Access to new online Payment Request feature.

Discuss questions around local unit policies for budgeting, reconciling, etc. This forum should not contain specific financial or membership information.
dlslade
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Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#1

Post by dlslade »

According to the Access Table the Payment Request feature is only available to organization presidencies. Bishoprics, stake presidencies, and unit clerks do not have access to it. I don't understand why this is the case. They should be able to use the feature to submit payment requests for their expenses as well.
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Biggles
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#2

Post by Biggles »

Here in the UK, as a Ward Clerk, there is a drop down menu which by default allows me to see and edit the budget categories. If you select this drop down menu this reveals the other organisation presidencies, which if one is selected reveals the option for the presidency to make Payment Requests for their organisation.
jdlessley
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#3

Post by jdlessley »

dlslade wrote:According to the Access Table the Payment Request feature is only available to organization presidencies. Bishoprics, stake presidencies, and unit clerks do not have access to it. I don't understand why this is the case. They should be able to use the feature to submit payment requests for their expenses as well.
Bishoprics, stake presidencies, and unit clerks do not need the Payment Request feature for the most part. All of those callings have finance permissions and can enter the expense request information directly into the Expenses > Enter Expense tab. The Payment Request feature was to permit those without finance permissions to get the electronic payment request into the system for those with finance permissions to review and approve.

I suppose there may be concern for those situations where the person in one of those callings with finance permissions would like to submit a reimbursement request online for themselves as an EFT payee. This has been discussed in other threads. Who Approves for the Bishop? is one of those threads. The work-around solution for these cases in our ward is to have the reimbursement request emailed to someone else to enter into the system. For example, I as ward clerk have an Elders Quorum expense. I email it to the Elders Quorum President for him to review, approve, and enter. This follows the procedure to keep the EQ President in the loop for EQ budget expenses. I then will not be one of the approvers for an EFT payment or a check signer for a check payment. Another example, I as ward clerk have an expense for the Administration budget category. I send the reimbursement request to the Assistant Ward Clerk - Finance for him to process. I again avoid being one of the approvers for an EFT payment.

Edit:
While typing my response above I realized we need to submit feedback for the online Payment Request feature to add capability for those callings with finance permissions to cover the examples I provided. We can use the system as Biggles points out to get the expense reimbursement into the system for organization budget expenses. But using the Payment Request feature that way bypasses the organization presidents in the approval process. Entering the expense directly into Expenses > Enter Expenses does so also. Keeping the organizations in the approval loop is necessary, even for unit leaders with finance permissions. And my second example would also benefit if I could use the system to send the request to another unit leader, such as the assistant clerk, to process.
JD Lessley
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drepouille
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#4

Post by drepouille »

As the ward clerk, I have recently been purchasing many things for the ward. Since LCRF does not allow me to submit or approve my own reimbursement requests, I have emailed my receipts to the bishopric, asking them to create the expenses to reimburse me. At first, they were hesitant because they didn't know how to do it. But today, two of them created duplicate expenses to reimburse me. The bishop caught one of them in time, and denied it, so all I had to do was to delete that duplicate expense. The other duplicate EFT was approved and paid before I could do anything to stop it. I just called the GSC, but they said the EFT had already been sent to my bank. So now I will have to write a check to return the overpayment to the ward budget.

As discussed above, this confusion could be avoided if we could submit our own reimbursement requests from the ward budget.
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska
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Biggles
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#5

Post by Biggles »

As I have posted elsewhere in the forum, here in the UK, as a ward clerk I can post my own expenses. There is a notice that pops up saying I can’t, but the system allows me to post the expense. What the system won’t allow, quite rightly, is for me to be one of the approvers. I suggest that, if you haven’t already done so, is to give it a try. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, is a popular saying here in the UK. Either way let us know the outcome.
drepouille
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#6

Post by drepouille »

You are correct that I have been scared off by the warning message: "The submitter should not be the payee or fast-offering recipient of the expense". I suppose it would probably allow me to submit my own expense, but I don't want to do anything to make the auditor raise an eyebrow. Besides, this is a good training exercise for the bishopric. Yes, I could ask my assistant clerk for finance, but he doesn't read his email.
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska
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Biggles
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#7

Post by Biggles »

Well I’ve had several audits over the years and my own expense claims have been randomly pulled out for inspection. The auditor, so far, hasn’t raised any exceptions. All he is interested in is that that there is a paper trail to follow and that the Bishop has approved the expense. What we still do is to use a claim form signed by the Bishop, before the claim is processed. This is uploaded as part of the process. If it isn’t practical for him to sign a paper claim form, then he authorises the expense by email. It may be a bit long winded, but we rarely have audit exceptions

For what it’s worth, we started doing online expenses about 2 years ahead of the USA. We stopped using cheques at the same time. We went straight to EFT.

What is new for us, in June, we started online Donations. Yippee!
russellhltn
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#8

Post by russellhltn »

Biggles wrote:What is new for us, in June, we started online Donations. Yippee!
Now you get to deal with members who failed to move the decimal point and ended up donating their entire paycheck.
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Biggles
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#9

Post by Biggles »

russellhltn wrote:
Biggles wrote:What is new for us, in June, we started online Donations. Yippee!
Now you get to deal with members who failed to move the decimal point and ended up donating their entire paycheck.
Even before we reach that hurdle, we have to persuade members to use the online system! We are not in a position, at the moment, to hold sacrament meetings in our meetinghouses, where we would be able to encourage members to donate this way. A fair proportion of our ward members aren’t tech savvy and don’t trust using the internet for banking purposes!
jdlessley
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Re: Access to new online Payment Request feature.

#10

Post by jdlessley »

Biggles wrote:What the system won’t allow, quite rightly, is for me to be one of the approvers.
Our bishop has tested the waters for FO assistance payments he has made on the behalf of FO recipients with his own financial resources. He has entered his own reimbursement request expenses and been marked as an approver as well as the bishop's approval. Only one other approver has been necessary to complete the EFT payment process in the system. Now we will see what happens with the audit.
JD Lessley
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