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Of course, all Bento for Business employees have Bento Cards. How else would we manage employee expenses? 

One way that we use them is to enjoy one of our most popular employee benefits, free lunch. Each weekday, we are authorized to spend $17.00 at restaurants. The limit resets each day, so we can’t save up our money and take a friend out to a fancy steakhouse lunch on Friday.

Having lunch together is nice. The Chicago office is small enough that we usually eat together in the kitchen. Invariably, someone buys French fries to share. We use the few minutes to catch up on our lives or the city’s most recent alligator sighting. It’s a nice, human break from our work of helping businesses and non-profit organizations manage employee expenses.

New employees have to wait for their cards to arrive, so during that week or so, their managers will set them up with a virtual card. The virtual card is then entered into Ritual, an app for placing pick-up orders that works with many great lunch spots near our office. When the regular card arrives, the virtual card can be shut off.

We also use virtual cards for the occasional office party. A card can be created to handle a pizza order, then turned off afterward. No one has to read off a card number over the phone. If a hacker or unscrupulous restaurant employee gets the number, it doesn’t matter, because the card is cancelled after the order. Our controller can relax and enjoy the party.

Many employees never use their card for anything but lunch. Because we have the cards, though, it is easy for our managers to give us spending responsibilities as needed. If a few Chicago employees need to visit our San Francisco office or attend a conference, their managers can set their cards to allow for hotel stays, meals, and transportation during their trip. We use the cards for employee business expenses that arise during the day, too. Around here, Bento Cards have been set for people to go to the post office to do a mailing to prospective customers, run out for fresh white board markers before a leadership team meeting, or cover sponsorship fees at a local networking event.

Although lunch is the best part of having a Bento Card when you work at Bento for Business, we employees also like that we don’t have to rely on our personal accounts to cover business expenses. Our managers like that they don’t have to wait for expense reports to be turned in to find out how much money was spent in different categories.

Bento for Business has a mission to reduce friction in managing business expenses. It works well for us; give it a try to see how it can work for your business, too.