Lat­vian com­pa­nies ahead of neigh­bours in or­ga­ni­za­tion of busi­ness trips

Baltic News Network - - Front Page -

Lat­vian busi­nesses are more pro­gres­sive in the or­ga­ni­za­tion of busi­ness trips than Lithua­nia. They do, how­ever, spend a lot of money on plan­ning and or­ga­niz­ing of those trips. In ad­di­tion, they also use in­ef­fi­cient fi­nanc­ing meth­ods – 20% of em­ploy­ees are forced to pre-fi­nance their busi­ness trips from their own pock­ets, ac­cord­ing to re­sults of an in­ter­na­tional study.

Amadeus Latvia sales and mar­ket­ing di­rec­tor says 54% of Lat­vian com­pa­nies use IT so­lu­tions to book busi­ness trips. It is the high­est in­dex when com­pared with other coun­tries of Cen­tral and Eastern Europe.

As a com­par­i­son, the in­dex of use of IT so­lu­tions is 45% in Lithua­nia, 52% in Hun­gary, 49% in the Czech Repub­lic, 40% in Ro­ma­nia and only 28% in Poland.

Com­pared with other Cen­tral and Eastern Euro­pean coun­tries, Lat­vian em­ploy­ees more of­ten have to pay for trips from their own wal­lets (20%). Busi­ness trips are paid back to them after re­turn­ing, which is a time-con­sum­ing and in­ef­fec­tive use of re­sources. At the same time, only 36% of Lat­vian com­pa­nies plan to re­duce ex­penses associated with busi­ness trips this year. It is one of the low­est in­dexes in our re­gion.

«Latvia stands out in the use of IT so­lu­tions. Nev­er­the­less, it seems busi­ness trips re­main an in­suf­fi­ciently val­ued as­pect for Lat­vian busi­nesses. Cer­tain restruc­tured changes could help re­duce costs in this. It can be done by fol­low­ing a travel pol­icy, in­tro­duc­ing a sin­gle book­ing sys­tem and at­tract­ing ser­vices of pro­fes­sional travel agen­cies,» says Amadeus Baltic re­gional di­rec­tor Ki­tija Tigule. In Lithua­nia, 48% of re­spon­dents are get­ting ready to re­duce the cost of busi­ness trips. Look­ing at ways to ac­com­plish­ing that, Lat­vian com­pa­nies plan to re­duce costs by lim­it­ing the costs of sin­gle trips (61%), but not the to­tal num­ber of busi­ness trips (25%). Such a solution is pop­u­lar, es­pe­cially among medium-sized com­pa­nies. 58% of re­spon­dents in Latvia plan to sort out or­ga­ni­za­tional mat­ters this year. The most no­table planned changes in­clude com­pli­ance with busi­ness travel pol­icy (42%), as well as re­duc­tion of busi­ness trip costs and for­mal­i­ties associated with their plan­ning process (34%).

«Although Lat­vian com­pa­nies are largely sat­is­fied with the qual­ity of or­ga­ni­za­tion of busi­ness trips, more than half of de­ci­sion-mak­ers in Lat­vian com­pa­nies plan to add changes to the book­ing and or­ga­ni­za­tional process. In spite of dy­namic devel­op­ment of com­mu­ni­ca­tions tech­nolo­gies, com­pa­nies need not have to re­duce the fre­quency of busi­ness trips. All they have to do is prop­erly plan trips,» Tigule rec­om­mends.

84% of Lat­vian com­pa­nies and more than half of com­pa­nies in Cen­tral and Eastern Europe would be ready to en­trust the man­age­ment of busi­ness trips to pro­fes­sional travel agen­cies un­der the con­di­tion that the busi­ness trip brings ben­e­fits to the com­pany. «Such as step will def­i­nitely help re­duce the cost of busi­ness trips,» Tigule says. She notes that travel agen­cies have ac­cess to more favourable of­fers. They also ap­ply busi­ness client tar­iffs reached through talks with ser­vice providers. It is also pos­si­ble to save time by en­trust­ing travel man­age­ment to spe­cial­ists from travel agen­cies.

Pan­therMe­dia/SCANPIX

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