[LGM] Update on reimbursement process for 2014

Louis Desjardins louis.desjardins at gmail.com
Sat Jan 25 09:42:45 PST 2014

2014/1/25 Michael Schumacher <schumaml at gmx.de>

> On 25.01.2014 12:47, Louis Desjardins wrote:
> Hi Louis,

Hi Michael,

> > a) For the return ticket to the airport (which I think is the only case
> > that could occur as we wouldn’t reimburse a taxi or a costlier shuttle
> > and people travelling by train will be at walking distance), I guess
> > it’s possible to buy a round-trip ticket. And here we speak of 4-6 €.
> note that some people prefer to not use trains in foreign countries or
> cities - for various reasons: fear of getting lost, safety concerns,
> general uneasiness with public transport. They may arrive also at
> unusual hours, for example, where the audience in these options is hard
> to tolerate.

That’s a good point.

> I can understand that you want to want to prevent spending too much on
> this part of trip, especially if there are multiple options for
> transport. It is just that some people might take this into
> consideration - a 35 euros cab ride they have to cover themselves may
> not prevent them from attending by itself, but it'll add up (and I'm not
> referring to money alone).
> It may help a bit if the ticket and trip that will be reimbursed is made
> as clear as possible - maybe someone from the locals can help, and a
> "get this ticket for x euros, take that train in that direction,
> disembark at station to get to the venue" is specified.

This would be a very good info to put on the website.

To the local organisers: can we put that on the to-do list to be done a
couple weeks prior to arrival?

> > b) Access to a scanner is a good idea but most people use their phone or
> > their camera to "scan" their documents.
> Maybe. Please do a few test runs of the reimbursement form when used
> from phone browsers. It seems to work in general, but I didn't try to
> submit anything. Make sure that the average quality is sufficient for
> your needs, unless this has been well tested last time already.

This was tested over years and works well. I can hardly remember if we had
one or two cases where the picture would not frame the whole ticket (!) and
had to be redone! ;-)

> > c) Closing on the last day allows us to announce at the closing meeting
> > what to expect as a percentage of their expenses. Hopefully, 100% like
> > previous years, but we make no promises!
> Depending on how much that is, you're going to send people home with a
> feeling that they will have to cope with only x% of reimbursement.
> Of course, this has to be balanced with the uncertainty of not knowing
> how much will be reimbursed at all, but I'm not sure if this is what
> attendees may want to be reminded about at exactly this time...
> Announce that you want to do this as early as possible, and do not give
> attendees the impression that it may be their fault it can't be done if
> they are unable to hand in their documents in time (see below, too).
> And... um.. how are you going to announce how much will be reimbursed,
> if the form is going to be online until 23:59:59, but the closing talk
> will be earlier? This is as if you have an implicit deadline set at e.g.
> noon of that day.

Good point. I was thinking that unless we’d be *very* tight on budget, we
could announce something nonetheless because we’d have some money left for
the next year. If it was too tight, then no announcement. As we get more
input from the sponsors and as the Pledgie campaign really takes-off, we’ll
approach the comfort zone!

> > Again, I thank you for your input and I hope to read your further
> comments.
> >
> > Opening the form for an extra week should not hurt that much. My own
> > enthusiasm at solving that issue led me to that idea!
> I understand that you want to put some mild pressure on people, to help
> them to avoid procrastination. At the same time, the "submit until that
> date, or else" message this form sends right now may make some people
> unsure - especially if they know that they will e.g. be unable to
> provide the documents until after a few additional days, or have time
> constraints - maybe have to leave LGM early to attend another obligation?

I get your point. I’ll make that as comfortable and welcoming as possible
(even through mild pressure!). I thought it was already but you raise a
good point.

> Please make it obvious that they can contact you with such issues. In
> particular, make sure that there are links to the contact page in the
> relevant section (right now there is only a "see contacts" text there.

Good eye! :-)

> On the contacts page, please indicate that your mail address is
> spam-proofed, what people have to do to make it work, and that the
> +1xxxx thing after it is your phone number. Please specify whether the
> ext. means people can and have to dial it, or whether they'll have to
> ask a dispatcher to put them through to this extension - I assume the
> former, but was wondering why it is written in this format.

I can do that as well but it’s the first time that I am aware of this.
I was not aware that this format would not be readily understandable.
Are you sure I need to explain that the email is spam-proofed? Anyway, I
can add this info, no issues.

Finally, thanks a lot for your input. I will extend for one week after LGM
leaving room for most of the people and will add a sentence to make it
clear that if for some reason this delay is too tight, people only have to
contact me directly and attach their documents. For the record, I’ll file
the form myself from the admin side.

Please get back to me if anything. We still have time for polishing the
edges and this is also why I started to work on this at this point in time.

And don’t hesitate to correct my phrasing where it needs to be!



> --
> Regards,
> Michael
> GPG: 96A8 B38A 728A 577D 724D 60E5 F855 53EC B36D 4CDD
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