Businesses are increasingly turning to corporate travel booking solutions to control costs and streamline the booking process. A properly configured solution enhances your traveler experience and maximizes your ability to control ticket costs, utilize preferred supplier deals, and better support travelers and those who process travel data.
As a travel manager, your goal is to find the best software system for your organization, so it's important to seek out a custom solution that matches your business's specific needs.
Statistics from Technavio show that the travel management software market is on track to increase at a compound annual growth rate of about 7 percent through 2020. With all of these different solutions, options and features, customization becomes an even more important factor. In the end, all the bells and whistles of a tool don’t matter if they are not aligned with the needs of your travel program.
A truly customized travel booking solution can provide a lot more benefits over out-of-the-box software including:
Online booking tool customization starts with the integration of your corporate travel policy. Adherence to the policy ensures that travel arrangements remain within the budget and partnerships with preferred vendors are supported. Evaluating each policy rule from a traveler’s perspective and then optimizing its configuration on the site will enhance the experience. And a better user experience means higher online adoption.
Once your travel booking solution accounts for the key corporate travel policy elements, you can take customization even further. Most online booking tools have sections for important communications. Posting custom messages that relay important information about company’s adoption goals, travel policy changes and overall performance can help increase compliance.
When you think about a customized online booking tool, you should also consider customizing the training materials for your travelers. Compliance is directly correlated with traveler education.
During traveler orientation seminars and/or webinars, instead of simply explaining the key policy criteria, demonstrate specific savings that can be achieved through policy compliance and discuss the ways in which your travelers can make the best travel decisions. There are certain customizable elements that are the key to increased engagement like:
- Including the most common city pairs and booking scenarios in training sessions.
- Showing the travel policy from the user’s perspective (e.g. if approval is required, show users how to add a travel approver to their profile to prevent trip cancellation).
Customizing your online booking tool means creating a better user experience, which leads to higher adoption rate and ultimately results in cost savings. While savings potential varies due to a number of different factors – such as whether the program is new or matured, and if it’s mandated or just recommended – the incremental savings from just increasing the usage of the tool can vary from 8% to 15%.
In addition, visual guilt can help drive savings from 18% - 20% simply by affecting what choice a traveler makes. Integrating your travel policy and customizing the way preferred suppliers, negotiated rates and lowest fare options are displayed for the user can help you reach your ROI goals.
How to Get Started
The key to successfully customizing your corporate travel booking tool is to work with your travel management company to identify your needs and match them to the solutions in the market to find technology that fits best. Direct Travel works with clients to tailor these solutions to the exact specifications necessary to yield excellent results.
Discover all the benefits that a customized booking solution can bring. Download our guide to learn how to implement customization strategies and maximize your booking tool to reach high adoption.