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ChrisSharp
Occasional Member - Level 1

Most horrible travel expense application ever!

Hello Concur community, Concur employees, and users!  My name is Chris, and I am a very, very frustrated Concur expense report user.  This concur expense software, is probably the worst app I've even worked with, in the past 5-10 years, if not forever.  How do you, Concur tool developers, figure out, that a person (such as myself, graduated from a top private university, with a BS and MS in engineering, and 25+ years in the aerospace industry) takes 3+ hours to fill out an expense report, worth approximately $1,000.  Your tool is NOT user friendly, it is NOT intuitive, and the silliness of details is astronomical (not unlike my frustration).  I could probably write a five-page white paper on how many silly steps and un-intuitive steps one must take, to complete an expense report.  Shame on you guys, at Concur, shame on you for maintaining such a dinosauric app in this modern world.  Anyone else feel the same way?  How my employer still does business with you will be one of the biggest mysteries of my career...

 

44 REPLIES 44
KevinD
Community Manager
Community Manager

@ChrisSharp hello there. I wanted to reply so you knew that someone from SAP Concur has read your post. I wasn't sure if your post was precipitated by our move to the NextGen UI, but since I've not seen you post before, my guess is that was the reason for your post. 

 

I do want to preface the rest of my response with, and I'm just being transparent here, the team that manages this community is not the development team. We actually do not work with the development team. I wanted to mention this because I am pretty sure members of the development team are not members of this community. 

 

We do have a program specifically for customers to provide feedback. You can read about it here: CEI Program

 

I'm going to agree with you that an expense report should not take 3+ hours to complete. How many expense entries did you have on this report? Are you using a corporate credit card for your expenses and do those corporate card transactions feed into your Available Expenses? 

 

I would like to hear more about one of your statements where you said, "the silliness of details is astronomical". What do you mean by this? Are you referring to the details that must be filled out or are you referring to something else?

 

I can tell you that our product team has had some newer members added to it and they are committed to taking in feedback from customers and implementing that feedback. So, I encourage you to look into the CEI Program and taking part. 

 

If you have any questions for me about using our products, please let me know. I was in the SAP Concur training group for 12.5 years and am very familiar with how the system works from both and end user and site administrator perspective, so I might be able to provide some tips or things I have found that work well for me so we can cut down the time you spend on your report. 

 

I'm here on the Community Monday through Friday, so you know where you can find me. To be sure I am notified about your reply, be sure to tag me using @KevinD. 


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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Auf111
New Member - Level 1

I created an account (which was also a PITA,) just to say AMEN. It’s as if Concur was created to disincentivize employees from submitting their expense reports. An unnecessarily arduous and opaque process, not at all user-friendly and intuitive. I’m sorry for whoever has to respond to our negative reviews, I’m sure that they have no control, but if I could give this negative stars I would. Congrats, I never thought I’d be so impassioned by a piece of software. Maybe I’ll fund a start-up with all that expense money I never get back, to take down this archaic atrocity. Your favorite persona non grata - Karen

MiserableUser
Occasional Member - Level 3

Yup. I created my account to agree with how awful using SAP-Concur has been—the experience is demoralizing A-Z. It takes money as well as time out of pocket and changes the work experience for the worse.

 

SAP Concur is an atrocity of small mindedness that impacts quality of life at work and at home.It’s the absolute worst and every part of its design is hell. I cannot even comprehend what kind of mentality comes up with such a wrong-headed approach to life and then imposes it on others— a theft of workplace resources and quality of experience directly from employees.

 

lol not even joining the community or doing the authentication for posting works. I think it actually operates by not working 

jlvollmer
New Member - Level 1

I have to agree with the other posters. My blood pressure goes up every time I have to submit a report. It is not intuitive at all. It’s confusing how to do just about anything. It makes me second guess making a company expenditure just to avoid Concur. 

KevinD
Community Manager
Community Manager

@jlvollmer would you be willing to provide some examples of what specifically gets your blood pressure up? Can you walk me through your usual process when it comes to doing expenses? Knowing this might help me provide you a tip or two.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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russellsnow
Occasional Member - Level 2

As a user of the SAP Concur expense system, I appreciate its robust features and capabilities. However, I believe the user experience could be significantly enhanced by integrating spreadsheet functionalities into the interface. This would provide a familiar and intuitive layout for users who are accustomed to working with spreadsheets for financial data.

Furthermore, the ability to import and export data from and to Excel would be a valuable addition. This feature would streamline the process of transferring data between systems and make it easier for users to manipulate and analyze their expense data in a tool they are comfortable with.

