Ensuring Travel Policy Compliance With The Help of Travel Management Systems
If you’re dealing with a complicated business process like travel management, it is essential to have a well-planned travel policy.
Studies show that just 50% of corporate travelers abide by their organization’s travel policy, and 60% don’t understand it. So if you’re dealing with employees who don’t know what website or business travel management software to use, or if they’re confused about what’s claimable and what isn’t, you’re in the right place!
Let us dive in and find out how your travel management system can ensure policy compliance.
But first, let’s understand the challenges to implementing company travel policies.
Challenges Of Travel Policy Compliance In Corporate Travel Management
There’s no right or wrong way to ensure everyone follows corporate travel rules. But here are a few points that create a roadblock in policy compliance.
- If your employees are unaware of the corporate travel policy, they cannot adhere to it.
- If the policy is complex, employees may not understand it.
- Business travelers typically want to do what is best for the company, but sometimes employees may breach policy unknowingly or by mistake.
- A study by The London School of Economics showed that business travelers defy some policies on purpose. These factors include not getting the appropriate approval and disregarding limitations on airfares or hotels.
Steps To Ensure Policy Compliance With Travel Management System
Your strategies for improving corporate travel compliance should integrate with your company’s culture and be adaptable to your team, industry, and budget. But some general tips can help you enforce your corporate travel policies and procedures better.
Use The Right Business Travel Management Software System
There is no shortage of innovative travel software that you can use to enhance corporate travel management. The market has many tools to help travel managers ensure employees abide by the rules. For instance, ITILITE alerts you when employees book out of policy, and you can reach out to them with targeted messages to guide them in making the right decisions. This technology lets you see when there’s been a breach, and you can take action right away – and expertly manage your corporate travel expenses.
Train Your Business Travelers
Once you create a travel policy, your job doesn’t end there. To initiate compliance, you should educate your employees on the policy and how to use the business travel management software.
Sure, your travel manager could share a copy of the policies with the team and rest easy. But you need to ensure employees read it and abide by it. That’s where enterprising corporate travel management comes in.
You can use a few different ways to educate your staff. For example, you can conduct workshops before business trips. Or, you can set up training sessions with your travel team where they can explain the policy to each person. These one-on-one sessions also give your employees a chance to ask questions about the guidelines and have their doubts clarified.
Establish Granular Travel Processes
If you want your employees to follow your travel policies, you should simplify and break them down for them. Implementing a granular policy makes it easier for everyone to understand the processes. A leading travel management software can help you provide simple and updated workflows.
Your company can break down your travel policy into different sections based on your travel goal, destination, trips, department, and projects. This way, you’ll be sure everyone has access to the travel rules and guidelines they need to follow.
Create Mandatory Approvals
It is common for employees to cancel a business travel booking when they make a business travel arrangement without proper authorization. Your company can avoid cancellation charges and penalties if your travel policy requires prior approval.
When an employee uses an expert travel management system, they cannot book their business trip without proper approval from the relevant manager. A simplified process allows them to send their business travel request to the manager based on your approval workflow.
Set Travel Products
These days, a travel management system makes it easy for employees to book their own flights, hotels, and car rentals.
They have a wide selection of travel products, but the travel management solution only shows them the travel products your company sets as per your policy. This function allows the travel management solution to avert policy infractions and still provide an enjoyable journey for employees.
Monitor Policy Violations
Aside from improving travel policy compliance, a travel management system also helps ensure your employees follow your travel policies. It will use intelligence technologies to search and find any breaches.
These systems will send you an automated alert whenever an employee violates the rules. In this way, you can take action against them right away. The best part, you can stop them from breaking your travel policies in the future.
There is no company that can keep up with changing travel needs and adapt to the latest trends. That is why it is necessary to update your travel policy regularly. Travel management software makes it simple to update your policies. It lets your employees know of the new changes.
It also helps you stay on top of your travel policies by giving you actionable insights. The software uses data analytics to analyze employee travel behavior and patterns. With this travel management system, you can identify areas to improve travel policy compliance and make better decisions.
Limit Out-Of-Bound Reimbursement
If you want to guarantee your company has a good travel policy, it is necessary to have precise rules on expenses. If your employee becomes baffled over whether or not room service is allowed could cost your company or the traveler a lot of money.
So, if you want to be sure this doesn’t happen, set a good reimbursement process that includes everything from where you stay to what you eat, tips, entertainment, and any extra travel you do. Denying to reimburse employees for false claims is a great way to stop them from breaking your policy, so you can make sure everyone follows it.
Summing Up: Set Clear Boundaries In Your Travel Management System
Business travelers often don’t adhere to company policies because they don’t understand or break them by mistake. Your company should create a corporate travel policy and ensure everyone follows them precisely.
Use online booking tools to help everyone follow your travel policies. The right travel management solution, like ITILITE, can help you manage policies and track violations, but you’ll need to configure and customize it properly to make it even better. Don’t forget to use compliance as a key performance indicator when measuring your corporate travel management performance.