This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
The Knowledge > Supplier perspective Why we should…

SIMPLIFY CORPORATE TRAVEL Stewart Harvey, group commercial director at HRG, calls for the industry to stop over-engineering corporate travel and to simplify the entire process

WE ARE living in complex times with ever increasing demands on our time, our resources and our business. And corporate travel is no exception. It has changed from a service that enables clients to make travel arrangements into a business process in its own right. But why has corporate travel become

Stewart Harvey GROUP COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR, HRG Stewart Harvey was appointed to the HRG executive board in September 2008, reporting to HRG’s chief executive David Radcliffe, and had global responsibility for HRG’s multinational managed clients. He was appointed to his current role in September 2010, taking on the additional responsibility for HRG’s global sales and corporate client activity. Notable achievements during his time with HRG include designing global client management business units, establishing pan- European service propo- sitions, and implementing multi-country service developments.

so complex? The principles of business travel have remained the same since the very first commercial flights: a business traveller needs to get from A to B, on a certain date, at a specific time, for a specific reason, in as good a condition as possible. The purpose of the trip is to meet people and conduct business – not to take a flight on an airplane, stay in a hotel, hire a car or to book a taxi. The process of arranging this travel

can be summarised quite simply: it is to find the right travel solution at the right price, and be able to book and pay for this travel, account and report for expenses. The key difference between business travel of the past and business travel today is the volume of travel involved. There are now many more issues at play than simply booking a flight at a published price and reserving a room at a quoted rate. We have gone beyond the simplicity

of volume-related discounts (once just the domain of the larger clients) because travel is now a dynamic marketplace where fares and rates are linked to demand and prices are changing constantly. Travel management

“Is it time to simplify the process? Perhaps in complex times our watchword should be simplicity”

today requires higher levels of management care. And let’s not forget that travel management is not simply about understanding the cost of a trip. It is also about the value of a trip, which is why I’m adding another crucial dimension into the mix: time. How long will the trip

keep a traveller away from home? Is it worth travelling a day out and a day back for a three-hour meeting? If it’s to clinch a multimillion dollar deal, the answer is probably yes; if not, the answer may be no.

However, there is more to this complexity than just the nuance of travel. The corporate environment has added layers of process and control. There are now many more stake- holders involved, each with a valid interest in the company travel programme. The layers of corporate complexity are driven from many different perspectives: Finance: controls and data drive

these experts as they consider the impact on expense management, measurement and performance. Procurement: savings and data underpin the drive from procurement experts as they review commercial agreements and savings. IT: systems, self-booking, unified communications and traveller devices, not to mention data and security, are the key drivers for these professionals. Business users: the total cost of the

trip, data and performance will all be analysed by this group. Individual traveller: wellbeing, performance, policy, travel experience and comfort all matter to travellers, as well as complying with policy.

HR: wellbeing, performance and corporate social responsibility are factors to be considered under conditions, policy and standards. Legal: liability, traveller conduct, and security of both the individual and the corporate make up just some of the triggers from a corporate law perspective. Executive: all of the above matter to

the c-suite of every origination as they seek assurance about total costs, total data, strategy and savings. We can add to this the challenges created by the travel industry itself: new ‘models’ providing different fees, content spread across a variety of distribution channels, and suppliers with diverting strategies. Is it time to simplify the process? Perhaps in complex times our watchword should be simplicity. Together we must find a way to remove the confusion from our industry. Not to dumb down our industry or the needs of our travellers and businesses, but rather to be certain that we are not guilty of over- engineering corporate travel.



Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84  |  Page 85  |  Page 86  |  Page 87  |  Page 88  |  Page 89  |  Page 90  |  Page 91  |  Page 92  |  Page 93  |  Page 94  |  Page 95  |  Page 96