Change, for most businesses, isn’t readily or swiftly accepted, but it is inevitable.
With business travel demands and a stronger emphasis on employee health, it has become critical to apply contemporary thinking and utilize business travel solutions to streamline procedures and save costs.
There’s an ongoing debate within business organizations about the advantages of allowing employees to book their own travels.
For decades, companies have followed the more conservative approach of using traditional travel agencies to organize business trips. Beneficial when travel technology was in its nascent stage, this system is now sluggish and brimming with issues that impede productivity.
Before looking at the benefits of giving the business traveler a somewhat free hand in organizing their trips, lets us first see how using a travel agency reduces efficiency in a company.
Drawbacks of Using Traditional Travel Agencies
When hiring a travel agency, the primary cause of concern is that booking a business trip becomes a time-consuming process. From sending the initial request to the final approval, there is a need for constant coordination between the management, agency, and the employee resulting in unnecessary back and forth communication.
The system follows a cookie-cutter attitude towards booking hotels and airlines, with little or no personalization for the individual traveler. Subsequently, there are limited backup options for last-minute changes, a common occurrence during business travel.
By adding the agency, a middle person, to the proceedings, the company ends up paying extra for services that their employee can happily manage themselves in our technologically advanced, smartphone-friendly work environment.
Benefits of Allowing Employees to Book their Own Travels
Allowing individuals to self-book their hotels and flights instantly increase trust between the management and the employee. For the company, this quickens the process, taking away hours of extra work-time spent on managing different travel elements from booking and expense reporting to reimbursements and cancellations.
The benefits of this move are, however, not limited to the organization. Business travelers, for instance, now have a choice over the flights they book. Therefore, they can either take a redeye or an early morning flight, whatever is most comfortable for them.
In case of sudden travel itinerary changes, the employee is at liberty to change their flight and easily self manage to unbook hotels. If still in need to speak with a travel expert, new solutions like SoldoutNight offer easy to reach multichannel customer support.
Several companies also allow accumulated airline miles to be used for personal use, a much-appreciated initiative for frequent travelers.
The same is true for hotel bookings. After all, the modern-day business traveler is smart, inquisitive, adventurous, and wants to make the most from their business trips. They have preferences that help them perform better while supporting personal mental and physical health.
Independent booking allows them to choose between a bustling city hotel with a pool and a gym or the quietude of an apartment that is off the beaten track. With control in their hands, they can select a room and contact SoldoutNight customer support to request any special requirements.
Striking the Perfect Balance
Admittedly, giving employees a complete freehand in organizing their business trips without any monitoring is not the smartest of moves.
Companies need to form the right balance between giving business travelers enough autonomy while incorporating policies via all-in-one business travel solutions that help keep a check on individual responsibilities.
As it is, by making employees accountable for their travels, they are likely to opt for the cheapest travel options, spending time looking at accommodations and flights that best suit their personal likings.
In addition to that, by incorporating a specific policy into the company’s business travel solution software, the management can keep expenses within the budget.
Everyone enjoys freedom, and in the fast-moving industry of business travel, every ounce of flexibility enjoyed by employees results in increased efficiency. On the outset, the option to self-book a business trip might seem like a minor alteration to make.
When done in consolidation with a business travel solution software, its impact is massive in raising employee trust and satisfaction while reducing costs and required resources for your business.