Purchasing Card and Expense Reimbursement Policies

Pomona College, along with the other Claremont Colleges, has implemented the Expenses module in Workday. This module allows for the creation of expense reports that include both P Card and reimbursable transactions so that reports can be created for each trip that is taken.

Conversely, the module also allows for the creation of P Card reports on a monthly basis as was the case prior to the modules implementation or even on a weekly or daily basis as transactions will be uploaded from Bank of America on a daily basis. Separate expense reimbursement reports can also be created as needed.

NOTE: No matter which method is used, all P Card transactions must be allocated/coded and Approved in Workday within 30 days of the date of the receipt.

Job aides to assist you in completed Expense Reports are located in the Workday Resources app on the home page in Workday.

The following is a summary of Pomona’s reimbursement and P Card policies.

Credit Card/Purchasing Card (PCARD) Purchases

The Finance Office issues purchasing cards to Pomona faculty and staff to make the purchasing process more efficient. The P Card functions similarly to a credit card (it has a VISA logo on the face of the card) and is paid directly by the College to Bank of America (B of A).

To obtain a purchasing card or request a credit increase to a purchasing card, log into Workday's website and search ‘Request Purchase Card’ and complete the necessary fields. A detailed job aide is located in the Workday link on the My Campus Portal or in the Workday Resources application on the Workday homepage. Once approved, the card will be available within 10 days. You will be contacted by the Finance Office when it is available.

The policies included herein are for general expenditure approvals relating to P Card purchases:

  • Most cards have a preset maximum single purchase level of $2,500. NOTE: If this needs to be changed due to a specific event, please create a ‘Request Purchase Card’ in Workday prior to the event so the card can be updated. This will prevent card denial at the time of purchase.
  • Restrictions – The card should not be used to pay for the following:
    • Cash Advances
    • Financial Services
    • Professional Services – legal, architectural, engineering, accounting, and other professional services
    • Invoice Payments
      • Please place your order with the supplier and request that Pomona College be invoice at invoices@pomona.edu. Once the invoice is received, your department will create a supplier invoice in Workday
      • An exception is allowed if there is an urgent purchase. In these cases, invoices may be paid on the P Card but then MUST be entered as a $0 invoice in Workday to help track purchases and prevent duplicate payments.
    • Equipment and/or furniture, computer equipment
    • Generally, purchases over $10,000 are NOT allowed on a P Card. Prior to the purchase, such expenses should be processed through the Procurement module in Workday. If transactions over $10,000 are charged without approval from the Director of Finance, the Purchasing Card may be canceled.
      • An exception is allowed if the following have been met AND the exception is approved by the Director of Finance:
        • After the contracts with the supplier has been signed by the appropriate individuals, a Supplier Contract must be created in Workday
        • Once a final billing has been received, the contract in Workday must be amended to match the final billing amount and an updated, signed contract must be attached.
  • An expense report must be APPROVED in Workday and include copies of receipts, within 30 days of the date of the expense.
  • Detail receipts must be attached for all meals and for any transaction greater than $75. NOTE: When completing the expense report, ensure the transaction date of the expense line matches the receipt date.
    • Transactions greater than $75 that are not supported with appropriate documentation will be treated as taxable income to the cardholder.
    • Descriptions and business purpose for each expense should be documented in the memo field of the report. Specific instructions related to preparing the report are given when the P Card is issued to the cardholder.
    • Names of attendees at luncheons must be provided, unless it is a large gathering >10 people then the group affiliation must be noted.
    • Hotel detail folios must be included.
    • Cardholders are strongly discouraged from using their personal funds or personal credit cards when traveling or purchasing goods for the college.
  • Gift Cards are allowed but must be given out within 30 days of purchase. A Participant Gift Card Log must be completed and included with the expense report. If the card is over $10 in value, it will be taxable to the recipient.
  • Employee Gifts
    • Merit Gifts are discouraged in that all merit type ‘rewards’ should be taken into account during the employee review process. However, if approved by Human Resources, gifts under $100 are acceptable. The employee name must be included in the description of the expense
      • Cash/Gift Certificates are discouraged as any amount given is considered wages to the employee and must be added to the employee’s W2 per IRS regulations
    • Achievement Awards of less than $400 are acceptable and nontaxable to employees if:
      • It is awarded for length of service (must be after 5 years of employment)
      • It is awarded for safety achievement unless:
        • the employee is a manager, administrator, clerical or other professional
        • more than 10% of the department employees have already received a safety award.
  • POMONA PURCHASING CARDS ARE NOT TO BE USED FOR PERSONAL EXPENSES. If personal expenses are purchased inadvertently, the funds should be reimbursed immediately through the Cashier using a deposit form available on the Portal under the ‘Finances’ tab.
  • Reimbursement for direct payments to students/faculty/staff by other departments utilizing prepaid debit cards or electronic payment apps like PayPal and Venmo are not permitted unless approved in advance by the Finance Office. Situations that may need prepaid cards should be handled using Cash Advances to employees or Petty Cash to students or other means determined by the Finance Office. Receipts are still required to clear any advance of cash.
  • If using the Per Diem method of reimbursement, do not use the P Card to pay for any meal transactions.

