey by Robert Half. Some employees are willing to push the envelope when it comes to getting reimbursed.
The temptation to stick your employer with the bill for personal items might be even stronger if you have a company credit card. It’s just so easy to swipe that piece of plastic. But watch out. Companies are on the lookout for employees who misuse their corporate cards, and they’re finding a lot of scofflaws. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, 31.8% of small businesses with fewer than 100 employees experience cases of fraud. Roughly 20.6% of businesses with 10,000 employees or more experience cases of fraud. In small businesses, expense reimbursement fraud (getting the company to pay for non-business expenses) is among the top five most common issues.
You’ll be able to tell from your company policies, and the attitudes in your office, how stringent your company policy on corporate card use is. Some companies might allow personal charges provided you pay that portion of the bill yourself. Others don’t allow any personal expenses to go on the card. Your card might even have spending limits and prohibit charges in certain categories to reduce the risk of fraud.
Whether your company has a flexible or firm policy on company credit card use, there are some things you shouldn’t use your corporate plastic for. To avoid sticky situations with management, think twice before putting these five types of charges on your company card.