“To keep every member of their staff focused on next-level patient care, Alivation needed a more innovative way to manage spending and expenses. With BILL Spend & Expense, they got automated expense reports, a seamless quickbooks integration, and forward-thinking financial processes.”
Founded by Dr. Walt Duffy in 1998, Alivation is a group of three innovative healthcare companies: Alivation Health, Alivation Pharmacy, and Alivation Research. They’re operated in part by other members of the Duffy family—including William Duffy, finance manager.
Though they have a full accounts receivable staff to process health insurance claims, William is the only member of the finance team. For him, solo expense management meant sifting through monthly charges on some 20 credit cards, classifying each expense by department or project—and wasting valuable time on paper receipts.
As William put it, “Collecting receipts was my number one—and most despised—responsibility.” But, having discovered a fraudulent credit card charge only 30 days after starting in his position, he also knew it was one of his most important roles.
Because Alivation is a family-run business, William’s mom Rosalie pitched in where she could. On average, she spent 20 hours each month tracking down receipts and asking spenders for details about every purchase. William then spent another five hours reviewing expenses and manually entering data into QuickBooks.
Knowing that Alivation needed a better way to manage expenses, William started exploring Concur software as a possible solution.
“Collecting receipts was my number one, and most despised, responsibility.”
What struck William first about Concur was its complexity. “From the trial,” he said, “it seemed like it was built in the nineties and hadn’t been updated.” It was also expensive. He said it felt like “a big investment in unfriendly software.”
Near the end of 2018, William read about the BILL Spend & Expense management platform in Morning Brew—an online business newsletter. When he reached out to request more information, he said “(Spend & Expense) customer service was extremely helpful from day one. The people were friendly and knowledgeable.”
After scheduling a demo, then evaluating Spend & Expense for several months, William put together a presentation about the platform for Alivation CEO Trevor Bullock. Because Spend & Expense is completely free to use, they agreed to try it during Q4—the busiest quarter for healthcare—before rolling it out to staff. After a successful trial run, they implemented Spend & Expense throughout all three Alivation companies in January 2019.
As William said, “(Spend & Expense) is what employees want and what corporate needs.” His favorite thing about Spend & Expense so far is a toss up between the friendly customer service, which he said “put (Spend & Expense) over the top,” and its friendly user interface. He also loves saving time on manual data entry with the seamless QuickBooks integration, as well as the ability to customize required fields for transactions.
“[BILL Spend & Expense] is what employees want and what corporate needs.”
According to William, “(Spend & Expense) is to credit card management what the iPhone was to communication. It didn’t create the space, it reinvented it.”
Since implementing Spend & Expense, William estimates Alivation has saved more than 20 hours each month in the finance department alone. They also earn rewards on Spend & Expense purchases, so they pay nothing for the platform and get rewarded just for using it.
Beyond the quantifiable benefits of Spend & Expense, William said having forward-thinking processes and digital receipts for better IRS preparedness are both “priceless.” And, because Spend & Expensemakes it easy to set spending limits and see transactions in real time, William is more “comfortable” in his ability to detect fraud because he doesn’t have to wait 30 days after a purchase to get statements and reconcile receipts.
Asked what Alivation would do without Spend & Expense, William said, “They would have to hire two people—one to replace me, and one to replace (Spend & Expense).” He said Spend & Expense has helped make Alivation a “lean and innovative company so we can retain top talent” while giving him “the time and peace of mind to focus on more innovative things outside of receipt management.”
“[BILL Spend & Expense] is to credit card management what the iPhone was to communication. It didn’t create the space, it reinvented it.”