Whether you’re dissatisfied with your current business travel agency or looking to contract with one for the first time, there are a few key factors to consider when making your decision. Finding an agency that is the right fit can be key to ensuring your company continues to grow.
What Size Should the Agency Be?
Businesses that refer to themselves as “corporate travel agencies” can vary widely in size; some are run by individuals out of home offices, and others employ hundreds of people across the country.
Smaller agencies are often a good fit for newer companies that don’t need dedicated agents and a complex travel policy. These agencies might be mostly leisure, or might not even be full agencies—they might be just a friend of the owner. These arrangements can work for awhile, but at a certain point the company may begin to grow at a faster rate than the agency.
Larger agencies can offer specialty services and amenities that smaller companies can’t. For example, many of these agencies have long-standing relationships with particular airlines because they feed a large amount of business to these airlines. These relationships can mean better service and lower prices because the agencies have a certain amount of leverage.
In addition, larger agencies simply have more experience with complex travel situations. They can easily handle VIP travel and even security services. They have relationships with hotels and car rental companies across the country and the world. And they’ve dealt with nearly every travel emergency imaginable.
This new relationship can cause friction, as the company needs services like 24/7 response or dedicated agents that the small agency cannot provide. At this point, it might be time to think about contracting with a larger agency.
Do You Need Travel Reporting?
Travel reporting may seem like yet another bit of paperwork that will complicate the already-complicated numbers game that is running a business. However, a robust travel reporting system can be useful for both small and large businesses.
Cash is king for growing companies, and keeping a close watch on your travel finances can often mean the difference between black and red in a tight month. And for larger companies with lots of travel expenses, inefficiencies in travel expenditures are multiplied by the dozens or even hundreds of travelers—which can add up quickly.
High-quality travel expense reporting can indicate:
- Your top spenders
- How soon your travelers book their flights
- How closely your employees are following your travel policy
- Which destinations most of your money is going to
- And more!
These reports can provide insights that save you money and can even help you make more by spotting growth areas or opportunities.
Do You Need Help with a Travel Policy?
Young companies often don’t have an established travel policy, simply because they haven’t seen the need for one. And when it comes time to create one, they might not have any idea where to start. A larger travel agency can work with you to craft an effective travel policy that will ensure your employees are making the best choices for your company’s bottom line.
Establishing a travel policy can help ensure employees:
- Request flights and accommodations as soon as they’re aware of the need to travel
- Allow the travel agency to find the lowest fares rather than searching themselves
- Select appropriate rental transportation, insurance, and other considerations
- Cancel their hotel accommodations when plans change
As your business grows, it becomes more and more difficult to communicate your policy to employees and have them follow it appropriately. Compliance with a travel policy is often the most effective method for keeping your company in the black.
Working with WorldTravelService™
At WorldTravelService®, we have the experience and since to work with clients large and small. We have a lot of experience guiding businesses in building an effective travel policy, but we also work with many large companies and government agencies. If you’d like to learn more, or submit an RFI, contact us now.