The future of business travel
IN A post-pandemic world, the rate of return to business travel will vary greatly by region and type of trip (i.e. domestic, regional, long-haul international) and nobody can say with a great deal of certainty what volumes will look like.
What is more certain, however, is that as business travel resumes then cost, risk and change management are likely to emerge as top of mind priorities for every organisation.
Cost management will be important because most organisations will be returning from a near zero dollar spend on travel, and each trip and each dollar proposed to be spent will be reviewed with a greater level of scrutiny than before.
Risk management will be key to ensure traveller wellbeing is certain and that duty of care obligations are being met and this is at the core of the must-haves to enable the return to the skies for corporate travellers. Change management will be critical, not just to support an organisations’ travellers as they navigate a much more unpredictable landscape of disruptions, but also to ensure that credits are effectively tracked and utilised.
Underpinning these requirements is a pre-requisite for corporate travel to be booked through a managed sales channel. Flights or hotels booked directly on airline or supplier websites make it nearimpossible for the organisation to effectively address the imperatives of cost, risk or change management.
A travellercentric travel program is now a musthave, and technology can be the catalyst to bring more spend into the managed channel, driving adoption and ensuring compliance through seamless policy application at point of purchase.
The world of business travel has changed, and now is the time for travel managers to assess the role of technology in supporting a safe and effective return to travel.
** Opinions expressed are those of the author. Comments are welcome, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Risk management will be key to ensure traveller wellbeing is certain and that duty of care obligations are being met
Nick Whitehead is the Chief Marketing Officer for Serko, leading the market engagement to align Zeno, Serko’s next generation travel and expense platform, with the evolving needs of corporate travel managers and their travellers. Find out more at zeno.com.