With the world changing to a global economy, companies and organizations have found themselves inundated with tremendous opportunities to grow and explore. However, the current economic uncertainties have cast shadow on this near perfect economic scenario. The unstable economic and market conditions have pressurized companies and organizations to adopt drastic measures to cut back on costs. Sometimes such moves can prove costly. Take for instance the case of business travels. In their effort to attain economic stability, most companies reduce their business travels considerably. But the fact of the matter is that business travels are an indispensable part of the corporate world and any move to curb business travels can adversely affect their potential growth prospects.
Importance of Business Meetings
Today business travels are showing a steady decline unfortunately due to the faltering global economy. Companies having partners, branches, and associates all over the world when considering the expenses involved with business travels, reduce their travel budgets and depend more on technology for communication. Technology definitely has shrunk distances and has helped in saving considerable time and effort but can it maximize profit? Cutting travel budgets is widely considered as a smart move but is it really so? The answer is a big no because eliminating business travels can lead to negative outcomes such as loss of revenue and profit. Business meetings, as it always have been, stand for nothing but business. No other forms of business communications could guarantee the kind of success that business meetings or face-to-face meetings can bring about. Businesses are nothing but building of relationships which could be strengthened only through face-to-face meetings. Hence, instead of elimination of business travels or restriction of business travel budgets what is required is the implementation of a proper system to better manage and reduce business travel expenses.
Travel Expense Management Software- The Solution
The travel expense management software takes away the drudgery involved in travel processes. It makes business travel management easy, effortless and cost effective. By streamlining processes, it effectively reduces the complexity of business travels. Basically, it provides employers and employees greater visibility and control over business travel expenses.
In a failing economy, spending cuts are inevitable as there is definitely the need to put a stop on superfluous spending. But before taking any decision, it is very important to make sure whether those expenses are actually superfluous or not.
There was a time when companies favored face-to-face meetings to establish, maintain and grow business relations. But when the economic and market conditions became volatile and unpredictable the companies and enterprises were forced to look for green pastures. The advancements in communication technology in the form of internet, email, VOIP, video conferencing, and so on made companies to look at technology as a less expensive replacement for face-to-face meetings. Advocates of virtual meetings considered it as a great time and money saver. But the fact of the matter is however cost effective or time saving option virtual meetings might be, nothing can replace the human elements that is ingrained in face-to-face meetings. These human elements go a long way in developing mutual trust, good faith and confidence, which no amount of virtual meetings can bring about. Hence, in today’s global business environment, business travels are the indispensable tools for building and fostering business relationships.
It is a fact that in a slow economy steps must be taken to cut back on costs but it should never be at the cost of company’ potential growth prospects. Business travel is definitely one of the largest corporate costs but rather than reducing business travel budgets, a proper management of business travel expenses can do the trick. Instead of taking extreme cost cutting measures that impede company’s progress and development, enterprises should look at effective business travel management to facilitate continuous growth and development.
In today’ tight unpredictable economy, most companies and enterprises cut down business travel budgets as a means to tide over financial crisis. Such a move do more harm than good since studies have proved that those companies that increase their business travels during economic slowdown succeed in making new business deals than those who cut down business travels. Hence, what is required is the development of business travel management as a core function of businesses. This would help companies to
· Properly manage company’ travel policy
· Negotiate shrewdly with vendors
· Efficiently manage day-to-day activities of the corporate travel program
· Ensure adequate levels of safety and security for travelers
· Proper credit-card management
· Effective management of travel and expenses (T&E) data
More and more companies are now depending on expense management software for effective corporate travel management. This helps them to lower direct travel costs, to speed up employee’s travel administration, to ensure that internal rules and policies are followed, and to achieve better travel spend analysis.
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The aggressiveness of a competitive market has given birth to business expansions across geographical boundaries. With a multicultural workforce and customer base spread across various regions, traveling to these locations is imperative. Though with a number of technologically innovations these are possible over wide corporate networks, but an in-person interaction makes a matters a lot different. Therefore, one of the strategies of the budgetary committee of an organization is to manage the travel and expenses of the top-of-line-executives to be kept at a minimum.
Understanding the expanding business world, a number of organizations have entered into providing software services for handling the business travel management. Of these the leaders in the industrial sector providing these services have exploited the benefits of cloud computing and developed and designed software, which is delivered through the cloud and handles the travel and expense management of the organizational employees.
Being cloud based, this software provides an end-to-end visibility and control of travel management and business travel expenses. In other words a better spend analysis than the traditional expense management software. With a travel business network of banks, travel account holders, international booking systems, hotels, travel agents as well as car rentals, these service providers also has an integrated easy–to-use interface with account & invoice handling and a travel profile management system. In other words, this software automatically controls and optimizes the travel expense management of the organization.
The expense management software has the business process rules configured for customization. With a set of simple to use interfaces and end-user tools, it facilitates the profile management of the customers and also provides a wide range of tools for the administrative purposes such as business process rules configuration and master data management. The use of such cloud based integrated software facilitates organizations to significantly reduce travel administration costs by nearly 75%, provides compliances with tax and regulations, Security of data as well as company and traveller profile management.
The pre-integrated business network of banks, travel agents etc facilitates accounts settlement through electronic payment process and can also be seamlessly integrated for expedition of travel claims, besides other HR functions. All these strategic roadmaps make the Expense management software a customer friendly package.