Posts Tagged "SmartPay"

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SmartPay 2

»Posted by on Dec 31, 2014 in Payment Methods, Travel Professional Resources | 0 comments

The current SmartPay program enables many Federal organizations to obtain purchase, travel, fleet, and integrated charge card products and services through what’s known as Master Contracts.  GSA has established these contracts with Citibank, Chase, Bank of America, US Bank, and Mellon Bank.  At the higher level, government agencies issue task orders against these existing contracts to obtain credit card products and services.  Due to the current existing contracts expiring in November 2008, the new credit card contracts, which are known as GSA SmartPay 2 were awarded during the summer of 2007. Within my office we offer and manage many different credit card programs for the many customers whom we provide travel services for.  Lately we have been heavily...

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Government Individually Billed Travel Charge Card

»Posted by on Dec 28, 2014 in Payment Methods | 0 comments

The Government Travel Charge Card program is known as GSA SmartPay.  The GSA SmartPay program provides government charge cards to agencies throughout the United States government, through master contracts negotiated with major national banks.  In June 2007, the Office of Charge Card Management awarded the GSA SmartPay 2 master contracts to Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, and U.S. Bank.  Through these contracts, agencies can obtain a government individually billed travel charge card (IBT) as well as a number of different types of charge card services to support their mission needs. The Federal Travel Regulations (FTR) requires mandatory use of the government travel charge card by government travelers.  However,  each agency policy can mandate when an IBT should be...

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The Evolution of Government Travel

»Posted by on Aug 22, 2014 in Airlines, Electronic Travel Systems, History and Overview, Payment Methods, Travel Management Centers | 0 comments

Twenty years ago I was assigned to the office that was responsible for travel processing.  In 1989 very few employees had computers and most of the work continued to be done as it had been for decades – by paper.   At that time a traveler would work with their secretary to complete a multi-carbon copy travel authorization.  The per diem rates were looked up in a GSA published book and the secretary would complete the estimates after calling the airline and hotel to make reservations.  Once the paper authorization or voucher was completed it was sent to several people for signature and eventually ended up in the Finance Office. Once the Finance Office received the documents, a technician verified the per diem rates and quarter day calculations for first and...

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Credit Cards – Getting A Bad Rap?

»Posted by on Feb 22, 2014 in Business Intel/Data Mining, Business Practices, Payment Methods, Travel Professional Resources | 0 comments

The GSA website provides an interesting perspective on the issue of the misuse of Government Smartpay credit cards. We have all seen stories about Government employees using Smartpay cards to make outrageous purchases, but are these articles the tip of an iceberg of misuse or an abberation? A reading of various FAQs on the site suggests that the credit cards have received a bad rap not because they are widely misused, but because the system readily discloses such misuse, exposing those who try to use the cards for improper purposes. GSA contends that misuse accounts for only a very small percentage of overall use. According to GSA, banks under contract to the Smartpay program must provide an assortment of protections against misuse. Under the program agencies may...

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CBA Reconciliation Issues

»Posted by on Feb 10, 2014 in Payment Methods | 0 comments

Introduction One of the more vexing issues for some agency travel managers is the reconciliation of government Centrally Billed Account (CBA) charge card transactions originating from the agency’s chosen E-Gov Travel Service (ETS).  While in some cases the responsibility for CBA reconciliation lies with the ETS contractor and its embedded Travel Management Center (TMC), there are other cases where the agency is responsible and must match transaction data provided by the agency’s SmartPay® bank with authorization and voucher data provided by the ETS contractor.  This becomes particularly problematic if and when there is no ETS authorization number in the bank-provided charge card statement to use as a “key” to tie it back to the ETS authorization.  A...

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SmartPay 2

»Posted by on Feb 6, 2014 in Payment Methods | 0 comments

Smartpay 2 is the next generation of the Government charge card program put forward by the General Services Administration’s master contract. Smartpay 2 offers the added functionality for the agencies to choose an integrated Government charge card. This allows Federal employees to have the ability to charge purchase card transactions, travel card transactions, and even fleet card transactions on one individually issued plastic card. Another functionality that is not widely in use is the ability to centrally bill travel transactions. Our agency has taken advantage of both of these functionalities since the first Smartpay contract and they have worked so well; this white paper aims to explain more about these benefits so others can consider and take advantage if...

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Data Collection Under the TRX MIS Contract: Implementation, Deployment, and Strategic Sourcing Issues

»Posted by on Apr 18, 2012 in Business Intel/Data Mining, Business Practices, Electronic Travel Systems, Global Distribution Systems | 0 comments

The GSA (General Services Administration) often enters into City-Pairs negotiations hampered by a relative lack of hard data on Government travel.  Where substantive data has been available it has not been as detailed or as encompassing as the Government requires to effectively support negotiations.  This lack of effective data caused the Travel Program management Office (PMO) of the GSA to conduct an Full and Open competition for a vendor that could provide services to make up for this lack of information.  The solicitation requirement was to obtain the best travel data aggregation and reporting solution that satisfied government requirements at the best value.  A trade-off analysis was performed between technical and cost and past performance to make the...

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