Employers are going to extremes to retain their staff throughout the pandemic’s “Great Resignation.” Many have taken to approving some over-the-top expenses submitted by their teams while working from home over the past two years.
Emburse, a spend-management software company, shared some of the craziest expenses that were approved by employers in 2021, according to their survey. Take a look and let me know if you can top these!
- Speedo: $13.25 – Gag gift for a departing coworker to ensure they went out in style.
- Long-distance call: $0.14 – A short call to check in on a client–a very short one.
- White carpets: $11,297 – Purchased to dress up a tradeshow booth — and thrown out the same day when they got too dirty.
- Pet sitting: $1,250 – Due to its (alleged) separation anxiety, a general manager hired help to care for his horse through PetSitter.com while he was away on business.
- Facelift: $10,000 – Categorized as “repair and maintenance” by the company’s owner.
- Nail: $0.53 – An office construction project was missing a nail to be completed–just one.
- Tattoo removal: $1,000 – De-inked an incoming employee’s skin art (we didn’t ask questions) before they started.
- A wheel deal: $25,000 – With the promise of a company car, a new hire visited a dealership and charged a new ride to his corporate card.
- Carpet cleaner: $100 – A tray of baked beans headed for a work function spilled in an employee’s car.
- Grass seed: $85 – Repairing lawn damage caused by a visiting coworker attending a private dinner party.
- 1960s railroad carriage: $45,000 – Purchased to showcase at an event with the intent to sell afterward.
- Gas: 31 cents – In error, an employee topped off their gas tank with a personal card, then submitted the expense report through the mail.
- Spa treatments: $5,000 – During his onboarding for a new position, a man expensed $5,000 in spa treatments for his spouse because she needed the extra support and rest.
- Pest control: $500 – After seeing a cockroach climb out of her purse at home, an employee expensed $500 for pest control services to spray her house.
- Home theater components: $75,000 – Over two years and piece by piece, an employee expensed $75,000 of home theater system components; he was fired but not asked to repay.
- Cadavers: $15,000 – In preparation for an upcoming study, a bioresearch facility employee expensed $15,000 to purchase human cadavers.
Thanks to the effects of the pandemic, employers may have to have a bit of flexibility when it comes to approving employee expenses. After all, we need to keep our staff happy—and what better way to do that than a facelift and a Speedo?!
Need help retaining your team while being compliant with your financials? Call C&B for advice at 201.787.6542.