The global pandemic has transformed the way we travel. Because of so many unknowns, it has made corporate travel management more challenging than ever.
However, as long as businesses meet their demands, employees are ready to travel again.
According to this recent survey, a whopping 96% of business travellers throughout the globe can’t wait to get back on the road.
So, how should companies and the workforce prepare for such travels? Read on to discover three ways to adapt in a post-pandemic environment.
1. Review Company Travel Rules
With travellers facing new and ever-evolving risks, it's time for decision-makers to revisit internal policies. Companies should once again examine their best practices and keep employees in the loop for any changes.
Update your guidelines regarding the following topics:
Option To Decline
Even when the pandemic ends, a handful of people might not be too thrilled about travelling for business. Decide on your policies for these scenarios.
Consider redefining which travel types are essential for business operations. One of the things the pandemic taught us is to work effectively in remote or hybrid settings. It’s the perfect time to beef up your corporate travel regulations and do away with costly and ineffective trips.
Approved Travel Partners
Another component to reconsider is your list of approved travel partners. While you should empower travellers to choose suppliers, it’s essential to validate that each one follows safety protocols to reduce health and safety risks.
For instance, saving a few dollars on the lowest-priced airline that doesn’t require masks might increase insurance and testing costs. You should leverage your corporate travel management company for this advice as their experience in this field is where they excel at.
Depending on state and local COVID laws — which won’t likely go away for a while — you need to provide employees with protective equipment for some trips. Travelling individuals might also ask for basics like masks, wipes, hand sanitisers, etc.
2. Embrace Modern Technologies
COVID-19 forced countless businesses of all sizes and industries worldwide to adapt to digital changes. According to McKinsey & Company, the pandemic sped up the digitization process 20 – 25 times faster.
During the lockdowns, we’ve witnessed some next-level travel technologies. These include virtual and augmented reality, crowd control robots, and medical-grade disinfecting in airports.
Below are also some functionalities you can integrate with your existing corporate travel management efforts:
Cybersecurity has been one of the biggest challenges of corporate travel management because travel companies are vulnerable to data breaches. These organisations employ many people and keep valuable customer data, making them the ideal cyberattack targets.
Before renewing your contracts with existing suppliers, make sure they undergo hardware and software updates and cybersecurity training. Also, ask how they protect clients from phishing and ransomware attacks.
Another transformative travel tech is the use of contactless payments. This feature makes it easier for travellers to pay suppliers even without access to cash or cards.
Before letting employees book flights to the other side of the world, include provisions for contactless payments.
For example, discuss reimbursement options whenever they use local payment solutions that don’t offer physical receipts.
Using contactless payments not only makes life easier for your staff but it also protects them from unnecessary exposure to lurking viruses.
If you plan on sending multiple employees to various countries, we recommend choosing suppliers that provide 24/7/365 live chat services. Talking to representatives is a big plus, but reliable in-app chat can answer common questions like flight schedules, safety measures, and refund policies.
Lastly, travellers always prefer to be online when they're away. After all, they will need directions, lunch recommendations, and email access every so often. If you want to address the demands of the modern business traveller, prepare for additional network services expenses.
3. Offer End-to-End Travel Management
Modern business travellers value peace of mind especially when it comes to managing their travel in a post COVID environment. They prefer overseeing their trips through apps that allow them to make travel changes right at their fingertips. Apart from convenient transport and accommodation booking, they also want to simplify the internal approval process.
We recommend finding one platform to manage bookings, approvals, reporting, and everything in between.
The Locomote Advantage
At Locomote, we have what it takes to help businesses adapt in a post-COVID world.
As the demands of the modern business traveller evolve, so should your technologies.
Let’s face it: a travel program for employees can be a massive headache for several departments, especially after a pandemic that we have just experienced.
However, with the right tools on your side, business travel planning should be as easy as one, two, three.
We offer businesses an award-winning platform that connects you to our exclusive travel agency network. We’ve helped thousands of individuals create safe, personalised trips and get approval within minutes.
Industry leaders like Bondi Sands, Chevron, and ZipMoney have trusted us for their corporate travel management as they have scaled their businesses.
We’ve provided them with massive savings and unmatched dedicated support through groundbreaking technologies.
Prepare for Business Travel Now
Business travel figures suggest that revenue will likely rise within the year, but not at pre-pandemic levels yet. There have been massive changes in the industry, and some are here to stay. They include technologies and corporate travel management solutions that empower employees.
If you’re ready for business travel, get a product demo now.
We have all the world-class experts and technologies you need to develop a seamless travel program.