I believe these improvements would greatly enhance the usability and efficiency of the SAP Concur expense system, ultimately leading to a better user experience and more effective expense management.

russellsnow
Occasional Member - Level 2

OK, I just spent 2 months on the road. I travel with my wife and dogs. So because the current per diem rates don't reflect reality due to inflation, I went over per diem most days. So, in order to exclude an amount I have to first click to the over per diem page. I have to note what days I am over and an amount. the click to the expenses page. I click on a meal I want to exclude the overage for. Click. Change the type to misc. click add itemization, click set as misc, exclude the amount, click to add another, set as meal, enter the amount, click save then go back to the expense list and do the next day. Do that 18 times. It is stupid that I cannot do all that from one page. I want to quit my job rather than face this stupidity for every trip.

@russellsnow I totally understand the frustration. However, companies should re-evaluate per diems due to inflation. SAP Concur doesn't control the per diem amounts companies use, so while I can sympathize with your issue, I would recommend speaking to your site administrator and explain the frustration and extra work you are now experiencing. Hopefully they will listen and make some updates to help you and your colleagues out.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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MiserableUser
Occasional Member - Level 3

It makes no sense for researchers or folks who travel.

 

Should employers realize (hopefully) that they have diverted major assets … these shenanigans will stop — theft of employee work time and cooperation for a terrible corporation that routinely goes way over budget with sky-high costs … by implying the employees are at fault for minor issues (that weren't explained or meaningful in the first place).


Giant capitalist snow job frankly.

dougpeeler
Occasional Member - Level 1

I'm in the same boat. Our company has used Concur for travel and expenses for a very long time. While there have been some improvements over time (receipt management and apps to take easier pictures of receipts), it is the most painful part of my business travel.  Our website responds very slowly when loading the selection options.  The Hotel Itemization USED TO have a method of inserting the single room price/daily tax/etc. that could be spread across a date range. Now it seems like you have to create a new Itemization for each and every day?  The Help tool is no help at all.  I barely found this community forum to try and find more insights.  Multiple co-workers I know just pay for their own meals on business trips simply because they want to MINIMIZE their required time in Concur.  For the moderator, I understand you are not the developer and I appreciate that. So, any hints or directions other tools that seem to be related to the frustrations posted here would be appreciated.

 

KevinD
Community Manager
Community Manager

@dougpeeler I can speak to the hotel itemization. We actually have made the experience better. You can certainly enter a single room rate and taxes and spread it across multiple days. You can now even more easily enter differing room rates and taxes if the rate changes over the course of the stay. See my screenshot below. When itemizing room rates, you just need to make sure it is set to Recurring Item, which is the default.

 

As for the colleagues buying their own meals, I can't really offer much in the way of that.

 

The only tip for speeding things up is to use our mobile app, especially for receipt capture. I always suggest to users to immediately open the mobile app and use it to snap a picture of the receipt. I don't know if your company is using ExpenseIt, but if so, take advantage of that feature. For out of pocket expenses, you can use ExpenseIt to take a picture of the receipt and within about a minute or less, it will create the expense entry for you. Once available, add it to your report.

 

If the expense incurred was paid for on your corporate card, you can still use ExpenseIt. It will create the entry as I just described and go to your Available Expenses. Let it sit there and when the corporate card transaction for that item comes in, it should get matched to the ExpenseIt item, which already has the receipt image.

 

My last tip is to create your expense report even before you travel. Have it sitting there already and when you incur an expense (out of pocket) you can immediately add the entry to your report. If you use ExpenseIt, it will do most of the data entry work for you.

 

Other than that, have your colleagues check out this Community as it is a great place to get help and answers to questions.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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dougpeeler
Occasional Member - Level 1

Key KevinD, thanks for the quick response. The screen post did not show up in your entry.  In regards to the recurring cost being Default, that is not what I see in my experience. Maybe my company has deployed differently?  I perform most of my entries via we browser site for easier typing and navigation vs. mobile.   

 

In regards to creating an expense report before I complete the trip, I've tried that in the past only to have difficult reconciling the charges that sometimes accurately get identified and those that don't. It seems to me that I end up generating double work with that approach.  I'll try again on my next trip in a few weeks. 

