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September 2022, Virtual
September 29 2022, Virtual
The security and safety risks faced by business travellers are often overlooked by employers, theBBT Forum has heard.
While many companies place great importance on financial and strategic risk, the wellbeing of the traveller is not a high level problem. This is the view of a panel at the BBT Forumheld at the Grange City hotel in London earlier this week.
BCD Travel's director of sales and marketing Tony McGetrick said there is “a bit of a paradox” in terms of risk and business travel and because the risks can’t threaten the company financially they are often not seen as important.
“Business travel is inherently risky but we find this is often underestimated, at the high level there’s more prominence on financial and strategic risk, because travel related risks are often seen as low level and unlikely to put a company out of business,” McGetrick said.
The panel discussed how the growth in travel to emerging markets is causing increased risk to travellers and the company. This included reputational risk, safety, security and data risk.
Ted Jones, CEO, Northcott Global Solutions said safety risk can differentiate because of what department it falls under in an organisation.
“When it falls under the HR department it’s usually pretty well monitored and controlled, but with certain aspects of this responsibility if it sits outside of HR other areas just pay lip service to it.
“It’s not something that is serious for many departments until there’s an event then suddenly there’s an immense amount of activity and focus.”
A buyer at the forum said “naivety” of some travellers often enhances the risk to their safety and companies should look at disciplinary procedures for these employees.
“Complacency and lack of awareness means corporate travellers don’t always appreciate the risk factor when travelling.
“While education is very important, another solution could be to make regular breaching of travel risk a disciplinary issue within your organisation.
“You have to determine what that breach of travel policy will be but if you make that a disciplinary issue you might find a better compliance and prevent serious security risks.”
The buyer added: “Sadly the answer is you’re never going to be able to avoid emergencies they are going to happen but you must mitigate it as much as possible.”
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The next BBT Forum will be held on October 3. To book your place contact [email protected] or call call +44 (0)207 821 2700.