The MacNair Travel Leadership Blog

5 Benchmarking Tips to Drive Travel Savings & Compliance

Posted by Mike MacNair on Oct 25, 2016 12:00:00 PM

The importance of benchmarking cannot be overstated. Goals that include realistic key performance indicators (KPIs) and strategic metrics are now commonplace within sales, finance, operations and procurement departments. Your corporate travel program or travel department should also research peer companies and identify benchmarks that align with your industry’s performance in order to set realistic KPIs and goals for travel savings and policy compliance. Most often a travel management company partner can help you identify this information and establish some key metrics to benchmark your program against.

Developing accurate and relevant benchmarks can be challenging – especially if you’ve not previously tracked specific results for your travel program. The following five benchmarking tips will provide control and visibility into your corporate travel program, resulting in major savings.

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Topics: Benchmarking

Data Sharing: Providing Visibility in Managed Travel Programs

Posted by Mike MacNair on Oct 18, 2016 12:00:00 PM

In today’s data-driven world, companies have access to all types of valuable traveler data: from personal information to preferred airlines and hotels. Travel managers can see employee preferences for travel times, direct or indirect flights, and seat choices. By analyzing credit card usage, it is easy to discover where and when travelers ordered meals or if they watched a movie on the plane.

But what do you do with all of this data? Share it! By disseminating travel data among different business groups in your organization, your managed travel program gains visibility. Turning raw travel data into valuable information can help travel managers improve the travel policy, track traveler compliance and help in budget forecasting.

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Topics: Managed Travel, Data Sharing

Unmanaged Travel vs. Managed Travel 101

Posted by Mike MacNair on Oct 17, 2016 10:49:44 AM

Understanding the key differences between unmanaged travel vs. managed travel can help organizations objectively and accurately determine opportunities for process improvements that can improve their bottom line. The table below compares an unmanaged travel program to a managed one, broken down in to nine phases: starting with (1) Policy and Procedure Development and ending with (9) Reviewing and Refining the overall program.

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Topics: Managed Travel, Travel and Expense Management

How Well Does the Sharing Economy Work with Your Travel Policy?

Posted by Mike MacNair on Oct 6, 2016 12:00:00 PM

With sustained success in the consumer sector, sharing economy companies like Airbnb, Lyft, Curb and Uber, have committed to provide corporate travelers the same level of convenience as standard hotel and transportation suppliers, at a reduced cost. In July 2014, Airbnb for Business was launched, offering 500,000 listings (of 800,000) that it considers appropriate for corporate travelers. That same year, Uber announced a customized service for corporate travelers.

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Topics: travel policy, sharing economy

Is Travel and Expense Occupational Fraud Killing Your Bottom Line?

Posted by Mike MacNair on Sep 27, 2016 12:00:00 PM

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) defines occupational fraud as “the use of one’s occupation for personal enrichment through the deliberate misuse or misapplication of the employing organization’s resources or assets.” In ACFE’s 2016 Global Fraud Study, Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse, they estimated that worldwide, organizations lose up to 5 percent or $3.7 trillion of their annual revenue due to occupational fraud.

According to the same report, expense reimbursement fraud ranked as the fifth highest category for corporate occupational fraud (see Figure 8 below). A lack of corporate travel policy can leave the door wide open for dishonest travelers to commit expense reimbursement fraud unless proper controls are put in place.

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Topics: Corporate Travel, Travel Management, TMc, Travel Fraud

Shift Your T&E Management Process from Chaos to Calm

Posted by Mike MacNair on Sep 20, 2016 12:00:00 PM

At MacNair, we use the term Travel Anarchy™ or unmanaged travel to describe organizations that have a chaotic Travel and Expense Management (TEM) process. While many organizations depend on travel to drive growth, those that are completely unaware of managed travel processes end up creating unnecessary costs for themselves in both time and money. Granted, it can be challenging for organizations to see the benefits and measurable impacts of a travel program without having a structured Managed Travel process in place. When this disconnect occurs, Travel Anarchy™ ensues.

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Topics: T&E, Travel and Expense Management

The Right Approach to Reducing Travel Spend by 10-20%

Posted by Mike MacNair on Sep 13, 2016 12:00:00 PM

Many Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) believe the most advantageous way to reduce corporate travel cost is to eliminate Travel Management Company (TMC) fees, but cutting TMC fees is a short- sighted approach when it comes to saving money on corporate travel expenses.

A forward-looking approach is to implement a strategy that takes advantage of the significant value TMCs provide organizations. A TMC can leverage exceptional high-volume discounts unavailable to the traveler, while establishing and enforcing policies and procedures to help facilitate preferred supplier agreements. A TMC should introduce automated pre-trip authorization processes and reduce the number of rogue travelers within an organization.

An experienced TMC can save SMEs up to twenty percent in additional savings on corporate travel spend each year while supporting travel policies that improve traveler productivity. This article discusses key areas SMEs should focus on in order to reduce corporate travel costs, far more than the minimal savings that would be realized by cutting out a TMCs’ booking fees.

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Topics: Travel Management Company, Travel Costs

Reduce Costs With an Intelligent Travel Policy

Posted by Mike MacNair on Sep 8, 2016 12:00:00 PM

Companies of all shapes and sizes and in all industries are under continued pressure to find ways to reduce their costs, while improving efficiencies, productivity and performance. It would seem that after surviving “the great recession,” organizations have already exhausted the most obvious cost cutting measures.

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Topics: travel policy

BTN’s Small/Midsize Enterprise Travel Management Report: Survey Recap

Posted by Mike MacNair on Aug 30, 2016 12:00:00 PM

As a Travel Management Company (TMC), we look for valuable information to share with our current and future customers that will help identify the key components of a successful travel management program. We do this while connecting the dots with corporate travel policies and benchmarking data that will ultimately lead our partners’ to success.

Recently, Business Travel News’ (BTN) released their annual Small & Midsize Enterprise Travel Management Report. The report examined travel programs with up to $12 million in annual United States-originating air volume, which equated to approximately $1 million to $24 million in total business travel volume. It also accounted for hotel, car, meals and other ancillary travel spend. In the report, BTN shared that Travel Managers have six primary focuses:

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Topics: technology, T&E, travel policy, risk management

3 Reasons Operations Managers Should Outsource Travel Management

Posted by Mike MacNair on Aug 23, 2016 12:00:00 PM

During the company’s height of growth in the 1980s and 90s, GE’s famous CEO, Jack Welch, was asked what his secret was to running one of the largest companies in the world in a similar growth trajectory to that of a much smaller company, while simultaneously reducing GE’s underlying cost structure. His answer was remarkably simple.

He replied, “We realized that our back office, is someone else’s front office. That the non-crucial functions that are important to business execution can often be done by somebody else at a lower cost (not necessarily a lower spend) than we could on our own; and it could be done better.” And thus began one of the most valuable trends in business – the outsourcing of services functions to companies that specialize in those areas (please note this is not the same practice as offshoring).

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Topics: Outsourcing