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Robin von Covivio

Covivio operates a fully digitalized business travel management system thanks to Lanes & Planes. In this customer story, you will learn how the real estate company has structured its processes, minimized its credit card expenses and automated its approval processes.

"The advantage of Lanes & Planes is that EVERYTHING comes from one tool."

Robin Ringhardt
Digital Coordinator - Covivio


One of the largest real estate companies in Europe. Covivio is rediscovering spaces, combining work, travel and living and developing contemporary concepts for living together.

Covivio is one of the largest real estate companies in Europe. Whether office properties in Italy and France, hotels in many European countries or apartments and commercial units in Germany: Covivio is rediscovering spaces, combining work, travel and living and developing contemporary concepts for living together.

With five locations in Germany and others in France, Covivio’s employees are on the road a lot.

We spoke to Robin, Digital Coordinator at Covivio, to find out more about how they use Lanes & Planes and what benefits they derive from it.

Robin is responsible for the digitalization of processes in his company. He scrutinizes existing processes and optimizes them, especially the manual ones.

As the company grew, Robin became increasingly aware of the inefficiencies in the business travel processes. Frequent travelers booked their trips using their company credit card. For employees who rarely traveled, the HR department worked together with a travel agency. In addition, employees booked their train journeys via DB and hotels were reserved via the usual platforms such as Booking.com.

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In search of a solution

With the aim of digitizing travel management and speeding up work processes, Robin set out to find a suitable solution.

Although some of the employees were very experienced in organizing and booking trips and had already saved some hotels as favourites, the time required for booking was still too high. Thanks to the use of Lanes & Planes, the effort involved has been significantly reduced.


Regain control of travel expenses

The travel expense report in particular was a thorn in Robin’s side. It was carried out in the classic way, using Excel. There were even several Excel spreadsheets, which made a structured and clear travel expense report almost impossible.

Before becoming Digital Coordinator at Covivio, Robin was a consultant for the CFO. In this function, he accompanied the internal audit. He is therefore very familiar with the monthly ordeal of travel expense and credit card statements.

The use of direct debit has also significantly reduced the number and therefore the cost of company credit cards.
Printing out Excel sheets that had to be edited manually and then signed by hand was particularly annoying for Robin.

“Submitting documents on paper…that’s simply no longer up to date.”

"We had around 60 credit cards and have reduced them by around 50%"

Robin Ringhardt
Digital Coordinator - Covivio

Simplified travel expense report

At Covivio, the HR department is responsible for travel expense accounting and its verification. The complete digitization of travel expenses has meant that the department no longer has to enter anything manually. The data is all provided digitally after it has been checked and automatically uploaded via an interface with SAP. Searching through tedious sources of error in Excel is now a thing of the past with Covivio.

Covivio’s guidelines provide for a downstream check of travel bookings and their invoices, so sometimes up to a month passed between travel and payment. Now the digitalization of travel expense reports makes approval child’s play and can be issued promptly at the touch of a button.


Travel guidelines and permits

The approvals and respective confirmations of processes in travel management were also just annoying for Robin.
Managers often had to take a last look at the travel dates before making the final booking.

Thanks to Lanes & Planes, Covivio now does all this digitally, saving a lot of time and keeping an overview.

"Depending on the scope and duration of the trip, the travel expense report used to take up to 40 minutes. Now, thanks to the app, we're actually down to a maximum of 20 minutes, as there's no need to scan documents, for example, and the expense report doesn't have to be submitted separately on paper to the line manager. The workflow is now truly digital."

Robin Ringhardt
Digital Coordinator - Covivio

The result: fully digitalized travel management

Travel management now works smoothly at Covivo, says Robin.
Everything comes from just one tool, without breaking the system, and is therefore much faster and clearer.

Robin is one of the frequent travelers in his company and told us about his personal experience with the tool. Above all, the travel expense report and its organized overview help him the most. He always knows which costs have been incurred when and where and thus saves the additional credit card bill. Looking for invoices is no longer part of his everyday life.

Robin also found the constant switching back and forth between several systems to book trips exhausting. Booking in this way costs companies an average of 1.5 to 2 hours per trip – a huge amount of work!

With our door-to-door solution, Covivio has managed to reduce this to 15 minutes. Covivio employees now book all their trips themselves and have predefined travel guidelines in the system, so there are no more annoying approval and confirmation processes.

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Sonja Frohnhöfer
Sonja Frohnhöfer