Corporate Travel Management Software and Travel Administrators: Friends or Foes?

The advent of artificial intelligence based automation is bringing lot of changes in nearly all aspects of business and some areas of business are more rife than others for disruption. Corporate travel is also one such area where AI based business travel process automation finds very interesting use cases.
From transactional use cases such as automatic travel planning, travel policy compliance, automatic travel booking, automatic expense filing to more analytics based use cases such as insights into costs incurred due to travel policy violations and suggestions for improvement in travel policy.
When so much automation is possible with the help of technology, it is understandable that corporate travel managers might look at technology as an enemy which is trying to make them redundant. Some of them argue that technology cannot capture or understand the needs of their employees or that it’s a domain which is run on relationships with travel inventory providers like airlines, hotels and taxi operators. Therefore, many of them tend to see travel management software as a threat or simply disregard it as just another fancy toy.
So, are these two out there for a duel unto death of one of them? I would like to argue otherwise. I believe that Travel Management Software and Corporate Travel Managers will augment the capabilities of each other. The smart software solutions will make the job of travel managers much more meaningful by relieving them of mundane work like
1. Booking flights and hotels
2. Following up with travel agencies for cancellations and reschedulings
3. Forwarding ticket details to business travellers
4. Ensuring tickets booked are in compliance with the policy
5. Preparing reports
Instead, they can leave these mundane tasks to the software and focus on much more value adding activities such as:
1. Negotiating better rates with travel vendors
2. Aanlyzing data to understand patterns and get insights
3. Re-evaluate travel policy
4. Find avenues of making travel more convenient for the employees while cutting the costs
5. Instituting incentive programs for employees to voluntarily select inexpensive options
In this way, Travel Managers can expand their roles to become business partners rather than mere gate keepers and perform tasks which require human ingenuity and skills.

Written by-

Manish Kataria

About the author-

I am CEO of Traveo Soft Pvt Ltd which is an Artificial Intelligence based corporate Travel & Expense Management Software.

Traveo is automating Business Travel & Expense for enterprises in-turn helping them in optimizing spends on business travel. Traveo optimizes the entire travel while ensuring that the chosen options are cost effective, compliant with company policy and convenient for the employees as well as lot of incentive based programs to make employee’ , Travel Manager, HR, Admin & Finance folks happy.

If you want to know more about the interesting things that we do to make business travel hassle free for corporate and their employee feel free to contact me at manish@traveosoft.com

Importance of policy compliance for corporate travel

Corporate travel policies are critical on the grounds since they enable organisations to control the expenses of sending representatives on work, and they enable organisations to have some control over the worker’s travel expenses and well-being.

The following points will validate the importance of having policy compliance for corporate travel: –

  • Make better decisions

There are a lot of factors to be considered before making any decision, and to make this decision making easy, a set of guidelines is required! With reference to business travel, most of the corporate firms have certain policies to streamline this process.

Corporate travel policy will help the employees in booking flights, hotels and so on, within the basis of the company guidelines ensuring that the decisions taken in the aspect are appropriate.

  • Keeps the travel booking process organised

Booking a corporate trip oversees has a lot of documentation to be done, and these documentations are very important to claim reimbursements later. Many a times employees tend to spend extensively under the impression of getting it reimbursed once they return, but to their surprise, certain expenses which are not covered in the policies cannot be reimbursed. In situations such as this policy compliance plays an important role.

  • Happy Travellers = More saving

It should be noted that when compiling the travel policy of the company, the employee’s views must be considered. This is very important because when the employees are not happy with the travel policy then tend to violate and book out of the policy, costing the company more money. Therefore, it can be inferred that happy traveller = more saving!

  • Policy compliance means better budget control!

Every firm develops a travel policy to have some sense of control over their travel spending and keep the budget in control. Domestic and international trips have different budget allocations and the trip planned must fall within the range to keep the costs minimal. On average, most of the international trips cost around $3000 to $3500 and a domestic trip has a cap of $1200 – $1500. This range must be followed religiously so that the trip planned is optimum and does not incur additional expenses. By this we can see how important policy compliance becomes to keep the budget in control.

