2019 promises to be a banner year for business travel.  The globe is shrinking.  Moreinternational non-stop flights and the spirit of commercial adventurism are growing trends.

Optimism is the name of the game right now, with companies poised to expand abroad to try their fortunes in other markets.

Let’s review some 2019 business travel trends.

Cfos Look to More People-First Policies

Business travel is no longer the bland experience of yesterday, with non-descript hotels, difficult flight arrangements due to fiscal restraint policies and the fatigue of travelling for business in less-than-ideal conditions.

Nowadays, business travel looks more like leisure travel, as companies acknowledge that traveling employees are offering something of a sacrifice to make themselves available for travel. 

Studies like the one which appeared in the Harvard Business Review last year have made it clear that business travelers are taking a hit, especially if they travel more than 14 days each month.  They were vulnerable to health implications like depression and anxiety.  They also tended to eat more and imbibe a little too freely at times.

Enter the CFO.  With hands once dedicated solely to the levers of company financial life, CFOs today are charged with items like managing employee performance.  4 out of 10 them are being deployed to oversee items directly related to organizational growth.  With data now at all our fingertips, factors like performance have become much more readily apparent as crucial to corporate success.

Forward-thinking CFOs are now focusing on creating policies around business travel which acknowledge the unwieldy and rigid nature of earlier models. Providing traveling employees with the tools they need to select advantageous flight and lodging which offers a good night’s sleep, healthy business travel has become an imperative.

The trend toward people-first policies around business travel will only grow in the coming year.  And that makes sense, because the Harvard Business Review also reports that companies who put their people first enjoy 4.2% greater profitability than those who back burner human resources need.

Balancing the Bottom Line

CFOs are uniquely placed to balance healthy business travel policies with the need for compliance and budgetary considerations.  Investing in the work environment and everything that’s associated with it has been demonstrated to pay dividends in employee satisfaction and performance.

And then, there’s retention.  Nobody’s going to stay with a company that’s not aware of their needs as a road warrior and doesn’t seem to care that they have any.

When people leave, companies pay – big.

Re-tooling culture by expanding the CFO’s role ensures that a balance between fiscal considerations and the wellness of employees is arrived at, toward the wellness of the entire organization.

Incentive Travel Group

In the middle of re-tooling your corporate travel policy to accommodate the needs of your road warriors?  ITG is your outsourced solution.

We create corporate travel and incentive programs that honor employee need.  By taking the details off your plate and putting them on ours, you get an extension of your human resources that serves your agenda and honors your employees.

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