At Oracle, we typically process about 30,000 employee expense reports per week and 550,000 American Express transactions per month. To minimize manual effort associated with expense management and submission, and to deliver exceptional experiences to our customers and employees, we take advantage of Oracle’s quarterly Cloud updates—new innovations available on a quarterly basis with Oracle Fusion Cloud. Many of these new features are standard and automatically go live on a quarterly basis, while others are implemented on an opt-in basis, providing us the flexibility to determine our own timeline for uptaking the new functionality.
Leveraging quarterly opt-in features, we’ve been able to reimagine expense reporting and submission in Oracle Cloud ERP, delivering a modern and simple experience for employees around the world. In addition, quarterly updates have provided the opportunity to roll out the new Oracle Digital Assistant for on-the-go expense submissions via SMS.
In Oracle Cloud ERP, Oracle employees can now view all expense reports in an intuitive carousel display, including what actions they should take to submit reports and items for payment. All actions can then be easily and quickly completed by clicking on the “action” menu. Multiple quick search options allow users to easily locate expenses.
Our employees can also use the Oracle Digital Assistant to submit expenses on the go. Users simply take a photo of their receipt and text it to the Oracle Digital Assistant, which then either confirms the expense item or asks for more information. It can also automatically process receipts sent via email. Users have the option to log in to the Travel and Expenses homepage to see categorized expense items and determine which, if any, require attention. To keep users up to date on their expenses, they can choose to receive a weekly digest email to let them know about any updates to their reports and outstanding items that might need review. Since the introduction of the Digital Assistant, users are spending 60% less time submitting expenses.
Josh Kamenecka, Group Vice President of North America Applications Solution Engineering, shared his personal experience using the Oracle Digital Assistant:
“I love using the Digital Assistant to submit my expenses. Right after generating an expense, I can quickly and easily take a snapshot of my receipt and submit it via text, and the Digital Assistant wastes no time processing and submitting it. The process is so simple that I don’t expect to ever go back to submitting expenses on my desktop; and the frequency of auto pay makes it such that my corporate card is substantially paid by the time I return from my business trip.”
Since moving to Oracle Cloud ERP and benefiting from quarterly updates, we have been able to reduce our expense processing cycle time by 30% from the time an expense is submitted until payment is initiated. And with the user experience improvements, the expense submission process itself is easier; a typical 10-line expense report is now 72% faster to create and submit.
By moving to Oracle Cloud ERP and standardizing expenses globally, we’ve also been able to auto-classify half of all of credit card transactions—automatically matching expense items submitted via the Digital Assistant to corporate card charges. With more expenses classified automatically, we’ve significantly reduced the need for manual intervention.
While opt-in features provide the benefit of flexible timing for implementation, we’ve learned that early adoption of exciting new features every 90 days helps us enrich the user experience. “Our move to Oracle Cloud ERP has opened up possibilities like never before,” said Scott Gawel, Senior Vice President and Assistant Corporate Controller. “Where we could only dream about next generation technologies with our legacy on-premise environment, we now plan for how fast we can implement Oracle’s latest product innovations for both our employees and our customers, and stay ahead of their evolving needs and expectations. Taking advantage of our latest technologies is no longer discussed in terms of ‘if’, but ‘when’.”