In simple words, the duty of care can be defined as the moral and fiduciary responsibilities of an employer to safeguard employees’ physical and psychological health. An organization must meet its duty of care obligations by protecting employees from various risks when they perform professional responsibilities.
What is the Duty of Care in Corporate Travel Management?
Companies and startups keep onsite employees comfortable and safe by optimizing workplace safety. At the same time, they must ensure the comfort and safety of employees traveling for work purposes by mitigating a variety of business travel risks.
While streamlining corporate travel management, decision-makers focus on implementing comprehensive duty of care programs. These programs focus on identifying, assessing, and meeting various risks employees face before, during, and after business trips.
We can understand the significance of duty of care in corporate travel management by answering two important questions – why should organizations take the duty of care obligations to work travelers seriously, and how do businesses meet the duty of care obligations to work travelers?
Why Should Organizations Take Duty of Care Obligations to Work Travelers Seriously?
As mentioned earlier, the duty of care is the legal and ethical obligation of a business. A company can reduce legal liabilities by meeting its duty of care obligations to employees traveling for work. Also, it can protect its reputation and image when employees engage in business travel safely and confidently.
An enterprise can increase the ROI of corporate travel only when employees engage in business travel confidently and remain stress-free during business trips. Employees find it easier to accomplish business travel goals when they can mitigate every business travel risk successfully.
At the same time, a company can avoid medical fees, legal expenses, and similar financial implications when employees stay safe and comfortable during business trips. Hence, investment in the duty of care resources helps organizations get higher returns while meeting legal obligations and reducing financial implications.
How Businesses Meet Duty of Care Obligations to Work Travelers?
While strategizing corporate travel management, organizations meet their duty of care obligations in a variety of ways. Some companies ensure work traveler safety by focusing on risk management programs and contingency planning.
At the same time, many organizations avail of comprehensive duty-of-care solutions by partnering with a travel management company or investing in travel management software. Here are some of the strategies enterprises use to meet the duty of care obligations to business travelers.
Travel Risk Management
While engaging in business travel, employees face a variety of risks – political unrest, natural disasters, terrorism, local laws, and entry restrictions. However, the risks vary according to the nature of the business trip and business travel destination.
For instance, employees face different business travel risks during domestic and international business trips. Likewise, they have to manage specific risks according to the business travel destinations.
While making business travel products, companies focus on the identification of common and unexpected business travel risks. In addition to gathering information from various sources, decision-makers assess business travel risks based on information and experiences of frequent work travelers.
Most organizations use contingency planning as a strategy to tackle unforeseen incidents and unfavorable events. They meet the duty of care obligations by making contingency planning an integral part of business travel management.
After identifying various business travel risks, decision-makers make contingency plans to help keep employees safe during emergencies like natural disasters and terrorist attacks. The contingency plans, real-time information, and support are delivered to the employee regardless of her current location.
Like business travel, business travel risks evolve regularly. A business can optimize contingency planning when the duty of care program is refined to mitigate emerging business travel risks.
It becomes easier for work travelers to manage specific business travel risks when they can access the right information at the right time. For instance, employees can manage flight delays, flight cancellations, and similar risks when they access real-time information.
Organizations keep employees safe and stress-free before and during business trips by ensuring real-time information delivery. They implement travel management solutions that deliver real-time information, travel rules, and travel restrictions as mobile alerts.
Most working professionals find it challenging to mitigate business travel risks due to a lack of experience and expertise. Organizations prepare employees to manage common business travel risks by providing training programs.
They implement training programs that make employees understand various business travel risks and prepare them to mitigate these risks using tips and best practices. Also, the program helps employees how to get relevant information and real-time support in case of emergencies.
Employees often experience stress during business trips due to their choice of business travel products. Organizations keep employees safe and comfortable during business trips by supporting self-travel booking.
They implement travel management software that enables employees to book their choice of flight, accommodation, car rental, and other business travel products by accessing extensive travel inventories. The new-age solutions recommend the best travel products to employees using intelligence technologies.
Real-Time Location Tracking
Modern tech solutions create opportunities for organizations to track the real-time location of employees when they travel for work. Real-time location tracking helps employers ensure business traveler safety by sharing relevant information and on-time support. Many organizations invest in technologies to assist employees during emergencies early and fully.
Leading travel management companies provide comprehensive duty-of-care solutions. They provide travel management software that tracks the real-time location of employees. Employees can use the software to get real-time information and support across locations.
Also, travel management companies boost the safety of business travelers by partnering with international health and security risk management firms. Many companies find it easier to meet the duty of care obligations by partnering with a reputable travel management company.
Every company or startup must meet its duty of care obligations by ensuring the comfort and safety of employees traveling for business purposes. While making business travel policies, organizations these days focus on providing comprehensive duty-of-care solutions to work travelers. However, companies and startups enhance business travel safety and mitigate business travel risks in different ways.