If you’re a travel manager that hasn’t been practicing any cost reduction strategies, you’re putting your company at a disadvantage. To be efficient and get the best value for your company, you must have plans in place when you are booking transportation and travel arrangements for your executives. Here are five tips to keep in mind when aiming to reduce your company’s business travel costs while maximizing value as much as possible:
Develop a Travel Policy
A well designed travel policy is crucial for your executive business travelers, so rules, regulations and expectations are clearly outlined and stated to the entire company. These include how your executives travel, any limitations on upgrades and you company’s policy for expense reimbursements. As long as you keep your travel policy concise, simple and your business travelers stay in compliance, corporate traveling and transportation expenses are more likely to stay within budget.
Implement the Travel Policy
Once a travel policy is in place, it is imperative the new policy and any future revisions are communicated to those within your company who travel for business. Otherwise, it will be impossible to monitor company-wide compliance. It’s necessary to present it verbally, but it’s even more crucial to post the most current version of the travel policy with announcements of any revisions and changes where it is accessible internally at all times, like on the company intranet site.
Look for True Value
Gain access to travel deals, discounts and limited offers and negotiate special deals on a regular basis. There are endless ways to add value to basic travel and transportation services, especially when it comes to corporate travel. Value added services, such as complimentary flight upgrades, access to airline lounges and car and room upgrades, can make a business trip for an executive more comfortable and less stressful.
Consolidate Your Suppliers
Use your company’s travel volume as a bargaining chip with the same executive car vendor or hotel chain to assist in the negotiation process. If your executives travel frequently, as a travel manager, you should be able to present how much business you can propose to a prospective supplier. Sticking to the same companies across the country generally qualifies for corporate rates at a discount.
Manage Expenses and Reconcile Accounts
Travel-related and entertainment expenses are two of the most controllable expenses for your company. While primary expenses, such as airfare, executive transportation and hotel lodging, are typically calculated in advance, it’s inevitable business travel will incur hidden costs. These miscellaneous expenses include taxis, out-of-policy spending and various fees to process claims. You must establish flexible invoicing and payment solutions that are designed specifically for your company, because it is essential for managing and reconciling business travel expenses and accounts competently.
There is a wide variety of advice and tips available to travel managers who are looking to cut costs while keeping value for their company, but these five are fairly easy to implement for any company regardless of size. The tasks and responsibilities assigned to a corporate travel manager are challenging as they are. But once you fine tune your processes, you will make your department operate at optimum productivity, which will benefit of the overall company and its bottom line.
DPV Transportation Worldwide helps corporate travel managers make their travel planning easier and more efficient, from VIP executive travelers to corporate groups.
Get in touch with our corporate travel planning department by calling 1.877.378.4445 or by clicking below to request a free quote.