Business travel management is a cost-intensive business process. Enterprises often find it challenging to get higher returns despite increasing business travel budgets. Many companies these days save time and resources by outsourcing business travel management.
They work with travel management companies to manage business travel programs efficiently and in order to meet their business travel goals. The travel management services and solutions provided by a travel management company (TMC) help them make employees engage in business travel confidently and safely.
At the same time, the TMC helps them increase the ROI of corporate travel with the help of travel management software. This helps reduce business travel costs in several ways. If you are yet to outsource business travel management, it is time to understand how a TMC will help your company reduce business travel costs.
9 Ways a TMC Will Help Your Organization Reduce Business Travel Costs
- Ensuring Policy Compliance
You can make employees do the right travel booking by setting clear business travel and expense policies. But you cannot control costs when employees violate organizational policies at the time of business travel booking.
You can centralize business travel booking with the help of a TMC. The TMC will take care of all travel services such as booking flights, hotels, and car rentals for employees as per your company’s requirements. While booking a business trip, a TMC ensures policy compliance while simultaneously considering employees’ travel choices and preferences.
- Getting Negotiated Rates
Unlike large companies, small businesses and startups find it challenging to negotiate with suppliers for corporate rates. But a TMC enables customers to get expensive travel facilities at corporate rates without negotiating with suppliers.
Leading TMCs make travel bookings at lower rates than the actual market rates by partnering with leading airlines, hotel chains, and car rental companies. Hence, these negotiated rates help your organization save money on business travel booking.
- Booking Fully-Flexible Tickets
While making business travel arrangements, employees often do not book fully-flexible tickets. They escalate business travel costs by paying fees or penalties while canceling or rescheduling reservations. But TMCs always prioritize fully-flexible tickets over restricted fares.
Hence, it becomes easier for your employees to cancel or reschedule reservations without escalating business travel costs. Also, TMC helps your employees manage business travel bookings due to last-minute changes to business travel itineraries.
- Booking In Advance
Employees can save money by booking flights, accommodations, and other business travel products very much in advance. But many employees increase business travel costs by booking business trips at the last minute.
However, TMCs make business travel bookings as soon as a business trip is approved or business travel needs are shared. Early travel booking helps your organization avoid unnecessary travel costs.
- Controlling Additional Charges
While engaging in business travel, employees spend money on airport transfers, parking, breakfast, and/or Wi-Fi. Many hotels provide these services or facilities to guests free of cost. But employees do not leverage the facility while choosing business travel facilities for various reasons.
However, TMCs always focus on booking hotels at all-inclusive prices. They create bundles that include these facilities as add-on services. Hence, your employees can access various facilities without paying additional fees.
- Streamlining Travel Expense Management
No organization can control costs without streamlining the travel expense management process. Your finance team needs more time to review and process expense reports submitted by employees after business trips.
Also, they have to put in extra time and effort to track travel expenses. A TMC provides consolidated expense reports to their customers. Hence, it becomes easier for your finance team to find opportunities to control costs by tracking and reviewing business travel expenses.
Also, leading TMCs provide finance teams with robust expense management solutions. Your finance team can use the software to track travel expenses in real-time as well as conduct travel expense reviews and audits.
- Providing Duty of Care Solutions
Your organization must invest in duty-of-care resources to protect the physical and mental health of employees when they travel for work. Business travel costs increase significantly when you have to provide duty-of-care solutions to international business travelers.
TMCs help your organization meet the duty of care obligations by keeping employees safe and helping them manage business travel risks. They enhance business traveler safety by booking safer travel products and delivering real-time information.
Also, leading TMCs use international health and security service providers to keep your employees stress-free and safe in case of emergencies. Hence, your organization can avoid the duty of care costs by partnering with the right TMC.
- Reducing Your Staffing Cost
Business travel management is a complex business process. Your organization must deploy a dedicated travel manager to help employees plan business trips, make business travel arrangements, and manage business travel risks.
Likewise, you need to deploy additional staff to speed up travel expense reimbursements. TMCs eliminate the need for in-house travel managers by deploying skilled business travel consultants.
Your employees can contact corporate travel consultants directly to get relevant information and assistance on time. Also, the consolidated expense reports submitted by the TMC help you reimburse travel expenses quickly without deploying additional staff.
- Sharing Data-Driven Insights
TMCs collect travel and expense data of your employees regularly. In addition to unifying the real-time information, they analyze the data using robust data analytics solutions. The analytics solutions enable them to get meaningful and actionable insights by making sense of the raw data.
You can leverage the data-driven insights shared by the TMC to control business travel costs in several ways – curtailing unnecessary costs, refining business travel policies, and finding cost-saving opportunities.
A TMC will help your employees accomplish business travel goals by providing travel management services and solutions. Also, it will create opportunities for your company or startup to control business travel costs in various ways.
But you cannot control costs in the long run without business travel management automation. Hence, you should partner with a TMC that facilitates business travel management automation by providing T&E software.
The travel management software will help you control costs by making employees book travel products at negotiated rates without violating organizational policies. Also, it will analyze real-time travel and expense data and share insights that will help you control business travel costs in the long and short runs.