Purchasing Cards


  • What is the "Pcard"?
  • Benefits
  • Program Overview - How it Works
  • Obtaining a Card
  • Getting Started

Using the Pcard

  • Preparing to Purchase
  • Credit Limits
  • Tax Exemption
  • Restricted Transactions
  • Receipt of Goods & Services
  • Returning Items
  • Transaction Record Keeping

Managing Transactions and Cards

    • Default Charges
    • Problematic Transactions
    • Cardholder Profile
    • Making Changes
    • Lost or Stolen Cards
    • Expiring Cards

Closing the Loop-Accountability

      • Proof of Purchase
      • Establishing Business Purpose
      • Internal Review
      • FYI - Administrative Actions

Additional Information

      • Extended Absence and Leave from Gettysburg
      • Termination of Employment
      • Insurances for Travelers
      • Foreign Travel Alert

Cardholder’s Guide March, 2015Introduction
Welcome to Gettysburg College’s corporate card (usually called “pcard”) program. The purpose of the program is to provide College personnel who are authorized to acquire goods and services on behalf of the College with an additional tool, complimenting existing processes, with which to conduct business within established guidelines and procedures. The program also provides for travel and entertainment in connection with College business. Several card options are available to best meet the cardholders' requirements.

The manual provides the guidelines for cardholders. A key element of the program is cardholders' clear understanding of their responsibilities. Please note: Either by signing a cardholder agreement or by using your College issued pcard you are agreeing to abide by all guidelines herein and as outlined in the Expense and Reimbursement Guidelines and Procurement Guidelines.

What Is The “Pcard”? Gettysburg's brand of corporate card is a VISA credit card issued by PNC Bank, administered by Financial Services and managed by cardholders with web-based software known as Intellilink.

Credit cards issued through our program differ from personal credit cards in several important ways:
1. The College assumes corporate liability even though cards are issued in individual's names. Use of the cards will not affect the cardholder’s personal credit history.
2. Each card is issued with specific purchasing limits and restrictions as detailed further below.
3. None of the College issued cards provide access to cash.
4. The purchasing card program enjoys enhanced fraud protection from PNC Bank.

To the cardholder:
1. Facilitates electronic commerce, phone and fax orders.
2. Eliminates the need to use personal funds followed by requests for reimbursement.
3. Provides means for reservations, guarantees and prepayment when necessary.
4. Accommodates faster delivery of goods and services.
5. Reduces departmental payables processes.

To the College:
1. Enables decentralized purchasing activities.
2. Decreases volume of reimbursements, invoices, and checks processed.
3. Improves reporting of the College's expenses.
4. Creates additional revenue for the College in the form of cash rebates on purchases.

To the VISA merchants:
1. Permits payment in as few as two business days.
2. Eliminates invoicing and collection activities.

Program Overview - How It Works

Employees who travel or purchase goods or services for the College can obtain a card with the approval of their department or division head. Five card types are available conforming with the College's procurement authority:

Type I - General Purchasing Card
*Traditional purchasing cards are issued to employees for long term continuous and varying use in the performance of their position responsibilities. Type I cards allow transactions with most VISA merchants; high risk or experientially fraudulent merchants have been blocked.
*Type I Low Limit Option Card = Fixed single transaction limit of $1000 and monthly limit of $5000
*Type I High Limit Option Card = Fixed single transaction limit of $5000 and monthly limit of $15000

Type II - Travel Card
*Issued to employees to facilitate business travel and guest relations. Type II cards allow transactions with merchants providing all modes of transportation, lodging, and dining.  They will also facilitate most conference registrations.
*Type II cards are  suitable for most employees whose position responsibilities do not include procurement of departmental goods and services.
*Type II Travel Cards = Fixed single transaction limit of $2000 and monthly limit of $10000

Type III - Special Purpose Card
*Special purpose purchasing cards are issued to individuals not in need of a long term account but with a need to accommodate expenses related to specific acquisitions, short term travel, and/or an event. Type III cards are the equivalent of a Travel Advance in credit form.
*Special purpose purchasing cards are a declining balance vehicle (credit is not revolving) issued for a fixed time period, not to exceed six months.
*The review and reconciliation of Type III accounts is generally supported in the cardholder's department.

Type IV - Department Card
*General purchasing cards are issued in the name of the department or a program and intended as a convenience account for multiple individuals for local purchases. Department cards are typically managed by one individual within the department.
*Type IV Department Card = Fixed single transaction of $300 and monthly limit of $1000.

