Corporate responsibility for travellers is vital but the lines can often be blurred by traveller and policy choices

06 November 2015

As a result of increased global opportunities, business travellers are finding themselves crossing new frontiers and working in many different, and sometimes challenging, environments.

The holy grail of travel risk management is to know where an employee is at any given time. Yet even in the 21st century, with all the technology we have available, it's sometimes just not possible.

In general, employers know and understand that they have a Duty of Care however, with the increase in temporary contracts and sometimes complex joint ventures, the lines of responsibility become blurred. This means that companies will have to work harder at staff training and education, rather than rely on technical solutions.

The emerging 'bleisure' trend can increase security risk exposure for travelling staff. In July this year surveyed 2,000 British workers and found four out of 10 of those questioned who travel for work like to add extra days onto trips so they can enjoy personal travel without incurring the extra cost. The results added that "almost half (46%) of British businessmen and women admit they try and choose a higher-rated or more expensive hotel when they travel for work than they would on personal trips they pay for themselves".

There is a proven link between budget travel and security: when the traveller adds a couple of days onto a business trip, they will often go down-market which, in security terms, means an increased risk. Moreover, they are likely to be 'off radar' and will not feature on any travel-tracking database. Is the company still liable? Is there a moral Duty of Care, if not contractual?

With the recently reported upturn in business travel, 73% of business travellers say they have witnessed a stricter travel policy since the credit crunch, with only a third saying they have seen it ease since the economy improved.  So is there space to improve the travel experience for employees?

Could much-needed and fairly modest expenditures result in a marked improvement in traveller morale, wellbeing and confidence?

Continual investment in corporate travel assistance is critical to ensure that company representatives are fully engaged and productive when overseas. An excellent level of care and investment in unsurpassed financial cover has to be good for employee morale.  Like a concierge club - with useful traveller-focused benefits and comprehensive worldwide support.

For more information please contact: