Technology has been voted the single biggest influencer on the corporate travel market over the last 20 years, and eight of the top 20 issues destined to change the face of travel management in 2014 are technology related.
This is according to research from the Business Travel Show, which commissions an annual buyer survey and Intelligence Report.
183 travel, category and procurement managers took part; 55 per cent with budgets in excess of £3 million and 65 per cent managing programmes with more than 500 business travellers. A further five Europe-wide senior buyers contributed to the Intelligence Report.
The top 20 issues are listed below, with the eight technology issues in bold:
|2||Travel management 2.0||12||Relaxation of policy|
|4||Sustainability||14||Integration of social and travel tools|
|5||Meetings management||15||Ancillary fees|
|6||Mobile apps||16||Airline consolidation|
|7||Technological developments||17||Risk management|
|8||Free Wi-Fi in hotels and on airlines||18||Virtual meetings|
|10||Terrorism||20||Less reliance on TMCs|
The research also showed that one per cent of buyers are now doing 100 per cent of their business online; 60 per cent are using travel alternatives such as video conferencing more than they did 12 months ago; one fifth has an app that allows clients to book travel with them; over one third uses online tools to drive compliance and almost two thirds believe mobile technology can help them keep travellers within policy.
The Business Travel Show, Europe’s leading corporate travel event taking place 4-5 February 2014 in London, launched the Business Travel Technology Showcase three years ago in recognition of the importance technology plays in the industry. The zone is home to exhibitors including Dataflexnet/Raileasy4business, Navitas, Cendyn Arcaneo, Spendvision, KDS and Lanyon. The Business Travel Show also runs a series of dedicated tech sessions:
- Mobile Technology – friend or foe for your travel programme?
- Rethinking data sourcing and aggregation
- People versus process – what works best for travel policy compliance?
- Enabling T&E nirvana with future proof technology
- Driving efficiency savings through tech
“The impact that technology has had on the business travel industry over the last 20 years is indisputable thanks in the most part to the internet, which made it possible to book trips online,” commented Business Travel Show event director David Chapple.
“These days technology impacts every touch point along the travel buying process and the next task for buyers is learning how to utilise and integrate technology in a way that keeps travellers happy AND compliant.”