As a tried-and-tested strategy, outsourcing helps enterprises boost operational efficiency and control operating costs. Entrepreneurs these days focus on core business activities by outsourcing complex business processes like corporate travel management.
They streamline the time-intensive business process by using corporate travel management companies. Each company streamlines the crucial business process by providing many travel management services and solutions.
They help employees plan business trips, make travel arrangements, and mitigate business travel risks. Also, some companies facilitate end-to-end process automation by providing a business travel platform.
Hence, it becomes essential for your company or startup to choose the right corporate travel management company. Here are some important parameters to compare and shortlist the companies accurately.
11 Parameters for Accurate Comparison of Corporate Travel Management Companies
1. Your Business Travel Needs
You must focus on choosing a company that fully meets your travel management needs. Hence, you should define your business travel needs and priorities before shortlisting corporate travel management companies.
For instance, you should determine the volume of business travel and the types of business trips the company will handle. Likewise, you should consider the resources and tactics required to boost employees’ business travel experience and safety.
In addition, you must focus on reducing the average business trip costs without affecting the trip outcome. Hence, you should use your organization’s precise needs as the primary criteria while comparing corporate travel management companies.
2. T&E Policy Compliance
Well-defined travel and expense (T&E) policies are essential to streamline business travel management. The policies will help employees control costs by booking in-policy travel products and avoiding out-of-policy travel expenses.
Also, employees can mitigate common travel risks by adhering to preset guidelines. That is why; you should consider a company that helps you formulate T&E policies by sharing industry best practices. Also, you must check how the company eliminates T&E policy violations.
3. Travel Choices
Demographic characteristics of employees engaging in business travel differ. Hence, travel choices differ from one employee to another. For instance, some employees prefer homestays to hotels. Likewise, many employees remain stress-free by choosing direct flights to connecting flights.
Hence, you must partner with a travel management company, allowing employees to book the desired flights, accommodations, and other travel products. Also, by analyzing their booking history, check if the company makes personalized recommendations to employees.
4. 24/4 Travel Support
Frequent and first-time business travelers need information and assistance to mitigate travel risks. You can help employees mitigate business travel risks by shortlisting companies that provide round-the-clock travel support. In addition, you need to ensure that each employee can interact with a support executive using commonly used channels like emails, calls, and chats.
5. Duty of Care
Duty of care is an essential legal obligation that requires your organization to ensure the safety and security of each work traveler. You can meet the duty of care requirements by providing emergency assistance to each work traveler and 24/7 travel support.
While comparing corporate travel management companies, you must check how they enable employees to access emergency assistance across destinations. It is always important to prioritize companies that provide emergency assistance using global health and security risk management firms.
6. Travel Expense Reports
Corporate travel management companies speed up reimbursements by submitting consolidated expense reports. Furthermore, they make it easier for the finance team to process expense claims by submitting digital expense reports.
However, you must check the measures taken by the company to eliminate data entry errors in the expense reports. Also, you must ask several questions to ensure that the company prepares expense reports according to your organization’s documentation and reporting guidelines.
7. T&E Data Management
While making business travel arrangements, the company will access and store employees’ personal and financial data. Cybercriminals can use the data for financial fraud and identity thefts if the company does ensure 100% data security.
At the same time, you should prioritize companies that help your team access and analyze T&E data seamlessly. Many companies today facilitate real-time travel spend visibility by providing expense management software.
8. Industry Expertise
Business travel needs, challenges, and regulations vary across industries. A travel management company can meet your company’s travel needs efficiently if it has managed business travel programs of enterprises in your sector.
The industry expertise will help the company manage specific challenges and meet compliance requirements. Also, the company can boost employees’ business travel experience by adopting the hottest business travel trends.
9. Tech Solutions
Like outsourcing, automation helps your company streamline corporate travel management without escalating human resource costs. These days, leading corporate travel management companies provide helpful tech tools for travel booking, expense management, and data management.
Also, some companies automate the process fully by providing an integrated business travel platform. Hence, you must consider the tech solutions each shortlisted company provides to leverage the multiple benefits of process automation.
10. Cost Savings
Travel management companies reduce business trip costs in several ways. For instance, they negotiate with suppliers to book travel products at lower than market rates. Likewise, they save cancellation fees by booking fully refundable tickets.
In addition, many companies help you find cost control opportunities by sharing insights gained through T&E data analysis. Hence, you should choose a company that enables you to control business travel costs consistently.
11. Pricing Structure
Corporate travel management companies charge customers in several ways. Some of these companies require customers a monthly or yearly fee, while others charge payment based on travel management services availed by employees.
Also, they require companies to subscribe to travel management software. Hence, you must understand the fee structure to use a company that does not increase ongoing costs. However, it is always important to detect hidden charges by asking specific questions.
Your organization can increase the ROI of business travel by partnering with the right travel management company. But you should remember that corporate travel management companies differ from each other in many aspects.
Hence, you should shortlist these companies based on their travel management solutions and services. At the same time, you should prioritize companies that facilitate process automation by providing a robust business travel platform.