21 Oct How can TMCs recover post-Covid?
The corporate travel industry is estimated to lose $820 billion (£655bn) in revenue this year; $190bn in Europe specifically. In fact, a recent poll from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) shows 92 percent of companies have cancelled or suspended most or all international trips. As a result, travel management companies (TMCs) have suffered huge losses.
How long it takes for corporate travel to return to its pre-Covid levels remains to be seen. But the TMCs which emerge from the crisis stronger than before will be the ones who seize the opportunity to review their strategies and pivot to meet the changing client demands.
Reviewing the RFP
Covid-19 has forced many hotels to implement new health & safety and security procedures, enabling them to demonstrate to guests their safety comes first. However, even prior to the pandemic, accommodation options have had the highest potential to be a “weak link” in meeting duty of care responsibilities in corporate travel programming. This is often down to the RFP process lacking both independence and consistency.
The historical approach of providing a cursory look over RFP responses to health, safety, hygiene, and security questions is no longer satisfactory. This has been the driving force behind the new ISO Travel Risk Management standard (ISO 31030), which requires organisations to seek independent confirmation of the security and safety standards of hotels.
A combination of the upcoming ISO 31030 standard and expectation of higher standards of health & safety in accommodation programmes makes it essential for TMCs to review their RFP process.
Collaborating through Covid
GSA is working with key industry TMC partners, including Blue Cube Travel, Advantage Travel Partnership and ACE Travel, to ensure TMCs are equipped with the right tools to reassure clients their travel programmes adhere to stringent health & safety and security policies.
Bex Deadman, Managing Director of Blue Cube Travel says: “We cannot emphasise enough how important the benchmark and independent accreditation that GSA is setting. The hospitality industry is desperately in need of a set of standards that work across all regions and deals with health, safety and security directly for our travellers and suppliers staff.”
Leigh Cowlishaw, Global Supplier Partnership Director at Advantage Travel Partnership says: “Our duty of care portfolio, of which GSA forms a vital part, ensures TMCs have the very best tools to offer their clients to protect their employees and to help build traveller confidence.”
Now more than ever, TMCs have the opportunity to drive forward robust and reconsidered travel programmes to meet the changing demands of their clients in a post-Covid world.
To find out how GSA can work with you and to hear more from our TMC partners, click here.