Published on : Wednesday, February 20, 2019
FCM Travel Solutions, the Indian subsidiary of Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), Australia and KPMG today released an analytical whitepaper titled ‘Redefining Corporate Travel Management’ that presents businesses with a holistic approach towards business travel and helps setting benchmarks to evaluate the performance of their chosen travel partner.
According to World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), Business Travel contributed to a major chunk (77.5%) of Travel Spends in the Global Travel Market in 2017. Globally, Business travel spend has now been able to reach the pre-recession levels and it seems to have embarked on an unprecedented growth trajectory in recent years.
In the past year, rise in annual growth of business travel spend for India has been the highest among the top 15 business travel markets globally.According to Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the business travel spends in India stood at USD 37 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach USD 46 billion in 2019 with a projected annual growth rate of 11.5% – making India one of the world’s fastest growing business travel market. While India is the 7th largest business travel market globally, it is projected to be amongst the top5 travel markets by 2022.Furthermore, India-China-Indonesia (ICI) travel spend is predicted to reach USD 565billion in 2022 and is projected to be the largest in the world by 2035.
To truly recognize benefits of business travel, corporates need to look at their travel management programme in a holistic way. The whitepaper focuses on key mainstays that make up a successful travel management programme; ensuring Safety of employees, increasing cost Effectiveness of the programme, boosting Productivity of employees while travelling for business and greater Transparency within the programme. Thus, aiming to succour organizations by helping them adopt a comprehensive travel programme that can integrate and fulfil the needs of all the stakeholders involved.
The report also details that while currently women account for approximately 30% of the economically active workforce, they also account for nearly 25% of domestic business travellers. This number is expected to rise as women account for 41.6% of those enrolled in higher education and are entering high level positions in the professional hierarchy. As the number of women in business travel increases, the industry will have to adapt to cater to this trend. In order to ensure safety of women travellers, certain adjustments will have to be made across all stages of travel such as cab booking, flights, hotels, etc.
Mr. Rakshit Desai, Managing Director, FCM Travel Solutions, Indian subsidiary of FCTG, Australia, said, “The dynamics of business travel have been changing around the world in sync with the new age corporate traveller. The advent of millennial workforce has amplified the need for employers to understand the expectations and habits of the next generation of employees. This is leading to emergence of trends such as bleisure, value driven and mobile friendly business travellers, and an increase in women travellers. Corporate Travel Management Companies have the ability to streamline a corporate’s travel by deploying user-friendly integrated solutions like digitized approval workflows and reporting system. While assisting corporates in optimizing planning, approval and booking processes, TMCs also help corporates in shifting their traditionally offline processes like travel policies, approval matrices, expense management etc. online. This shift to digital processing will increase visibility into travel spends and trends, enabling comprehensive MIS reporting.”
Mr. Jaideep Ghosh, Partner and Head, Transport, Leisure and Sports, KPMG in India commented, “Corporate travel in India is being propelled by innovative technologies and traveller habits, fuelled by millennials. An effective travel management programme facilitates growth of organisations in this dynamic environment by allowing companies to focus on their core business and employees on their work. The whitepaper establishes the fact that through robust corporate travel management, India can achieve an even higher position in terms of business travel spends.”
Dr. Sanjay Pai, Head – Travel & Dir. Aviation, Larsen & Toubro Limited, said “With tech savvy and youthful thought process, organisations need to be well equipped to address the demands of their Corporate partners while maintaining their business deliveries. FCM Travel Solutions as our Corporate Travel Management partner, has been dynamic in adapting to the rapid change of digitalization and operations to be our reliable travel partner. The whitepaper provides an in-depth insight on what is expected to optimize travel costs and to have pre-controls in place – a win-win approach”
Mr. ManasDatta, Group CFO of Wockhardt, said, “Traditionally Pharmaceutical companies allocate a lot of budget towards travel. In today’s world, managing business travel is no more about just creating and organising bookings. There is a need for an employee engagement tool that no progressive organisation can ignore. FCM Travel Solutions manage our Corporate Travel and have developed a comprehensive travel programme that creates integrated and simplified policy-compliant processes that has helped us improve travel costs and also amplify employee productivity.”
Mr. Rajesh Padmanabhan, Director, Group CHRO, Welspun Group, said, “TMCs play a pivotal role in helping organizations run the travel function efficiently & optimize corporate travel expense better. With the convergence of innovative end–to–end integrated and automated solutions from FCM, we have witnessed considerable change in the way we manage our efficiencies & costs of travel. Features like automation, pre-travel approvals, self-booking tools and being able to customize according to the company are essential to Corporate Travel Management. I am confident that this whitepaper will truly benefit corporates to ‘Redefine Corporate Travel Management’ and enhance their productivity & performance.”
Communication and connectivity is essential for today’s traveller. Business travellers want control over their travel without hampering business objectives.Thus, by working on and building upon the four pillars, TMCs can continue to demonstrate the value they provide while corporations can embrace changes in their managed travel programs.