Corporate Travel Management News and Tips

Revolutionize Your Travel Policy with a Travel Management Company

June 30, 2019 | For Travel Managers, For Travelers

Revolutionize Your Travel Policy with a Travel Management Company

A July Global Travel Forecast report showed that hotel prices in 2019 are expected to rise by 3.7% on average, while flight costs are projected to rise by 2.6%.

This means businesses should be prepared to spend more on corporate travel in 2019. And if your company has an outdated travel policy, expect to spend even more.

It’s no secret that the modern employee has access to a range of travel vendors, with the ability to conveniently book online. If you have an unclear travel policy that doesn’t state preferred vendors or whether employees can book on their own, they have an excuse to do what they want. The problem with out-of-policy bookings is that if reporting is spotty, it’s hard to track spending data.

The good news is that a travel management company (TMC) will have on-staff experts that live and breathe travel trends, which means they can update your policy to make it current and competitive.

Here, we’re going to break down the various aspects that cause travel policy to be treated as an afterthought by many companies and the issues that come with this negligence.

What’s wrong with an outdated travel policy?

One common misconception is that a travel policy is set in stone once it’s written. However, an outdated policy will lead to the following challenges:

● Human error – This can range from errors made during booking or when completing expense reports. One misplaced decimal point and you may find your company with lots of money lost due to a flawed process.
● Lowered Employee Morale – A long and tedious process of making travel arrangements can cause employees to lose heart and make them feel like they are being asked to run around in circles.
● Unwarranted Delays – Delays occur with form filling, approvals, disbursements, and reimbursements. This can lead to an employee spending out-of-pocket and feeling frustrated when they don’t get reimbursed. This can even lead to delays in scheduled business trips, resulting in lost revenue.

These challenges will indefinitely cost your company money, which is why you should rely on the expertise of a travel management company. When it comes to updating your policy, a TMC will help you:

● Create and streamline processes
● Introduce helpful, modern technology
Improve traveler safety
● Reduce the chances of fraud
● Save money

Issues That Keep Travel Managers from Updating Their Policies

Many travel managers aren’t able to utilize tools that can help improve travel management for their company. Here are a few challenges that prevent them from updating their policy.

● It is the norm – like they say, old habits are hard to break. This is one of the reasons why policies are seldom updated. When it comes to habits travel managers have developed over the years concerning corporate travel, they tend to stick to what they are used to rather than to find new ways to improve on an old system.
● They don’t have enough (or any) data – the lack of data makes it difficult for travel managers to suggest changes since they don’t have the information they need to back them up. Without figures on paper, stakeholders will find it hard to see the need for change.
● Balancing corporate interests with traveler satisfaction – at the end of the day, a travel manager needs to satisfy both the traveler and the company paying for the trip. This can be a difficult balancing act that usually ends with traveler satisfaction taking the back seat.
● Knowing how to use specific technology– With all the tools to choose from, it sometimes seems easier to stick with what’s comfortable. And without proper guidance from a TMC, training your employees can be a challenge.

When You Should Update Your Policy

The level of update your travel policy needs depends on how and when it was created, as well as its inclusions and exclusions.

Still on the fence about updating your T&E rules? Changes are necessary when a policy:

Lacks Flexibility

When a travel policy is too rigid, it gives travel managers a hard time satisfying both the company and the traveler. This also results in poor compliance and more work spent in figuring out the minutiae of each travel requirement.

Feels Generic and Non-Specific

Not all travel needs are the same, which is why a one-size-fits-all solution won’t work. This does not stop companies from using a cookie cutter solution for all travel requirements, however. This becomes a problem for the traveler and the manager.

Doesn’t Balance Everyone’s Needs

Management is usually concerned with cutting costs while a traveler is concerned with safety and comfort. Striking the perfect balance between these two can be very difficult to achieve without the support of a TMC.

Makes Employees Unhappy

Most corporate travel policies focus primarily on the bottom line, which likely results in unhappy employees. This affects employee engagement, and in turn, client satisfaction.

Based on Negative Reinforcement

This can also affect how an employee behaves while traveling since this focuses on what not to do instead of what can be done. Travelers who make mistakes in tracking expenses often find difficulties in getting their reimbursements.

Is Difficult to Navigate

When a traveler does not know how to book in compliance, they are often forced to book their own trips. This becomes a source of frustration for both the employee and management. It can be solved with a platform that allows for easy requests and improved compliance.

What Adelman Travel Can Do for You

Here at Adelman, we value efficiency and cost savings but not at the expense of the traveler experience and simplicity. We aim to help our clients wherever we can when it comes to process from providing sample policies to a full review and analysis of your travel policy.
With this industry knowledge, we can help you by:

● Showing you the innovations and ideas that you won’t realize all on your own
● Update and tweak your policies to meet both your bottom line and your employees’ needs
● Provide you with the right platform for your very specific corporate travel requirements
● Offer you cost-saving deals via our partnerships with suppliers
● Give you updated information on travel dos and don’ts, depending on current events
● Provide you with information and guidelines for travel to specific parts of the world
● Help change traveler behavior with simple tweaks to the company’s site or with the use of a new platform
● Reduce overspending and mistakes with alerts that inform employees of their limits and errors in the booking process
● Balance cost and employee satisfaction by focusing on both sides of the coin

These are just a few of the things that a travel management company like Adelman Travel can do for your business. To find out more, give us a call at (800) 248-5562 or contact us here.