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The future of business travel: building an effective travel policy

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Companies are shifting from trying to negotiate better contracts with suppliers towards concentrating more on finding new sources of savings shifting their employees' behavior.

This trend is also growing in the business travel management area and you can start to change and improve your corporate travel policy now if you wish to increase efficiency, keep costs low and employee satisfaction high.

We invite you to learn more about what you should focus on and what are the key elements towards an effective travel policy that will ensure your success in the future.

As you are looking forward to building the best travel policy for your company, here are some details you should keep in mind:

  • Think about the most important objectives your company has and be sure that the policy is designed in order to help you achieve goals: reduce costs, increase safety for your business travellers, etc.
  • Make sure your employees travel in comfort, have a pleasant trip and can stay focused on the reason they went on a business trip in the first place.
  • Give your employees the freedom to choose the right alternative for them while reminding them to keep costs under a certain threshold.
  • Make sure that every employee reads and is aware of the new travel policy, and offer support to increase compliance within your company.

The elements that help you build an effective travel policy 

Education

Not all business travellers are aware of how much pressure your travel manager is under when it comes to reducing travel costs. It should not only be the concern of your travel manager or travel team. You should educate all your travellers and help them understand the travel policy, guide them through inclusions, exclusions and exceptions, present the safety measures you took and your expectations or a desired behavior while travelling.  

Creativity

Your company needs a creative travel manager who is able to look for and find new sources of savings by improving processes, using data provided by travel management tools and software to correct unhealthy employee behavior and adjusting the travel policy when data shows it is the right thing to do.

You have very little influence on the external factors that influence travel costs such as discounts obtained from your supplier or the price of a flight ticket bought in advance, but internal factors are 100% under your control meaning there are always new ways to reduce costs and keep productivity high in your company.

Flexibility

Always remain open to new suggestions and alternatives when it comes to savings in corporate travel, especially from your employees. You might learn from them that for certain destinations, changing the airline or the hotel chain could bring you considerable savings.

Your employees represent the most valuable resource in your company, so you should always keep their comfort in mind when changing something related to their business trips.

Automation

Technology continues to change the ways in which your employees do their jobs. While some fear that they will be replaced by technology, others embrace it and realize how much time and energy they can save. They are happy to dedicate their working hours to a task that requires their soft skills, the kind of skills that technology will not replace any time soon.

With an automated travel management system, you can ensure that the travel policy is integrated into any process, that employees are aware of the rules in every task they fulfill through your software and that you can notify them regarding travel policy compliance even when they are away on their business trip via a mobile application.

Security

Using technology has its ups and downs when it comes to security: it gives you a lot of freedom, but you must always be confident that your information is being securely processed by the software solutions that you use for travel management. You must ensure that your employees are protected from fraud, hacking or theft, no matter where they are travelling. Be sure to communicate the measures you took to keep them safe while travelling and guide them in case of security problems.

Preparing your corporate travel policy for the future goes hand in hand with implementing an integrated travel and expense management solution. This will not only help you improve productivity and efficiency, but will also help you make decisions backed up by data and clear reports. Furthermore, you will be able to prove to your employees that your measures are justified to ensure transparency, especially if your are openly communicating the reasons behind any change in your travel policy.

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