The ISO 31030 Travel Risk Management Guidance for Organisations is live, by Bob Quick

The ISO 31030 Travel Risk Management Guidance for Organisations is live, by Bob Quick

After months of discussion about the ISO 31030 Travel Risk Management Guidance it is now live. At Global Secure Accreditation we have been involved in shaping it and bringing your feedback into the consultation process. It feels good to see it launched and start to have a positive impact on the health, safety and security of travellers as we return to business travel.

Why does it matter?

When the Corporate Manslaughter Act came into effect in 2008 in the UK it was widely accepted that business travel was an important area in which to demonstrate duty of care, but there was no yardstick to measure what that could actually mean in practise.

The creation of the ISO 31030 Travel Risk Management Guidance adds much needed definition in this area and lays out explicitly what should be expected of organisations who have traveling employees.

It was first proposed by the UK national standards body the British Standards Institute. ISO have then brought in experts from countries all around the world to work within the ISO conventions to develop this guidance standard.

How will it be used?

It is common for new ISO standards to exist as advisory standards and guidelines for a couple of years. They may then become certifiable standards where organisations can undergo an audit to become officially certified.

Initially we expect organisations to adopt the standard to revamp (or create) travel risk management programmes within their businesses before moving towards certification.

The guidance has been written so at to be applied proportionately and in context within organisations of differing sizes and complexity. There are a variety of factors that will drive organisations to follow the standard including:

If something goes wrong and an employee suffers loss or harm as result, it is likely that the employer organisation will be asked ‘did you follow the principles of the Travel Risk Management Guidance?’ The implications of disregarding or not having consulted its recommendations may be that a company will been judged not to have discharged its obligations responsibly.

Employee wellbeing
During the pandemic we have seen just how important it is for organisations to care for their employees and how demonstrating a high regard for employee wellbeing is an integral part of a strong employer brand. Extending that care to when employees are on the road is a fundamental part of looking after your workforce. The good news is most companies are deeply committed to this. The framework provided by ISO 31030 provides the opportunity to rebuild confidence in international travel after the pandemic.

Who will it impact?

Supply chain
Wherever you sit in the supply chain the new standard will have implications. As an example, we know from the conversations we are having with corporate travel managers that accommodation RFPs are likely to change to reflect the ISO 31030:2021 Guidance to Organisations.

What does ‘preferred’ mean now?
In a world where the term ‘preferred accommodation’ has been centred largely around negotiated rates, the standard explicitly says that preferred accommodation should be that which has been internally or independently security and safety assessed. This changes the nature of RFPs where traditionally a few security questions are asked for a hotel to self-certify their security standards. Now, corporate buyers will be looking for an official marque that they can recognise and share with employees.

This is just one of many ways in which the guidance will influence the supply chain as organisations build out their Travel Risk Management plans.

What next?

There are many sources of information – here are some of the ones we recommend and/or have collaborated to create.