In a state as unique as Alaska, where many places are only accessible by airplane, the logistics of running a business can be tricky. And when your business is all about connecting those remote locations to each other and the rest of the world, it can be even trickier.
Perfect Alaska travel companion
Just ask GCI, which provides phone, cable and Internet service to communities around the state. To keep customers happy and stay competitive in the telecommunications market GCI must continually expand and maintain services and quickly fix problems. But what happens when a worker gets to a remote job site and needs unexpected materials quickly? They can’t just come back to home base and pick them up. And they can’t wait for the company to send them money to pay for local supplies. So what do they do? They use the one tool that can fix the problem: First National’s Corporate MasterCard®.
“The corporate card allows our employees to purchase materials without having to wait for us to do a wire transfer or cut a check. They can keep moving forward on the job to ensure our customers receive the best possible service,” said Chief Accounting Officer Lynda Tarbath.
GCI employees also use the corporate card to purchase equipment and materials for projects and office supplies. But Tarbath says the biggest use of the Corporate MasterCard® is for travel expenses.
“From employees going out to rural areas to repair equipment to those going to the Lower 48 for training and conferences, GCI employees travel a lot,” said Tarbath.
“All these people have to purchase airline tickets and pay for their hotel, so having the card is a convenient way to do that without the employee having to wait to be reimbursed,” said Accounts Payable Supervisor Jane Martin.
Cost control through flexibility
Beyond the quick access to funds, both Martin and Tarbath agree that one of the most important features of the Corporate MasterCard® is the flexibility managers have to control every aspect of the card’s use, from the spending limits to where and how the card is used. This is important for a company that has more than 300 corporate cards, 200 of which are active all the time.
“When you have that many cards out there, being able to control the spending limits really helps,” said Tarbath.
Customer service links it all together
On top of all the features that the Corporate MasterCard® offers, there is the benefit of local customer service. Martin says GCI employees rarely have issues with the corporate cards and if they do, First National is always there to help.
“We’ve been very happy with our experience with First National’s Corporate MasterCard® since we started using it in 2001. From day one, the service was great,” said Tarbath.
With its many cost control options, convenient and local customer service, First National’s Corporate MasterCard® is keeping GCI linked to a no-hassle source of purchasing power, so GCI can focus on continuing its commitment to connect Alaska to the rest of the world.
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