The needs of businesses have evolved rapidly since 2020, but one topic has consistently emerged at the top of the list for corporate travel programs: risk management.
To keep employees safe and healthy on the road, many organizations have reshaped travel programs to include a stronger emphasis on duty of care through robust policies and pre-trip authorization steps. To help travel managers in these efforts, Direct Travel has partnered with Crisis24, a GardaWorld company. This partnership adds 24/7 security and consulting to service offerings along with AI capabilities that strengthen risk management programs and expand crisis response beyond normal parameters.
Based on our findings working with Crisis24, we’ve broken down the primary areas to consider within risk management along with guidance on how to enhance policy and practices.
Identify and Prevent Potential Threats
When approaching risk management policy, it’s important to assess high impact threats that will affect travel and employee health. The high-impact category includes flight crashes, detainment abroad, cybersecurity attacks, social unrest, terrorism, natural disaster, and virus and disease contraction, such as COVID-19. Reliable and technologically advanced location and communication tools are key factors when these types of threats arise and disaster occurs.
Adopting critical measures, or responses, to address these threats can be accomplished through two main approaches: preventative and preparative. A preventative strategy might include steps like requiring travelers to be vaccinated before visiting an area with disease outbreaks or avoiding travel to said area altogether. The U.S. State Department posts four tiers of travel advisories for destinations, which your organization may choose to adhere to as a preventative step.
From a policy standpoint, industry experts recommend adopting key preventative tactics, such as protecting essential teams in the event of a plane crash by booking C-suite executives on different flights. Another smart way to mitigate risk is to promote and support “booking within policy.” When travelers don’t comply with their organization’s travel policy, it can cause serious duty of care issues.
Many preventative measures and tools can be found in our Travel Intelligence Hub. This resource contains the latest CDC updates, TSA information, and travel advisories. Our comprehensive hub also features the best guidelines for employees on the road as well as safety and health considerations while returning.
Prepare for Obvious Threats
Many “high-likelihood” travel events can’t be avoided on a regular basis. Some of the most common are dangerous weather conditions, delayed or cancelled flights, jet lag/fatigue, and general illness. This is where organizations can deploy preparative tactics to mitigate risk.
The goal with a preparative approach is to lessen the impact of these events on the traveler. Preparative tools may involve a travel alert system that monitor for incidents impacting trips as they unfold or a mobile app that allows travel managers to communicate directly with travelers.
With multichannel communication, travel managers can quickly conduct wellness checks in the event of a threat or dangerous event. A prime example is reaching several employees simultaneously within a region where a terrorist attacl has occurred. In less than a minute, a wellness survey can be sent that prompts impacted employees to click on any immediate needs, alerting managers and HR staff of current safety status.
Through our partnership with Crisis24, we provide tools for communication and real-time travel alerts to inform travelers about breaking situations or changing travel conditions around the world. This may be a natural disaster like a hurricane, or a disruption to travel, such as a rail strike or airport delays. As the events develop, alerts are automatically emailed with essential information on transportation, health, weather, security, and how to manage the situation on the ground.
“Our strategic partnership with Crisis24 allows us to leverage the expertise of each organization to deliver best in class services at a time when safety and security has never been more important or more valued by our clients,” said Darryl Hoover, Direct Travel’s Chief Technology Officer.
Get Risk Management Expertise
Putting risk management policies and plans into place can seem overwhelming when considering the potential threats, travel obstacles, and security protocols in play. This is even more so the case for those trying to piece together the right tools from various vendors rather than relying on one trusted travel partner.
Direct Travel understands the challenges within duty of care that may vary based on business size, which is why we offer tiered levels of program options and critical tools to help ensure safety and wellness for your employees. Our industry experts and advanced tech platforms simplify risk management leaving travel managers with peace of mind and more time for big picture items.