Expert Tips to Keep Traveling Employees Better Protected
Safety concerns of business travelers are on the rise. More than 30% of travel managers recently said they have experienced an increase in questions about traveler safety.* As a result, global travel managers are looking to strengthen their duty of care programs. While no program can eliminate all risk, here are some important things to consider when building out duty of care and crisis management programs to help protect your mobile workforce.
Being proactive is crucial.
Making sure your company has the right programs, tools and partners at the ready is a huge advantage when a challenge or crisis develops. Select partners with strong duty of care strategies who offer a proactive plan that includes key contacts, well-defined communications hierarchy and channels, as well as regular communications and close coordination with your global travel managers. Your provider’s duty of care plan should also include:
- A secure way to quickly determine the status and whereabouts of your employees affected by a catastrophe or incident, including using emergency mass-notification systems and other technology when cell phone service is unavailable.
- 24/7/365 emergency call center that can respond to you and your employees immediately.
- A service account team manager, who can provide 24/7 availability to your global travel managers.
- A team of compassionate and experienced service associates who can help affected employees in highly stressful crisis situations.
Consider safety in all aspects of business travel.
Safety concerns have extended well-beyond airport security. Long term projects or assignments are often a large part of a company’s talent mobility program. But when employees are on extended business travel, it can be even more difficult to know their whereabouts on a daily basis – especially when they are in and out of hotels for all of their meals, workouts and errands. When placing employees in temporary accommodations, look for options which offer:
- Rigorous physical safety and security standards within properties.
- Protection of personally identifiable and confidential information.
- A global presence and local footprint for quicker coordination with building and property managers to confirm the well-being of your employees.
- A robust supply chain to place your displaced employees in immediate temporary accommodations as well as secure long-term housing during or after a crisis.
- The capability to help your employees with their personal property damage claims and security deposits.
- Full-scale management and reporting with all your employees’ lease details available immediately.
Use free tools.
Some useful no-cost tools are available from the U.S. Department of State that travel managers can encourage employees to use when traveling for business:
- The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, delivers real-time safety alerts about conditions in any country and helps the local U.S. Embassy contact travelers during an emergency.
- Other emergency resources help travelers locate the nearest embassy or consulate and offer emergency numbers for overseas citizens’ services and to report lost or stolen passports.
Oakwood developed its Duty of Care program to mitigate potential risks and minimizes the impact of unanticipated events. From disaster preparedness to crisis response to information safety and security, Oakwood has both proactive and reactive measures in place to provide uninterrupted service for all clients. Learn more about how Oakwood can help your business address traveler safety.
*“Take the Lead on Duty of Care for the Modern Business Traveler” study (third installment of ACTE and American Express GBT’s “Meet the Modern Business Traveler” research series)