Working hours aren’t limited to the tasks performed at the office. The way companies make their personnel travel for business-related duties says a lot about work done outside the enterprise. As organizations move into emerging markets in pursuit of new revenue streams, they are often sending employees to plant corporate flags in unfamiliar territories, and they’re experiencing good results. Harvard Business Research found that for every $1 that companies invest in employee business travel, they earn $2.90 in profits.
However, it’s vital that those benefits shouldn’t come at the expense of your staffers’ well being. No matter whether your firm’s travel policy is thrifty or generous, it can have a significant impact on employee experience. Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to improve productivity, decrease travel stress, and help both your company and your employees thrive.
Use these tips to make business travel a more enjoyable experience:
1. Streamline Payments
Although companies don’t have to pay their employees for commuting, they must compensate for travel time if it’s part of the work. For instance, if you require employees to travel abroad for service calls, you must pay them for the time spent traveling to and from clients. Also, if you need staffers to utilize company-provided transportation from the headquarters to the work site, you might have to compensate them for this time. Therefore, ensure to create a travel budget for employees and have resources to compensate them immediately in case they experience a funds shortfall.
Incredibly, Ria and other similar remittance companies have made it convenient to transfer money overseas to several locations around the world. Once companies create an account with them, they can select the country they want to send the money to, and see foreign exchange rates and fees for conducting the transaction in real time. In addition, you get the option to transfer funds directly to an employee’s bank account or have it delivered to them, depending on the availability of the remittance provider’s home delivery service.
2. Educate Employees on Cultural Differences
Help those whom you’ve picked for business travel understand how suppliers and clients in a particular market conduct business. Also, educate them on how processes and practices may vary from those in your home country. Failing to realize even the subtle differences could have a negative impact on your reputation. Gestures that may be considered fine in the U.S. can be offensive in some countries. Likewise, body language like pointing or nodding aren’t globally consistent.
Therefore, encourage employees to learn about the cultural differences. If they’re traveling to areas where social unrest is a possibility, have a program that informs them about the risks and teaches them what to do in case of emergencies. In addition, email them web-based resources that provide security advice on particular countries. And don’t assume that someone knows about the cultural differences and risks because they travel often.
3. Make It Stress-Free
Permit your employees to take the foot off that gas pedal and engage in leisure time when they’re not working on company projects. For instance, if you’re making them travel for a project that should take a maximum of 3 days to complete, let them stay the week and return to the office on Sunday. It’s also a perfect opportunity to reduce costs as return flights are usually cheaper for longer stays.
Also, see if your employees can enjoy the perks of a frequent flyer program. Both airlines and hotels provide loyalty discounts to frequent flyers, which can get travelers free meals, discounted rooms, business class upgrades and exclusive privileges like free spa sessions. Conduct research to know which plans would work well for your organization.
With these measures in place, you’d give your personnel a strong reason to look forward to business travel.
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