Data voids became a major concern for travel managers when the pandemic gripped the travel industry in 2020. Locating, contacting, and moving travelers before the impending border closures came into effect was urgent. This shed light on the challenge travel managers have faced for years — business travel program leakage and the dangers of incomplete duty of care that come with it. In this blog, we’ll discuss how capturing travel leakage data can help support duty of care and keep your business travel program risks in check.
What Is Travel Leakage Data?
Before we dive into duty of care, let’s talk about leakage data. Travel leakage data is important business traveler information that travel managers don’t know. Typically, leakage occurs when travelers use methods outside of an organization’s Travel Management Company (TMC) and book their own trips to reimburse later. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing — self-booking is often used to get better prices that aren’t available through a company’s TMC. The problem is that, if the organization has no way to track that information, they are unable to fulfill their care obligation, leaving employees at risk.
Unfortunately, these data blind spots can be a matter of life or death. Lack of data visibility on off-channel bookings creates unnecessary risk for both travelers and businesses. Now, however, these risks are preventable.
Pre-trip data capture for all itineraries, including changes and cancellations, will play a pivotal role as companies break out of the COVID-19 induced travel freeze. Traxo assists companies with real-time, pre-trip business travel data and intelligence to minimize risk and maximize data accuracy.
Answering the Call: What is Business Travel Duty of Care?
Duty of care isn’t just a buzzword, it’s a vital responsibility. Business travel duty of care is the legal requirements that companies must follow when it comes to protecting the employees it sends out of the office. What exactly those legal requirements are varies from place to place, but the idea is always the same: Keep your travelers safe. And that’s why leakage data presents a problem — you can’t protect someone if you can’t locate them.
By using a solution like Traxo, you can keep track of every traveling employee, whether they booked through you or on their own.
Business Travel Duty of Care: The True Risks
On average, travel managers observe that 31% of corporate bookings are made outside of the corporate program, which means that more than 30 out of every 100 business travelers are unaccounted for at some point during their trips, if not entirely. Let that number sink in for a moment while you think of your colleagues.
While some executives may feel this is an acceptable risk, it remains a burden to travel managers and a massive liability to companies when duty of care is not a priority. Legal obligations aside, no one wants to put their coworkers in danger.
An International SOS report shares several examples of what can go wrong. Here’s an excerpt:
“In Munn v. The Hotchkiss School, a student alleged that her school had breached its duty to her when, during a school trip to China, she contracted a rare tick-borne disease. The jury in that case agreed, and entered a judgment against the school for $41.7 million.” This “duty” extends well beyond schools and universities. Businesses can be sued over car accidents, injuries, kidnappings and other tragedies that happen during corporate business travel.”
Ease Travel Risk Management Concerns with Comprehensive Travel Data
By migrating to an “omnichannel” travel management strategy – one that incorporates data from TMC and non-TMC sources – corporate travel managers can take proactive steps toward complete travel data visibility. Traxo’s ability to parse email reservations (without the need for email-forwarding) and consolidate itinerary information into one reporting tool provides you with accurate and comprehensive pre-trip data insights.
Want to balance travel risk management duties with employee data privacy needs to find out more information on duty of care as it relates to corporate travel? Access our whitepaper, “Risk Management: Duty of Care vs Data Privacy.
Previously, off-channel booking data could only be captured through credit card and expense reports after trips ended. Post-trip reconciliation is outdated and creates additional travel risk exposure, which can be minimized with real-time data aggregation. Now, travel managers can intervene before corporate travel occurs if a booking is non-compliant or requires an employee to travel to a high-risk area.
Leveraging Off-Channel Bookings
Regardless of how stringently your policy and program is managed today, you know that some leakage is inevitable. By employing the right platform to eliminate inconsistent and incomplete travel data insights, you can see and manage your off-channel bookings. This proactive approach benefits itinerary management, rate re-shopping, negotiations with new and existing suppliers, and policy compliance while reducing risk to both the organization and the traveler.
If a more flexible travel policy suits your organization, you can empower your employees to book where they want without missing any necessary travel information. In many cases, such as this Ritchie Bros. case study, this flexibility leads to increased traveler satisfaction without compromising duty of care.
Create Win-Win Scenarios for Your Business and Its Travelers
Traxo empowers corporate travel managers, globally, to act quickly and proactively when faced with an imminent crisis. You have an opportunity to create beneficial scenarios for all parties involved; you, your organization, and, most importantly, your business travelers.
Business Benefits of Traxo:
- Complete pre-trip data visibility in one platform, accessible 24/7, allowing you to manage your program and travelers proactively.
- Complete data for eliminating risk, identifying missed savings opportunities, more effective supplier negotiations, and improved policy compliance.
- Reduced administrative lift of communicating, reporting, and tracking traveler policy violations.
- 20-minute implementation and no need for employee training.
- Peace of mind knowing their employer can easily locate them in a crisis to help reduce the severity of the situation, no matter how they booked their travel.
- Seamless data capture that doesn’t require any action by the traveler or any traveler training. Itinerary details are automatically delivered to duty of care providers and directly accessible through Traxo’s customer portal.
- Greater booking flexibility in organizations that embrace a “hybrid travel program.”
Are you ready to start managing the never-before-seen parts of your travel program with Traxo’s robust data insights platform? Contact a Traxo travel data consultant today.