These days, companies are looking to lighten the workload by outsourcing their travel requirements. As a result, the number of travel management companies is rising.
Most companies want a corporate travel consultant who understands their needs. However, finding the ideal travel management company is easier said than done.
Let us take you through a few considerations you need to have when choosing a corporate travel consultant to manage your business travel.
Your team should find it easy to make travel arrangements. If not, they will spend time and resources on simple tasks which cost the company. An excellent corporate travel consultant should work with a seamless booking system that uses innovative technological tools.
Prepare the corporate goals to accomplish related to your travel needs. Then look for a corporate travel consultant who fits that brief. Speak to the frequent travelers in your company and team members who previously managed travel requirements. In this way, you can ensure that you understand what your business needs.
An expert can guide your business in creating customized travel policies. You will need a travel management consultant who can reduce your travel spending and fulfills policy compliance. They should be able to handle any unexpected changes and reduce unnecessary hassle. A good travel management company also ensures risk management and prioritizes traveler safety.
The travel management company you choose may provide a consultant for your particular needs. But, it is you who must ensure that their services meet your corporate goals.
Inventory of services
If your company has access to a large inventory, you can compare rates and get the best steal deals for your business trips. In contrast, when you have limited choices, there is a possibility that bookings may breach policy compliance. So look for a travel consultant with the expertise and the connections to provide plenty of options.
Legacy and reach
Focus on the places your team travels to most frequently. Most corporate travel consultants have expertise in international or domestic travel.
Your business needs an expert with first-hand knowledge of the places your business travelers frequent. Experience allows a corporate travel consultant to provide customized plans if your employees take trips to a particular location. On the other hand, if your company travels across the globe, they need the support of a corporate travel consultant who provides 24/7 customer care wherever your team may be.
Skills and expertise
Not all business travelers have the exact needs. Hence, a travel management company may provide the services of corporate travel consultants who cater to particular segments. A few large travel management companies have sub-divisions with experts in specific industries.
For instance, some services cater to different sectors like banks and financial segments, consumer goods, IT, and more.
The corporate travel consultant you choose should have expertise in your industry.
Set the bar high
Of course, when you approach a travel consultant, they will try to convince you that they are the best choice for your business. But don’t take their word for it, do due diligence and check their history.
Once you have reviewed them, inform the corporate travel consultant of what you expect from them. List out your standards, practices, and policies, if any. If you need to tweak your policy compliance and the experts have any inputs, update those policies.
Furthermore, set high standards and expectations once you sign up with them; do not settle for less than the best services. Ensure you have monthly, quarterly, and annual assessments to review their travel services. Your contract should have these metrics to ensure that the standard of services meets the benchmark.
Your travel partner should have the resources and tools to save you time, money, and effort. To do so, they will need the best software and technology to ensure a seamless process.
When you engage with a corporate travel consultant who uses the latest travel technology, your travelers enjoy the best travel experience. Your business trips then become affordable and comfortable. Your travel consultant can analyze travel expenses and areas for making such savings. They will use the latest technology that allows for automation and expense reporting.
Unlike in the past, when all travel expenses and reports had to be on paper and was a cumbersome process. Today’s technology allows your business to get automated, digitalized, and paperless. So, it also makes sense for the ecology.
This is the most important tip of all. Most companies find that travel expenses take away a chunk of their budgets. In fact, on average, 10% of your business revenue is spent on business travel expenses. Thus, if your business is looking for profitability, they need a corporate travel consultant who can keep their travel expenses minimal.
A travel management company can save you money and help your ROI in many ways. They will have the responsibility of negotiating corporate rates with travel partners to help you save money. As stated earlier, they should have the technology, expertise, and a large inventory that enables this process.
Most importantly, their fee structure should be competitive and fit your travel budget. You should also ensure that they provide the services they charge you for. For instance, they should provide the best duty of care and around-the-clock services. Make sure there are no hidden fees or clauses that skip your notice in the agreement.
Also, find out if they have the experience that has helped other businesses reduce travel spend. These expense tracking and reporting measures are especially relevant to profitability. If you have any queries regarding your travel budget, cost, and finance processes, iron out these details before signing up.
Many businesses hand over their travel service responsibilities to their travel consultant and forget about monitoring the costs. An excellent corporate travel consultant will help your business stay on track by monitoring expenses and reporting. They should provide you with structured reports and analysis so that you can find the gaps and human errors that may erode savings and profits.
Every travel management company is unique in its approach and services. Ultimately, it is crucial that you find a travel partner like ITILITE, with the technology, tools, services, and support that meet the ever-changing business world of the future.