Survey: Travel risk management practices are not suitable for remote workers and travelers

According to respondents, there is a lack of support for new workforce behaviors, particularly telecommuting and vacation travel. About 64% of travelers do not know whether they are covered by their organization’s protection and medical support when they continue their business trip for the purpose of leisure. Respondents believe that companies are doing a fairly good job of maintaining traditional travel risk management.

Workers who don’t feel safe while traveling are less likely to stay with their employer

The well-being of people should be the top priority of any company. Otherwise, employers risk harming the physical and mental health of employees and reducing job satisfaction, which can lead to a loss of talent. People who don’t feel safe and cared for are unlikely to stay. This can damage reputation, increase costs and negatively affect the company’s performance. On the contrary, managing employee risk properly will give organizations an advantage in recruiting and retaining talent.

“This survey demonstrates the growing need for a shift in thinking from travel risk management to people risk management,” said Mike Jansen, chief operating officer and chief commercial officer of BCD Travel. “Today’s duty of care policies must take into account the realities of a hybrid or remote workforce, as well as changing values ​​around the well-being of travelers.”

Separate BHD survey in March, buyers put travelers’ well-being second only to duty of care in the corporate travel program. While some business traveler respondents in the latest traveler survey in August said their employers provide post-trip support, such as personal leave (13%), post-trip feedback requests (11%) or follow-up during travel security incidents or medical incidents (10%), 39% said they do not receive support. Another 16% said they did not know if such support was available.

More men than women feel unsafe during a business trip

  • 75% of travelers rarely or never feel safe during a business trip. Of the 23% who sometimes or regularly feel unsafe, a slightly higher percentage of men than women feel unsafe, and an even higher percentage of non-binary/nonconforming travelers feel unsafe.
  • When travelers feel unsafe, it is most often when they are walking down the street (44%), driving in an unfamiliar place (43%) or using public transport (40%). Travelers are less likely to feel unsafe in a restaurant (6%) or in a hotel room (6%).
  • The top actions travelers take to ensure their own safety include separating their hotel room key from the envelope (50%), using a taxi or ride-hailing service instead of public transportation (46%), and checking hotel fire escape routes. (40%).
  • The top support measures from their organizations that travelers say help them feel safer while traveling are travel and security alerts (61%), central emergency contact (53%), safety information of the destination before the trip (51%), and clear instructions on what to do in an emergency (44%).

What can travel buyers do to better address duty of care gaps?

Travel buyers must establish and maintain effective and accessible travel risk management programs as part of a culture that promotes health, safety and security. Some areas to address are:

  • A hybrid workforce
  • New sets of locations
  • Work from anywhere policies
  • Political unrest
  • Changing values
  • Traveler health
  • Risk reduction
  • Price

Companies can also turn to technology tools such as BCD Alert™, COVID-19 Information Center and TripSource® safety messaging to manage travel risks and inform employees of changing travel rules and risks.

Click below for full survey results. Survey: Travel risk management practices are not suitable for remote workers and travelers

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