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Oversight Study Reveals 40% of Employees Have Made A Personal Purchase on Company Card

Employees Reveal Year-Over-Year Uptick in Out-of-Policy Spending Near Valentine’s Day

Oversight, the global leader in spend management and risk mitigation technology, today releases the findings from its recent survey surrounding employees making personal purchases on their employer’s dime. The survey, conducted among 250 adult workers in the U.S., revealed that 40% of employees have, or know a colleague who has, purchased a personal item, service or good that was outside of company policy – a 5% year-over-year increase.

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“As we approach Valentine’s Day, organizations should be aware of the potential for increased personal purchases that get expensed as business purchases, especially during these strained economic conditions.”

While the 2020 survey saw employees purchase gifts, drinks and dinners, one of this year’s respondents admitted to expensing an engagement ring – a notable purchase as we approach Valentine’s Day.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, consumers have identified Valentine’s Day as important to celebrate, with the National Retail Federation expecting total spending to reach $21.8 billion. For companies, this trend in spending could be noticed on expense reports. And, as Oversight’s recent Spend Insights Report revealed, spend risk and out-of-policy purchases continue to accelerate during the pandemic, making it more critical than ever that companies continuously monitor spend.

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“During the pandemic, we continue to see new employee spending behaviors and patterns translate into escalated risk,” said Nathanael L’Heureux, Chief Client Officer for Oversight. “As we approach Valentine’s Day, organizations should be aware of the potential for increased personal purchases that get expensed as business purchases, especially during these strained economic conditions.”

Beyond just the potential purchase of food and drinks around Valentine’s Day, Oversight’s survey also revealed another potential spend risk concern for organizations: purchases for their work-from-home setup. More than 20% of survey respondents stated they made out-of-policy purchases for office supplies. Due to the dramatic shift to work-from-home for most companies, Oversight has uncovered instances of employees outfitting their home workstations with everything from big-screen TVs to soundbars.

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