By Carmen Stinson on Jan 25, 2019
3 min read
In a world where predictive technologies push the individual to what they like and want, your company’s travel policy must be informed clearly, backed by a good administration, and be reasonable and respectful to the travelers.
Corporate travel online booking competences have expanded in recent years, removing the differences between self-booking online, booking through suppliers directly, and travel agencies. Online booking tools provide fascinating motives for travel managers to work deeply to encourage its further adoption and discourage the practice of ‘rogue’ bookings (when travelers book as they prefer), because it’s no surprise that travelers prefer the streamlined experience of self-service and direct booking for routine travel, so this is where online booking tools for businesses come in handy.
So, what are the advantages of using approved online booking tools? What can it contribute to your business? In Forest Travel, we explain four of them:
- Greater compliance with company policies
Companies create travel policies to make trips more cost-effective, friendly, and truthful for employees to enjoy a true bleisure experience. And, streamlined pre-trip approval processes and rule-based logic help ensure them to book their trips in compliance with the policy, because, without an up-to-date travel authorization system, a part of the employees may take into account the policies, but others could find their way around them. An online booking tool helps every approval request to be executed to perfection.
- Reduced traveler spending
Travel spend can easily get out of control, especially for growing businesses that don’t have concrete policies in place. Compliant bookings will offer negotiated prices and follow cost-saving methods that are estimated in the company’s policy.
Besides, costs can be decreased through data analysis, by identifying when and why employees are avoiding your corporate travel policy, making random extra arrangements instead. Is this a discipline concern, or do your policies need to be processed to become more convenient? Consider that companies with flexible protocols have success when it comes to compliance and budgetary control.
- Duty of care
Having all bookings consolidated in one place proffers effortless employee location and communication whether during a crisis or to provide assistance in case of travel disruption.
It is important that you include in your online booking system the reservations made by e-mail, phone and on-site so that all are in the same system and that the availability calendar is always updated. A consolidated database is a resource of enormous benefit in a company if it is well-structured and accessible.
- Spend visibility
On any occasion that business travel is involved, there are many big and tiny costs surrounding it, thus it is important to develop strategies to save even more by gaining in-depth insight into how travelers are spending money. Also, cemented booking practices contribute to obtaining better supplier rates. An all-inclusive travel budget system confirms that everybody notices when the company card can be used and what is going to be repaid, making sure everyone is on the same page. Finished and tracked travel approvals also represent an important tool for inspecting financial records.
When it comes to implement your corporate travel policy, you can offer employees the most recent corporate booking technology. Align it with regular, formal trainings, and it will generate savings and happier travelers, additionally.
Lastly, Travel Managers could supply a link between the travel management company providing the technology and the employees who are using it. They will assist in the implementation and testing of the ever-changing booking tool, facilitating training and adoption.
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By: Carmen Stinson
Director, Global Corporate Travel Sales & Operations