Type V - Vendor Specific Card
*General purchasing cards are issued for the expressed use of managing orders/payments with particular vendors. Card profiles can vary based on transaction and dollar volume.

A Card Application is submitted to the card administration team, a unit within Financial Services, for issuance. A new account takes about 2 weeks to process. The cardholder is provided reference materials, including an agreement which is delivered to the card administration team when notified their card is ready. Cardholders activate their card with VISA and may then initiate purchases. When a purchase is made, the transaction is systemically validated against the pre-set limits and restrictions established for the account and approved or declined at the point-of-sale. Cardholders retain documentation for each transaction on their account and verify transactions and assign correct budget codes in Intellilink. All transaction data is swept monthly and posted to the general ledger. Cardholders submit monthly statements of their account activity together with transaction documentation to Financial Services.

Getting Started
Cardholders will receive a card envelope with inserts providing useful Chip & PIN details and some information for travelers. A sticker on the new card will remind new cardholders that their card must be activated before it can be used. Voice prompts will walk cardholders through the required steps. A PIN is set up during this initial call as well. Maintaining the PIN is the entirely the cardholder's responsibility. Financial Services does not have access to PIN data and cannot provide support with this security measure.

A handout provided with the new card will call out any recent updates and also card administration team contact information.

Using a Card
Merchants presently accepting VISA as a form of payment for goods or services should readily accept the College's purchasing card. While actual use of the College card closely resembles using one's personal credit card, be aware that the card is a corporate card and some merchants may have to take several extra steps at their terminals in order to process the transaction.

Preparing to Purchase
The card may be used to purchase in person at a vendor site, by phone, by fax or online. Merchant terminals may differ. When placing your order you should be prepared to supply the following information:
1. Identification as a Gettysburg College employee
2. Cardholder name
3. Individual card number
4. Expiration date of the card
5. 3 digit security code on back of card
6. PIN
7. Tax-exempt status and number
8. Shipping address
9. Billing address: At all times use: 300 N. Washington St.
Other information necessary to complete the transaction

Credit Limits
As you initiate a purchase please be mindful that your purchasing card has two pre-set limits. Your single transaction limit is the cap or ceiling on any one individual purchase. Your monthly transaction limit determines your spending limit for any one month. These fixed parameters were established by the cardholder, and approved by the supervisor, upon application and should reflect the cardholder's usual business requirements.

Expenses in excess of cardholder's limits that must by paid by a credit card, can be processed by contacting the card administration team in Financial Services.

Tax Exemption
Gettysburg College is exempt from a grouping of taxes imposed by Pennsylvania, the most commonly known one being sales tax. Our sales tax exemption number is embossed on the card for convenience. Our Pennsylvania Sales, Use and Hotel Occupancy Tax Exemption Certificate may be copied and given to any vendor requiring it.

Gettysburg College is also exempt from similar taxes in other states when the goods or services are purchased for use in that state. Please utilize all available exemptions whenever possible.

Restricted Transactions
There are several categories of potential purchasing card transactions which are restricted. They apply to all cards issued under this program.

The first category is transactions not adhering to the College's policies regarding allowable expenses. (See Expense and Reimbursement Guidelines) Personal use of the card is strictly prohibited under these rules. Also herein, cardholders will be accountable for inappropriate use of institutional funds and of their card. College corporate cards may not be physically presented to a merchant for payment by any individual whose name is not embossed on the card. Nor can merchants be asked to split a transaction to circumvent the single transaction limit on the account.

The second category is specific transaction types that a College card should not be used for - charitable contributions other than benevolences, gift cards or gift certificates, fuel for an employee's personal vehicle, and any purchase that is both business and personal (typically combined at the point of sale such as personal preference travel upgrades or partner travel).

The third category is "hard-coded" transactions. The College has blocked card usage with some groups of VISA merchants for our own protection. Card transactions with vendors registered with VISA under the following classifications will be rejected at the point of sale:
*Financial Institutions ***Please note that cards in the College's program do not have any cash access privileges.***
*Insurance payments
*Real estate rental payments
*Judicial fees
*Medical and legal services
*Numerous Other Specialty/Consumer/Retail Merchants

Receipt of Goods & Services
The cardholder is responsible for ensuring receipt of goods and services and for initiating and resolving problems pertaining to the transaction when the purchasing card is used.

