For businesses with frequently travelling personnel, managing business travel may be a difficult issue. There are several moving components to keep track of, from booking hotels and flights to monitoring spending and making sure that policies are followed. Any firm with a mobile workforce must have a well-thought-out travel management program. This blog offers helpful advice on how to set up and manage a productive travel management system for your company.
Establishing a Travel Policy
Any firm should have a detailed set of travel policies that all workers must adhere to. To maintain uniformity, a travel policy should include requirements for booking windows, authorized modes of transportation, and acceptable housing. To reduce expenditures, the policy should also include spending caps, such as daily meal prices and luggage fees. It is necessary to specify the documentation processes, including the types of receipts required and who authorizes expenditure reports. In order to keep tourists safe, the policy should also take duty of care factors like emergency contacts as well as health protocols into account. A company may encourage compliance with standards and streamline the reimbursement process by putting in place a common travel policy and communicating it to every employee.
Selecting a Travel Management Company
It’s crucial to think about using a travel management firm rather than letting staff book on their own when planning business trips. These special platforms provide complete travel management solutions. Due to huge booking numbers, they are able to negotiate lower rates with significant airlines, and hotels, as well as rental car companies. One of the major advantages of using the travel management firm is that your workers may receive 24/7 professional travel help from the time they schedule their travels until they return. Additionally, they combine invoicing so that your company receives a single statement each month with itemized expenditures. Additionally, travel management companies keep track of all reservations and submit any required cost reports on your guests’ behalf. This degree of assistance also liberates internal resources. Most significantly, they may offer thorough reporting of trip information and analytics to support program evaluation.
Implementing an Online Booking Tool
To consolidate the trip booking process, an online booking platform must be implemented. A solid booking tool enables staff to look for, compare, and reserve hotels and flights all in one location. By only displaying authorized travel, it ensures that reservations adhere to corporate standards. The platform allows staff members to examine prospective travel information, make digital expenditure reports, and manage current bookings. The program smoothly connects with banking systems, making it possible to pay for travel and report on it in an efficient manner. Access is made easier for travelers by using single sign-on. It’s crucial to train staff members on how to plan, manage, and expense trips using the platform.
Managing Expense Reports
Any program for travel management must include the handling of expense reports. After returning from a trip, travelers should be compelled to submit cost reports within a specific amount of time (for example, seven days). An itemized breakdown of costs organized by date and kind should be included in the reports. The permissible formats for sending receipts as well as reports, whether online, through a mobile app, or on paper, should also be included in the guidelines. The approval process must also be well defined, including who authorizes spending for each department or travel. Additionally, the deadlines for compensation must be understood by both approvers and travelers. To facilitate this, reminders sent out through email on a regular basis can help to promote compliance.
Duty of Care Considerations
A significant component of the duty of care is ensuring the well-being, security, and safety of traveling personnel. Companies should gather the family and travel management company (TMC) emergency contact information for each passenger. In the event of an emergency, travel health insurance as well as medical evacuation coverage are also essential. To get information on locations throughout the world, businesses should invest in security and risk advising services. Programs for teaching employees about travel safety also aid in making them aware of potential high-risk locations and circumstances. It’s crucial to have crisis response strategies and procedures in place in case an incident happens. Utilizing a TMC’s duty of care resources offers round-the-clock emergency assistance. Using apps or booking systems to track personnel locations can aid response operations. Processes are kept optimized for handling any problems that may develop, with the help of regular evaluations.
Analyzing Travel Program Performance
Regularly evaluating the effectiveness of your company’s travel program is crucial. You should gather information on numerous important KPIs in collaboration with your travel management provider. This covers savings from negotiated prices as well as booking compliance rates in comparison to direct reservations. The most popular providers, and routes, as well as destinations, should also be noted. Additionally, have a look at the departure and arrival on-time performance. Gather data on journeys that were postponed or altered as well. Analyze the average cost of a trip per department and passenger. Lastly, look at spending patterns over time. Compare these data to your program’s key performance indicators. This will assist you in locating possible cost-saving opportunities, process enhancements, or training requirements. Regular reporting of this data helps stakeholders stay informed and supports the case for the program’s usefulness.
For organizations, putting in place a disciplined travel management program has tremendous advantages. It facilitates business processes for traveling staff and financial teams, from assuring policy adherence to obtaining cost efficiencies as well as duty of care. Any organization can manage business travel efficiently with the proper TMC partner, internet resources, and procedures in place.