Business owners prefer face-to-face meetings but an increase in travel cost and non-compliance with corporate travel policies create challenges. There are solutions, however, that are simple and effective.
Problem: High Travel Costs
In a recent travel trends study, more than 84% of business owners cited ever-increasing hotel and airfare rates as a strain on their bottom line. However, many of these businesses also report a reduction in their travel budget. Despite higher cost and fewer miles per dollar, small businesses are spending more money than ever before on work-related trips.
A major cause for concern amongst travelers is difficulty during the reservation process. Many business travelers report that seat reservations on low-cost carriers are more difficult than ever to come by and ancillary services are challenging the book.
Solution: Strike a Deal
One possible solution to mitigate some of the added expense is to negotiate or renegotiate travel-related supplier contracts. Having a contract in place and ensures the service provider of business and gives them a greater leeway to lower fares for select clients.
Problem: Corporate Noncompliance
A major problem for over half of American businesses who frequently send employees for face-to-face meetings is noncompliance with corporate travel regulations. This may come in the form of tardy expense reports, mismanaged or misplaced receipts, or a misunderstanding of what items are reimbursable.
Solution: Employee Training and Mobile Expense Management
Unfortunately, many employees do not fully understand company policies regarding travel as it is not a facet of their everyday work lives. Business owners may find that quarterly training with employees who travel frequently will help them understand the importance of filing paperwork on time and with the appropriate supporting documents. As well, allowing employees access to a mobile travel expense report app will negate the need for a paper trail making it easier for employees to comply.