Returning Items
Items should be returned directly to the vendor by whichever means you have agreed upon. You should ask the vendor to provide copies of your credit slips to you. The cardholder is responsible for ensuring that proper credit is posted for any returned item(s).

Transaction Record Keeping
The authority to purchase includes the responsibility to obtain adequate documentation for all card transactions. Documentation includes both printed material from the merchant relative to the details of the transaction as well as a statement regarding its business purpose. This information is a requirement of the program as explained in further detail below.

Managing Transactions & Cards
Managing your card transactions can be likened to personal online banking. It is simple and the software is rather intuitive. Each time you use your card the transaction will post to an account which has been established for you in Intellilink. You will have been provided with access information when you pick up your card. You are responsible for logging into your account periodically and taking one or more of the following steps:
1. Acknowledging that the transaction was initiated by you
2. Verifying that it posted in the correct amount
3. Assigning the correct budget codes to the transaction
4. Safekeeping the supporting documentation for the transaction

Intellilink supports your due diligence with tools to set up email reminders when your account has activity requiring your attention. These reminders are helpful but are subject to occasional delivery failure. Your proactive attention to your account is the best practice.

Default Charges
Each transaction posting to your card account is assigned to a particular department general ledger number, determined by which area the cardholder works, and the transaction will also be preassigned to a particular account code based on the nature of the merchant's business. Preset default codes are embedded for convenience but they may not be as accurate as we would like them to be. Please contact the card administration team to improve or correct the presettings. All transactions should be viewed to ensure correct allocation to the appropriate budget.

Problematic Transactions
Most problems with orders and billing can be resolved by the cardholder contacting the vendor and monitoring the account for corrective action. In the event a problem such as an erroneous charge, failure to receive goods, altered amounts, credits due not processed, duplicate charges, or suspected fraud cannot be resolved at the cardholder level, the cardholder may dispute a charge and thereby engage PNC Bank to initiate an action against the merchant. This process is an important safeguard to the College against fraudulent activity. It is not to be misused for usual transactions that derailed for internal reasons.

Cardholder Profile/Making Changes
Your Intellilink account and profile contain information about your account balances, limits, defaults, etc. You may need to check this record from time to time. Cardholders may need to modify their card account for various reasons, including a name, department, or GL default change. Explanatory email to pcard@gettysburg.edu will attend to a routine matter for you. In the event of an emergency, please call a member of the card administration team. The current contact information is on the Purchasing Card home page and with your start-up materials.

Lost or Stolen Cards
In the event of a lost or stolen purchasing card, cardholders should immediately notify PNC Bank (1-800-865-4039) and the card administration team. A replacement card will be issued immediately and sent directly to the card administrators who will contact the cardholder to pick up the new card.

Expiring Cards and Replacement Cards *
All renewal cards will be sent automatically to the card administration team several weeks prior to the expiration date of the card, who will contact the cardholders directly to exchange their cards.

Direct Billing Relationships
If the account number or expiration date on a card changes, the cardholder is responsible for updating the accounts receivable records of any vendor with whom a direct billing relationship has been established. Failure to do so may result in the inconvenience of declined transactions which may lead to an interruption of services.

Closing the Loop - Accountability
The purchasing card program is on a monthly billing cycle, ending on the last day of each month. Email notification is sent to cardholders to remind them that they have approximately one week after the close of the billing cycle to complete the reconciliation of all transactions for the previous month. This message also advises cardholders of the pending "download" date. On this date all of the transaction data is swept to the general ledger and can no longer be modified in Intellilink.

All charges from all accounts are paid by Financial Services from a central bill. All cardholders are required to submit a specific monthly report, prepared within Intellilink as described in the training materials, together with transaction documentation, to Financial Services by the 12th of the following month.

Proof of Purchase
The authority to purchase includes the responsibility for maintaining adequate documentation at the source of the transaction. Whether a purchase is made in person or via telephone, internet, fax, or mail, the cardholder must obtain vendor produced evidence of the purchase. Original documentation must support the legitimate business purpose of all transactions made with the purchasing card. Documentation must include the name of the supplier, location, date and dollar amount. The following are examples of supporting documentation:
*detailed cash or sales receipts
*packing slips with a dollar amount
*subscription or dues forms
*conference registration forms
*online ordering or booking confirmations
*repetitive postings of long term contracted services should be supported with a copy of the contract at its inception and entries in the Narrative Details field as mentioned below, or by separate memo

For purchases where no receipt is generated (e.g., flowers ordered by phone), a complete explanation in the Narrative Details field will suffice, or by separate memo.

