Steering the Ship…Our New Virtual Team Lunch!

April 6, 2020 – Don Howren, President and COO

On the surface it didn’t strike me as anything unusual.  Friday seemed like just another day #workingfromhome.  This morning it hit me that it was really an example of our new reality which went like this: 

We decided to schedule a quick marketing team catch-up call on Friday.  No problem, we do this regularly.  Someone mentioned they wished we could do our random group lunch which we would do when everyone was in the office.  Then I thought – we can still do that online. 

So everyone ordered their lunch preference and had it delivered at noon by a delivery service of their choice.  Next, we initiated a Microsoft Teams call to recap our week, discuss actions and to-do’s for next week.  All the while checking out each other’s lunch.  It was like a ‘round the world’ food menagerie; we had Indian, Mexican, Mediterranean, Thai and American cuisine.  It was awesome – if we had done this at work we would have picked just one restaurant and would be limited to a single menu.  Now everyone ordered what they wanted.  Nice!

As we signed off the call we each took a photo of our receipt, uploaded it into our DocLink expense report workflow which automatically routed it for approval to the marketing director.  Using her phone, she approved the expense right away which initiated a schedule reimbursement.  All done in under an hour.

Think about it; we had an interactive marketing recap, a personalized lunch that was delivered to our homes, and DocLink to manage the entire transaction for our staff.  Many organizations are focused on managing obvious AP and purchasing paper challenges, but employee expenses are really ‘just another disbursement type’ for staff and not vendors.  And we were able to still manage this operation without being in the office. 

It was a simple yet compelling glimpse into our remote work life.  This kind of collaboration and workflow will become the new normal for businesses. 

And next time, I’m ordering Mediterranean!