As you know, travel is an essential part of almost any business. Business travel, such as trips and sales meetings, is critical to a company’s success because it facilitates connecting team members, introduces them to potential clients, and opens doors to untapped markets. When most people hear the term “business travel,” they immediately think of business trips. It’s important to remember that a company’s travel policy for its employees should cover more than just business trips.
This blog will cover the whats and hows of the “Employee Travel Policy”. From coming up with a simpler definition of an employee travel policy to some simple steps to create one, and anything in between, it will all be discussed here.
What is an Employee Travel Policy?
A set of guidelines that regulate the terms and conditions of business travel specifically for employees is an Employee Travel Policy. It is a subset of the broader Corporate Travel policy that includes other aspects of business travel, like vendor selection.
Employee travel policy governs every aspect of business travel, right from the booking process, choices of accommodation, and transport, to reimbursement procedures and stipulations for out-of-pocket expenses. The goal is to standardize the travel process, make it transparent and efficient, and control costs, all while ensuring the comfort and safety of the employees.
An Employee Travel Policy, is a subset of the broader Corporate Travel Policy.
Why is there a need for a separate policy for Employees?
Having a separate Travel Policy for employees is important for four main reasons:
- It can align business travel needs with the company’s strategic objectives. For example, you can create a rule to pre-approve Sales meetings in a specific location where frequent meetings happen so that there will be less resources and time spent on approvals.
- As the HR Manager or Law Consultant, you can cut costs by crafting a policy that makes clear what kinds of costs are allowed and not allowed
- Policies like this establish boundaries for spending and create a culture of accountability and fiscal responsibility among employees.
- In the case of travel-related disagreements or problems, you can use the policy as a reliable reference point to make sure that these situations are handled in a fair and consistent way.
In a nutshell, an Employee Travel Policy is a powerful tool for businesses. The policy helps to streamline their corporate travel, and reduce unnecessary expenditure. It also foster a sense of transparency and fairness in their travel procedures.
Employee Travel Policy vs. Corporate Travel Policy
As a first step, let’s define a corporate travel policy. A corporate travel policy, in a more general sense, is a set of rules that establishes the policies and procedures for all business-related travel within an organization. The HR manager or Law consultant outlines what is expected of all parties involved, from employees to management and even the travel management partner or vendors, if there is one. It basically sets the tone for how a company views and manages business travel.
An Employee Travel Policy, as we’ve already established, is a subset of the larger Corporate Travel Policy. It specifically addresses the role, responsibilities, and boundaries of employees during their business trips. Both the Corporate Travel Policy and the Employee Travel Policy explain the company’s stance on business travel in general. The main different is that the latter specifies how that stance affects individual employees.
The Major Distinctions
While there is some overlap, there are also significant differences. For example, while the Corporate Travel Policy may outline strategic goals such as aligning with the company’s sustainability efforts, the Employee Travel Policy will address how these goals are translated into action, such as a preference for public transportation over rental cars.
Another distinction is their scope. Corporate Travel Policies may include sections on vendor selection, risk management, and travel data analysis. Such sections do not directly affect employees. An Employee Travel Policy, on the other hand, will only address issues that have an impact on the employees themselves. Issues like allowable costs, booking processes, and duty of care provisions are included.
In essence, a Corporate Travel Policy gives a big picture of how a company handles business travel. On the other hand, an Employee Travel Policy gets into the details, making sure that employees have a clear map to follow. By doing so they can travel for work in an effective and responsible way.
Simple Steps to Create an Employee Travel Policy
There are three easy steps that you might need to take to create an Employee Travel Policy:
1. Create the Classification of Travel.
You have to classify the type of travel for your employee, which specifies the range of distance and time. For example, if an employee travels for less than 15 days, you can call it a “tour” but if it is more than that, you can classify it as a “deputation”, and then rules are applied differently. Or if an employee is shifting on a Project Basis, you can categorize it as a “transfer”. It’s up to you how you want to categorize the travel of your employees.
2. Creating the Spending Limits and Approval System
You have specified the limitations. For example, you can set rules that only senior-level employees are permitted to have business-class seats on a flight. You also have to put the approval system in place.
With platforms like TaxiVaxi, with web and mobile access, it’s quite easy for you to setup the spending limits and approval system.
3. Conditions for when an employee breaks the policy
Penalties should be specified for such scenarios. Also, make sure Employees are aware of the updates to the policy by continuously signing them on the updated copies. Or conducting a travel policy FAQ page on the website is another. Both options can help ensure that employees understand and comply with the travel policy.
How Can TaxiVaxi Help Implement and Manage Your Employee Travel Policy?
Formulating an Employee Travel Policy is only the beginning. Implementing it effectively and ensuring compliance can be a far more challenging task. This is where TaxiVaxi comes in.
- Implementation of Policy: TaxiVaxi’s advanced platform can be tailored to fit the specific rules and guidelines of your Employee Travel Policy. TaxiVaxi makes sure that your policy parameters are seamlessly integrated into the booking process. For example, you can set spending limits and choose which types of travel are allowed for which employees.
- Policy Adherence: Our system is designed to flag bookings that are not in compliance with your policy, providing an immediate alert to the traveler from the Dedicated Relations Managers. This proactive approach ensures policy breaches are minimized and compliance is improved.
- Optimization and Adaptability: As your business evolves, so might your travel needs. TaxiVaxi’s technology allows for easy updating and modification of your travel policy parameters. We also provide detailed reporting and analytics to help you track travel spend, identify trends, and optimize your policy for maximum efficiency and cost savings.
- End-to-End Travel Management: Beyond policy management, TaxiVaxi offers complete corporate travel management services, from booking flights and accommodations to arranging cab services, all within the framework of your travel policy.
By partnering with TaxiVaxi, your company can not only set up a good Employee Travel policy but also make sure it is always updated and improved to meet the changing needs of your company. TaxiVaxi makes business travel easier and gives you peace of mind that your employees are following your policies, budget, and expectations.
In conclusion, a well-structured Employee Travel Policy is more than just a document; it’s a crucial tool for simplifying your business travel process, reducing costs, and protecting and delighting your staff members. It may seem overwhelming to create and implement such a policy, but you don’t have to do it alone. TaxiVaxi is a leading provider of business travel policy development and management services. We use our knowledge and tools to assist you in making business travel an asset rather than a liability. Get in touch with TaxiVaxi now, and we’ll help you organize your business trips more efficiently.