Employee satisfaction during business trips should be one of the main goals of travel planners. The fact that the traveller returns to the office happy and satisfied will also have a positive effect on the achievement of business objectives. It goes without saying that work results are always the main focus.
In order to coordinate all the elements of the trip, in-house travel agencies with the relevant specialists are often used. However, assistants to the management also frequently take care of this.
The aim of travel management should be to make the employees’ trip as enjoyable as possible so that they can achieve the best results on site – while keeping a constant eye on travel costs.
Regardless of who is responsible for booking flights, accommodation and transportation on site, without clearly defined travel guidelines it can get complicated managing all the costs associated with business travel, from meals and insurance to travel extensions for private purposes.
The advantage of clear and transparent travel guidelines is that all these aspects are defined in advance and the traveller knows exactly how reimbursements are handled.
Internal guidelines are particularly important in the travel-planning phase:
- They give travel management a systematic view of the entire process
- They tell employees which expenses can be reimbursed and about the procedure for managing expense claims
- They optimise costs thanks to a set of conventions and the establishment of upper limits that the employee must respect
- They offer more protection through clear security procedures and guidelines
The details of the travel guidelines can vary depending on the objectives, the size of the company and the budget. Nevertheless, there are some essential elements to ensure their effectiveness. These include:
1. Expenses anticipated by your company
These are the expenses that are reimbursed to the employee after the trip or settled by the company card. All restrictions and guidelines for bookings must be clearly defined.
2. Expenses that are not covered by the company
Good travel guidelines specify which services are excluded from reimbursement by the company.
3. Instructions for completing the expense report and reimbursement procedures
Use of a corporate credit card is a practical and secure solution for both company and employees. In many cases, however, it is still necessary to keep every receipt and invoice in order to fill in the expense report when back at home. This section of the guidelines should specify the documents required. It should say how quickly and when they can be handed over and when they should be reimbursed. It should also include contact details of the relevant person within the company. With a company card, employees do not need to advance money or fill in forms. In addition, the company has greater control when it comes to keeping within budgetary limits.
4. Safety instructions
It is essential to ensure the safety of employees on business trips. To do this, it is important to have clear procedures in the event of emergencies or unforeseen events. Taking out insurance is certainly a valuable aid, but the company’s travel agency should always be informed about colleagues’ movements, their accommodation details, and their contacts in the field.