MiserableUser
Occasional Member - Level 3

But everything is extra work with these folks

russellsnow
Occasional Member - Level 2

The itemizations are infuriating because you cannot just click and enter the new number. A WHOLE NEW WEBPAGE LOADS. Stupid. Give ma table with all the data and let me have spreadsheet functions. Sort on different columns and do operations on multiple lines. For example, my stupid company puts a warning if you don't itemize the alcohol for each meal. In a multi month TDY this is tedious. Fortunately, you can ignore it but you get 89 warnings to ignore. There should be a way fix all of them with a group action. If there is, I haven't found it. The cycle time for every operation adds up to boiling over frustration. Especially when your company had a system that worked great, gave you a more spreadsheet like experience AND WAS REPLACED BY THIS GARBAGE for no apparent reason.

Nathenagrac3
Occasional Member - Level 1

I agree with the others. This system has got to be the most complicated, time consuming, frustrating things I have to deal with at work. Leading me and other admins to procrastinate and not even try to figure it out. Many! And I mean so many times I’ve had breakdowns because of the constant alerts and kick backs I get when trying to submit. I have expenses that go back to January of 2022, that have yet been submitted because it’s far beyond frustrating. Not to mention how much more expensive travel seems to be when doing it through concur/Christophersen travel, me and others tend to go directly with the vendor. Another issue with trying to book travel with Christophersen travel that partners with Concur is that the charges don’t always align with concur. And to book group travel, you get charged $25 per person! Last year I had to book travel for 20 students and 3 faculty

members, we were charged $25 per person on top of the expensive flights and rooms. 
you upload receipts for charges that may all be on the same receipt, but when you upload it, you get an alert that the receipt is a duplicate and you cannot move further! OMG! Just typing this is making my blood pressure go up. I just cannot explain just how much I hate this system. Time consuming, frustrating and absolutely unnecessary stress. Our department budget has been hit bad because the system is so user-Unfriendly that many of us were not able to understand the system before the fiscal year ended. so many of the expenses never hit the budget from last year. Which is a huge struggle now as it will hit this year’s budget and it’s not looking good. 

@Nathenagrac3 sorry to hear about your frustrations. I do feel I should point out that the alerts and kick backs are things your company has put into place, not SAP Concur. The SAP Concur system is what I say, "just the messenger". SAP Concur does not apply any rules, alerts or policies. Each company does this.

 

I can't speak to the fees of your travel agency, those are fees from them, not from SAP Concur. However, your comment about a duplicate receipt is intriguing to me as I've never seen a rule that flags a duplicate receipt. We have rules that flag duplicate expense entries, but unless your company has changed this rule, it should let you still submit as it is possible someone may have let's say an Uber ride from their hotel to their work site and then at the end of the day an Uber from work site to hotel, which could be the same amount, on the same day with the same expense type. The rule should just flag this a reminder/warning to ensure employees are not double-dipping on an expense. I don't usually see a duplicate alert that is a hard stop and won't let you submit. If you happen to have a screenshot of this alert, I'd like to see what it says.

 

All the required fields and required receipts are what your company has decided is necessary for report submission. My suggestion would be to speak with someone at your company to see why all the policies and rules in effect are needed and express your frustrations with them as they have the ability to make site changes to make it more user-friendly.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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Orit_Dor
Routine Member - Level 1

I am a client with Concur and run the application in my organization.
I just wanted to point out that the client can set and decide how many required fields the user will need to fill in, it’s in their hand to make it easier to the end user.
I see a trend moving from a trust base system to more controlled policy enforcement, some of it as a result of using AI tools, and internal audits recommendations.

russellsnow
Occasional Member - Level 2

It takes me weeks to get up enough energy to force myself to face it. I'm %100 travel so it's a big deal. The system seems to be designed for a manager that takes a few days for a conference once a year. If anything happens out of the narrow confines it gets really painful.

@russellsnow hello there. What would be an example of something "out of the narrow confines"? I'm asking because these confines are usually due to rules put in place by your company. The SAP Concur system acts how it does based on how your company tells it to act, so it might be that there are some scenarios your company didn't take into consideration when configuring the site that they might need to go back an re-evaluate.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
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russellsnow
Occasional Member - Level 2

My main problem is that it isn't a spreadsheet. You have tabular data. It is presented as tabular data. It eventually probably gets reported as tabular data but you interact with it as a webpage. Everything you do required 5 mouse clicks to do it. Make the interface a spreadsheet. import all charges. Data goes from input on the left to user's selections getting specific to the right. 
Or give an export/import function to Excel.

Or both.

But git rid of the click, click, click (oops start over because now all the data is deselected) click click click .

Just my opinion.