Are TMCs your new best friend?

BCD Travel and FCM Travel share their perspectives on navigating the new normal of risk management for planners.

The new norm requires companies to give employees the tools and support to increase their confidence and protect their health while travelling.
The new norm requires companies to give employees the tools and support to increase their confidence and protect their health while travelling. Photo Credit: gettyimages/Nutthaseth Vanchaichana

With in-person events ramping up as international border restrictions ease up, planners face a minefield of considerations in their meeting and events (M&E) programmes. Taking top priority among many organisations is that of duty of care.

 

The concept of duty of care for delegates has now broadened to include a wider scope of environmental, security and health-related considerations as planners learn to address ever-changing risk factors. 

According to FCM Travel’s Matthew DeMaris, Global Risk Product Leader, “Travellers now demand 24/7 access to health and safety information. Meeting and event organisers demand full buy-in from C-suite executives to determine venue locations, business continuity plans, and strategies to tackle Covid-19 surges or changes to entry/exit restrictions.

 

“As a result, more companies are leveraging on travel management companies (TMCs) to be the engine room for their traveller data and focal point for access to digital tools and resources.”

 

The implementation of new tools that automate the delivery of critical entry/exit, testing, and other health and safety information are critical to travellers, travel bookers, and travel managers, shared FCM Travel’s Matthew DeMaris (left) and BCD Travel’s Neeraj Singhal.
The implementation of new tools that automate the delivery of critical entry/exit, testing, and other health and safety information are critical to travellers, travel bookers, and travel managers, shared FCM Travel’s Matthew DeMaris (left) and BCD Travel’s Neeraj Singhal. Photo Credit: BCD Travel and FCM Travel

 

BCD Travel’s Neeraj Singhal, MD for Singapore & CFO for Asia Pacific added that clear travel patterns are emerging, with duty of care and Covid-19 infection levels at destinations remaining key considerations.

 

He added that meeting planners have reprioritised their agendas. “Client-facing and revenue-generating travel is taking priority over internal meetings and training, while large meetings are being reframed into smaller, more frequent meetings,” said Singhal.

 

“Travel is different now. Companies must give their travellers the tools and support to increase their confidence and protect their health. Travel managers must now transform their travel programmes into ones that help keep business moving safely and responsibly during uncertainty,” he added.

 

Covid-19 has effected big changes in travel risk management standards and digital transformation. The ISO 31030 published in September last year set the standards for how organisations should build, implement and evaluate a travel risk management strategy.

 

Efforts in digital transformation underwent massive shifts, with greater reliance on automation tools. “Since 2020, companies have invested a lot more in technologies that can help them both locate and communicate directly with their travellers,” said DeMaris.

 

Moving forward, a sound M&E programme will alleviate the biggest challenge faced by organisations in 2022 and beyond – compliance by travellers and the correct response during a critical incident.

 

To read more about the new landscape of risk management for meeting planners and travel managers, look out for our latest issue, M&C Asia January-March 2022.



Latest News