The Travel Factor: Six Tips to Attract and Retain Top Talent

By Jessica Larkin

Attracting and retaining top talent is crucial for any company. Competitive salaries, top-notch health insurance, retirement plans, personal time off, and parental leave have typically been the focus of employee benefits packages. However, with business travel frequency skyrocketing and an increasing remote workforce, employers also need to think about the impact travel policies and expense management play in getting—and keeping—stellar employees.

In fact, according to MMGY’s 2016 Global and Arc Report, 83% of road warriors say that a new employer’s travel policy would be equally or more important than pay or responsibilities. Talk about a staggering statistic.
Happy Employees Perform Better

One of the primary goals of business travel is to get your team in the same room as customers and prospects. However, if your employees find your travel policies difficult and expense processes cumbersome, then business trips will become a dreaded part of the job—lending to a less than stellar performance onsite.

Now, if your employees know that policies are supportive and expensing is a breeze, spending time away from their families becomes far less of a burden. Some companies even successfully turn business travel into a perk! The best way to achieve a more seamless travel and expense experience is by implementing a travel management company.

Tip #1: We All Need a Little Support

Some of the top travel-related stress points for professionals include managing itineraries and travel delays or cancellations. We believe it is essential to have 24/7/365 support via chat, phone, and email to ease these pain points. At TravelBank, our goal is to provide peace-of-mind to employees, regardless if a flight is delayed, there is a check-in issue, or a need to change plans.

Tip #2: Take the Headache Out of Expense Reporting

A big perk of working with a TMC like TravelBank is centralized expense reporting management. As a result, creating, editing, and submitting expenses is much more streamlined. For instance, rather than requiring your employees to bring back mountains of receipts, they can simply snap a photo of a receipt using the mobile app, forward email receipts directly to an expense queue, and upload saved images to a report. We also offer a credit card sync feature. TravelBank can be used through the mobile app or on desktops—both options offer the ability to edit the charge and add details. Once an employee has added all expenses, the report can be submitted by a simple tap. Easy!

Tip #3: Timely Reimbursements

If your organization does not provide corporate credit cards, timely reimbursements are crucial when it comes to employee satisfaction. If you have employees booking travel on personal cards, you can’t expect them to wait weeks or months to be reimbursed for travel—accruing interest on credit cards. It is essential to reimburse in a timely manner.

Tip #4: Provide a One-Stop Compliance Shop

By utilizing a TMC that builds travel policies directly into the booking and expense platform, employees will no longer need to jump from app to app or website to website. As we’ve stated previously, “This is especially helpful as your travel program grows and corporate travel policies become highly nuanced, encompassing approval and reimbursement processes, meal expense parameters, client entertainment, flight bookings, hotel reservations, ground transportation, rental cars, and even travel rewards.”

Tip #5: Reward Cost-Conscious Travelers

What better way to attract and retain top talent than to offer an incentive program to encourage spending the company’s money wisely. Not only will it encourage employees to treat the company’s money like it’s their own, but they will love the rewards—redeemable with brand favorites like Amazon, Uber, Lyft, and more.

Tip #6: Listen to Your Road Warriors

When it comes to managing your corporate travel program, the bottomline can’t be the only consideration if attracting and retaining top talent is a business goal. Remember that travel policies need to be reviewed and updated on a regular basis. Additionally, one-size fits all can be detrimental to your team. It’s essential to talk to your road warriors to learn what is working, what policies travelers despise, and how to continually evolve your managed travel program to ensure you are supporting your most valuable asset—your employees.

Using Travel as a Competitive Differentiator

As noted by Inc., “With the national unemployment rate reaching a 17-year low, almost two-thirds of fast-growth entrepreneurs cite finding and retaining good people as their greatest obstacle to growth, according to a survey of 2017 Inc. 500 companies.”

To attract and retain top talent, employers need to find ways to differentiate themselves from similar organizations. One of the best ways to do this is by offering managed travel to support and reward employees—and to entice candidates.

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