If your purchasing card report is delinquent the Finance Office reserves the right to:

  • Charge all transactions to your operating budget in the appropriate categories
  • Deactivate your purchasing card
  • Make the charges taxable to you on your W2 if proper backup are not provided.

Travel Advances and General Reimbursements

The Finance Office reimburses for travel expenditures when appropriately documented with receipts. The Expense Report should be completed within 30 days of travel but not earlier than two weeks prior to travel with receipts attached except for incidentals and if using the Per Diem method of reimbursement. Original receipts are no longer required as the original receipt is scanned and attached to the expense reimbursements in Workday. Reimbursements received after 60 days will be taxable to the employee per IRS guidelines[1]. Please note: No reimbursements can be claimed for purchases that use gift cards or vouchers as the form of payment.

Appropriate receipts for out-of-pocket expenses are defined as:

Detailed receipts that must include payment confirmation and show form of payment, e.g. cash, check, visa, etc.

  • If the payment form is credit card, the receipt must show the last 4 digits of the card number. If the receipt does not show the last 4 digits of the card, a copy of the credit card bank statement will need to be provided. As we don’t require original receipts, we need to confirm that the charge was not paid for with a Pomona P card and that the receipt was not inadvertently paid previously on another reimbursement.
  • If payment form is personal check, a copy of the bank-cashed check must be provided.
  • For lodging, the folio is required in addition to the payment confirmation if not included on the folio.
  • For airfare, the itinerary is required in addition to the payment confirmation if not included in the itinerary.
  • If traveling on Pomona business and taking an extra leg for person travel, a copy of the cost of round trip must be provided at the time receipt is turned in to show the cost of the round trip of the business travel.
  • If traveling for research on a Federal grant and taking an extra leg for personal travel, only the travel to the research location or back from the research location will be reimburse, not the round trip per Federal guidelines

In preparation for scanning, reimbursement documents can be scanned together on one piece of paper or scanned individually whichever is preferred. We suggest consolidating receipts by cost center, grant or project in a separate PDF document to make it easier to review transactions. Fields on the expense report in Workday will be available for the needed documentation regarding attendees and business purpose. If anything is written on the receipt for any reason, please write legibly and in ink that will scan clearly.

Travel advances may be received by:

  • Creating a Spend Authorization in Workday and checking the ‘Cash Advance’ box

When travel advances are received, the Expense Report must be completed within 30 days of travel but not earlier than two weeks prior to travel of the end of travel and submitted in Workday. Reimbursements over 60 days will be taxable to the employee

  • If the Advance was more than the travel expenses, an Expense Report is completed in Workday selecting the created Spend Authorization. The Expense Report is completed, attaching the appropriate receipts. Once submitted, a check for the remaining amount which references the expense report number must be given to the Cashier to clear the Advance.
  • If the Advance was less than the travel expenses and funds are to be reimbursed to the traveler, an Expense Report is completed in Workday selecting the created Spend Authorization. The Expense Report is completed as usual, attaching the appropriate receipts. Once approved the funds will be reimbursed.

Reimbursement Maximums

Pomona College discourages employees from purchasing items for business-related purposes from personal funds if a Purchasing Card has been issued. Petty cash, purchase orders and purchasing cards are available to meet purchasing requirements. If all other methods of payment have been exhausted, however, reimbursement up to a maximum of $500 per occurrence is permitted. This policy applies to all reimbursements except for travel and travel-related expenses. All reimbursements should be submitted in Workday within 30 days of the purchase/travel.

Generally, vendors are willing to extend credit to the College. If the establishment of credit with a new vendor is required, the Accounts Payable Specialist is available to assist with this process.

For information regarding additional Finance policies, please see the Finance Office – Guide to Payment and Purchasing Processes on the Finances tab of My Campus Portal.


[1] It is understood that there may be times when more than 60 days is reasonable such as when there are illnesses, leaves, vacancies or when the employee is out of the country and doesn’t have access to the internet.