Establishing Business Purpose
Cardholders are also responsible for ensuring that the College business purpose for each transaction is clear from the proof of purchase paperwork, or that notations regarding the College business purpose are written on the documentation or added to the Narrative Details field within Intellilink.

Internal Review
All cardholder transactions are subject to monthly review by the card administration team. After the close of the billing cycle, cardholders are required to prepare and print the requested Intellilink report, attach proof of purchase for each listed transaction with business purpose duly noted, and submit records packets by the 12th of the following month. Records packets will not be returned to cardholders. Cardholders will be contacted if records packets are incomplete and records packets will be returned for resolution if any of the following are presented:
1. File is unworkable as submitted. It should be organized chronologically in accordance with the monthly statement of transaction activity.
2. The monthly report is not included. This report must be printed and submitted.
3. Original documentation not provided. Always obtain supporting paperwork wherever possible.
4. Business purpose is not provided or is not clear from the documentation. You will be asked to add notations to any tagged items within your packet.
5. Cardholder reimbursements for accidental personal use of a College card must be made within the same month and a copy of the receipt given by the College’s Cashier must be provided with the monthly report packet.
6. Packet does not include evidence that the College was reimbursed from a third party as the records indicate it should have been.
7. A credit needs to be obtained from a merchant. This may be excessive sales tax, billing error, etc.
8. A list of attendees for meals or events is not included.
9. Supervisor's approval for an identified transactions is required but not provide with packet.

FYI - Administrative Actions
The card administration team is guided by standard operating procedures applied consistently to all cardholders. Cardholders will receive an email notification during the first week of the month reminding them that their records for the previous month must be submitted by the 12th. Cardholders who cannot meet the time frame for a particular month are to provide notice of delay to the card administration team.

The card administration team is authorized to act as follows to manage program compliance:

Procedural Infractions
*1st - Overdue submission or response - Notice to cardholder of suspension until remedied
*2nd - Overdue submission or response - Notice to cardholder of suspension until remedied/copy to supervisor
*3rd - Overdue submission or response - Notice to cardholder of account termination

Policy Infractions (i.e. personal, misuse)
*1st - Contact employee requesting immediate correction with notice of suspension until remedied
*2nd - Contact employee requesting immediate correction with notice of suspension until remedied/memo to supervisor and HR documenting infraction
*3rd - Contact employee requesting immediate correction and notice of account termination (copy to supervisor and HR)/full disclosure to supervisor

Additionally, despite timely submission, cardholders whose packets are repeatedly rejected are subject to suspension or termination of privileges.

Cardholders are reminded that the terms and conditions of the Cardholder Agreement are binding.

Additional Information

Extended Absence and Leave from Gettysburg
Cardholders should notify the card administration team in the event of extended travel when they need to use the card for college business but will be unable to meet monthly submission requirements. Upon the cardholder's return to the College, all reconciliations, budget transfers, and records should be updated and submitted.

Cardholders on leave from the College, the nature of which does not include College business, should notify the card administration team of departure and return dates so that the account may be deactivated as a safeguard.

Termination of Employment
It is the responsibility of the cardholder to return their card to the College immediately upon notice of termination of employment with partial month's records packets. Some employment circumstances may require a cardholder to keep their account active until their departure date. Notice to the card administration team will avoid premature closure of an account.

Insurances for Travelers
All VISA corporate cards issued to College employees are accompanied by various pamphlets containing information pertaining to various insurances and benefits to which cardholders are entitled. They include:
*Travel Accident - $200,000
*Trip Delay Reimbursement - $300
*Hotel/Motel Burglary - $1,000
*Lost Luggage Reimbursement - $3,000
*Travel and Emergency Assistance Services

Please review the enclosures for more information.

Foreign Travel Alert
Our corporate card partner and issuing bank, PNC Bank, is mindful of and concerned with growth in international credit card fraud. When it occurs, it is much more difficult to resolve than domestic transactions and, resolution notwithstanding, travelers can encounter difficult problems. Accordingly, all cardholders intending to travel internationally on College business are asked to call PNC Bank Customer Service 1-800-685-4039 to advise account managers of plans so foreign transactions will be allowed to process without verbal approval from the cardholder or the card administration team. Additionally, travelers should always have an alternate method of payment available to them. Lastly, traveling cardholders are asked to utilize web access to review their card activity online to ensure validity of all postings.