  • Streamlines the reimbursement procedures for travellers

Each company takes their own time to fulfill a claim for reimbursement, and there are multiple steps or stages in this process, which could take anywhere between 3 – 10 business days to clear one claim. In case such as these policy compliance helps the company in saving a lot of time. When a trip is booked with 100% compliance with the company policy, there is no need to for further audit and verification since all the expenses fall within the required range.

Traveo, which is a cloud-based Business Travel and Expenses Management software, help firms in simplifying and streamlining this entire process at the click of a button. Traveo is a fully automated Travel & Expense management cloud software for enterprises that helps organisations in optimising spends on business travel.

It is the world’s first software which automatically plans the business travel of employees by using advanced AI algorithms while ensuring that the chosen options are cost effective, compliant with company policy and convenient for the employees

Written by-

Bopanna P C

About the author-

I am currently working with Traveo Soft Pvt Ltd as a business development executive.

Traveo is a fully automated Travel & Expense management cloud solution for enterprises that helps organizations in optimizing spends on business travel. Traveo optimizes the entire travel while ensuring that the chosen options are cost effective, compliant with company policy and convenient for the employees.

If you want to have more details regarding Traveo, feel free to contact me on hello@traveosoft.com

 

Business travel- The new age travelers!

A business outing is an outing attempted for work or business purposes, rather than different sorts of travel, for example, for recreation purposes or frequently driving from one’s home to the working environment.

Back in the 90’s business travel meant a sense of pride and accomplishment. Someone being sent on a business trip gave others another reason for them to envy the already successful individual. Eventually as time and business processes evolved, business travel was not just reserved to the top management or the successful, it opened to a completely new and a vibrant workforce.

Today’s businesses are more dynamic and tend to send representatives who can replicate the same kind of energy and dynamism in themselves. Interestingly the larger proportion of this population comprises of younger aged employees who believe in mixing business with leisure, giving rise to a new trend called “bleisure”.

In fact, according to a Bridge Street Global Hospitality report, “60 percent of travellers reported having taken bleisure trips, with 30 percent adding at least two additional days to their trip. Those that have done so say it helps them to work more effectively, takes some of the stress out of business travel and keeps them more relaxed while away from home.” There’s also the added benefit of quality time with a significant other, increasing the amount of time road warriors can spend with family.

The largest group indulging was 25- to 35-year-olds, representing millennials accustomed to a blurred, digital lifestyle. This always-on connected generation is more apt to deploy a business-mixed-with-pleasure mind set. For example, millennial bleisure travellers are more likely to turn an evening out into a networking opportunity.

And bleisure travel continues to grow: 60 percent of the respondents were more likely to take a bleisure trip now than they were five years ago. This percentage is even greater among younger business travellers. Regardless of age, 94 percent stated they do so to gain cultural experiences and to explore the cities they travel to on business. Furthermore, almost 55 percent of bleisure explorers take family members with them, while around 29 percent said they have not yet, however might want to or are wanting to.

For hoteliers and travel suppliers, bleisure travellers offer a clear opportunity to increase revenues from business travellers extending stays. Non-business-oriented hotels should also strategize targeted marketing to this demographic to grab share from business-focused hotels with less appeal as leisure accommodation.

Reference-

  1. https://www.sabre.com/insights/bleisure-travel-the-benefits-of-mixing-business-travel-with-leisure/

Written by-

Bopanna P C

About the author-

I am currently working with Traveo Soft Pvt Ltd as a business development executive.

Traveo is a fully automated Travel & Expense management cloud solution for enterprises that helps organizations in optimizing spends on business travel. Traveo optimizes the entire travel while ensuring that the chosen options are cost effective, compliant with company policy and convenient for the employees.

If you want to have more details regarding Traveo, feel free to contact me on hello@traveosoft.com