Are these the strangest employee expenses ever?

by Emily Douglas18 Jul 2018

Business expenses are always to be cleared at management’s discretion – and can be revoked if HR departments deem the claim to be too outlandish.

A report from Allstar Business Solutions uncovered some rather unusual expenses bold employees tried to slip past their HR leaders. After interviewing 1,000 workers, one quarter of staff said they charged their organization an additional 20% every time they submitted a claim.

And, despite the fact this practice is completely illegal, almost half said they didn’t think they were doing anything untoward.

So, why are employees being so deceitful when it comes to their business expenses? Well, according to this research, 40% of workers did it because they felt underpaid in their roles; with a further third believing they were just following company practice.

“Not only is it costing individual companies, it is also having a much bigger impact on our wider economy as a whole and people don’t seem to care that it is both dishonest and illegal,” explained Paul Baker, vice president of customer management at Allstar Business Solutions.

“We found that 80% spend between one to two hours a month working on their expenses claims each month. Those hours spent processing could be better spent working on more productive tasks.”

Eight strange claims that were submitted to HR leaders included:

1. Flowers
2. Alcohol for personal use
3. Haircuts
4. Home improvements
5. Personal groceries
6. Personal parking fines
7. Meals which weren’t business related
8. Hotel breaks with the family

What’s the strangest expenses claim you’ve come across as a HR practitioner? Tell us in the comments.


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  • by HRBP 18/07/2018 10:42:32 AM

    I've seen a Dishwasher, Jewry, Case's of Beer, Groceries for a BBQ, Excessive expensive snacks, and I had an employee tell me they could purchase anything they wanted at the airport provided they had not passed through customs because they were still technically traveling!

  • by Simon McCoy 18/07/2018 11:02:41 AM

    I once had to inform a senior manager that claiming for new carpet in his home was not something the company would pay for.

  • by Martha 18/07/2018 1:41:17 PM

    I had a manager claim for the boarding kennel for his dog because he wasn't able to take the dog with him when he traveled.

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