How CI Travel Can Help You Maximize Your Government Reimbursable Travel Spend
CI Travel provides clients with precise, detailed data that simplifies reporting and reconciliation. Capture all aspects of your government-reimbursable travel spend.
In January 2012, CI Travel of Virginia and Azumano Travel from the Pacific Northwest combined, opening offices coast-to-coast. Together, they formed a leading national travel management company.
Corporate Travel Management
Travel is one of the most significant expenses on any company’s profit and loss statement, making it an essential element in business operations. To maximize their return on investment, companies need a professionally managed travel program led by an experienced travel management company such as CI Azumano Travel Management Services. They assist organizations in defining their needs and goals before creating tailored travel programs and policies to achieve those objectives. CI Azumano serves businesses, federal agencies, and vacation travelers across America.
Managing corporate travel requires many skills, from ensuring employee safety and budget compliance, accommodating travelers of various kinds, and establishing travel policies to optimizing spending – this is why so many businesses outsource their travel management needs to a TMC to make the most of their investment and decrease risk.
Travel management companies provide additional services that enhance travel-related processes beyond negotiating favorable supplier terms and discounts, including real-time expense status updates, intuitive dashboards and alerts that give travel managers a clear picture of spending trends; providing consolidated itineraries and receipts for easy expense report filing and approval, which reduces interoffice friction over reimbursements and travel costs.
Travel management companies that stand out are distinguished by an expansive network of preferred vendors and industry expertise that allows them to negotiate the best rates with airlines, hotels, and other travel partners – thus saving travelers money. They also specialize in tailoring customized fares to fit all traveler locations or budgets – even working with you directly to develop a negotiated fare program tailored specifically for frequent flyers.
Working with a TMC can save your organization considerable money on flights, hotel accommodations, group bookings, and other arrangements. They can also assist with managing unexpected events like flight delays and cancellations and advise on weather-related safety concerns. Furthermore, TMCs serve as an on-the-road point of contact for your employees in solving problems or answering queries that arise while traveling.
Government Travel Management
CI Travel is the government travel management provider for numerous federal agencies and large public-sector organizations, such as the Department of Defense. We offer comprehensive travel services – everything from booking airfares and hotel rooms, car rentals, meeting space rental arrangements, cruises, and international tours to our experienced travel professionals knowing the requirements and needs of Federal workforce employees. In addition, we possess in-depth knowledge of Government-wide policies such as Federal Travel Regulation (FTR) and any particular travel rules applied by individual agencies.
An employee must submit a travel authorization request to their agency’s Travel Policy Office (TPO) to reserve a reservation. Once received, TPO reviews it to ensure compliance with Federal regulations, setting per diem reimbursement rates, checking mileage reimbursement rates for privately owned vehicles, and determining if a specific itinerary falls within Fly America Act requirements. Furthermore, TPO assists with E-Gov Travel System (ETS) issues such as international escorts, premium class airfares, or foreign flag carrier tickets.
During high-profile threats, public sector entities face similar travel challenges as everyone else; our government travel experts are ready to assist them. We monitor CDC and State Department advisories and will notify you of any changes immediately – working closely with travelers who require alternative options if their destination has become unsafe.
We can handle every aspect of your government travel program, from developing and implementing your travel policy, managing reservations, and ensuring compliance with regulations to providing customized training to travel staff and managers and creating a centralized location to store data for tracking purposes. In addition, CI Travel offers various reports to meet ad-hoc reporting requirements from OMB/GSA or executive offices.
TravelPerk provides your employees with all the travel options they require in one convenient, quality platform, with low fare checking, flight updates, and loyalty point tracking at their fingertips – as well as providing single invoicing that simplifies managing expenses for finance teams. Our industry-leading Travelit mobile app keeps employees connected on the go, while the built-in duty of care solution makes payments simpler to track for finance teams.
Travel Risk Management
Travel risk management refers to efforts taken by an organization to decrease the likelihood of threats occurring and has plans in place should something go amiss. Travel risk management forms part of their duty of care toward traveling employees, which may involve preventative and reactive measures.
A practical travel risk assessment helps reassure business travelers traveling outside the office and gives them confidence to remain safe during their trip. A well-designed risk analysis should cover everything from weather risks and natural disasters to political stability in a destination region and entry/exit requirements, vaccinations, screening and testing, and available medical facilities in their travel destination.
At the same time, it’s essential to recognize that business travelers could still face health or security incidents while abroad, even when traveling according to procedures outlined in their travel risk analysis. Therefore, having a crisis response plan and regularly reviewing it with the travel team is vitally important.
When assessing risk, it’s essential to utilize multiple sources of information, such as the U.S. Department of State, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, International SOS, Brown faculty and staff regional experts, and others. By closely tracking global health, safety, and security events, Brown University can stay abreast of situations that could impact its travelers.
One of the best ways to manage travel risk is through proactive education and training. By teaching traveling employees about potential dangers and what steps they should take if an emergency arises, you can help prevent incidents from ever occurring.
Digital tools and solutions are another great way to elevate travel risk management. Many can automate the delivery of essential entry/exit alerts for travelers, bookers, and managers in an ever-evolving travel landscape, and others even enable traveler tracking capabilities so businesses know exactly where their travelers are at any given moment.
Travel compliance refers to employees adhering to their company’s travel guidelines, an essential aspect of any effective corporate travel policy. Unfortunately, many companies struggle to achieve this goal, with business travelers often not understanding or following company travel policies as intended.
As such, employees must receive proper education on your travel policies and how to follow them. This should occur during initial employee onboarding and ongoing refresher programs for existing workers. It is also recommended that managers, approvers, and other stakeholders are included in this process to ensure everyone is on the same page regarding travel management.
At its core, finding an equilibrium between giving employees freedom and control over their travel arrangements while remaining within budget and preventing non-compliant expense claims requires striking the appropriate balance between liberty and power while remaining cost-effective and compliant with expense claims. Finding that equilibrium may take some time, but technology and strategies like those offered by CWT Travel Management Services may make this more accessible than ever! Our innovative software features make it simple for employees to stay within company guidelines.
Government-reimbursed travel requires incredibly stringent compliance standards, as the penalties for non-compliance can seriously affect your financial health and your organization. As a result, more businesses are now prioritizing travel compliance management as part of their strategic agendas.
Implement policies and procedures consistent with Congressional regulations, utilize a central travel booking engine to simplify program administration, and provide travelers with tools such as low fare alerts, flight updates, loyalty point trackers, and international travel guides; additionally, CI Travel offers their leading travel app Tripit which keeps clients connected while on the move.