Adapting Business Travel Policies for Remote and Hybrid Work Environments

James Dent
James Dent
Last Updated: 12 February 2024

The transition to remote and hybrid working models has prompted organisations to reassess their business travel policies to meet the evolving needs of their workforce. Insights from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) highlight the adjustments and challenges faced by companies as they navigate this transformation.

Impact on Travel Programmes

Nearly half of respondents, according to the GBTA’s Business Travel Outlook Poll, have either revised or intend to revise their company’s travel policies due to the adoption of remote or hybrid working models. This indicates a significant recognition of the impact that new ways of working have on corporate travel programmes.

Economic Considerations

Approximately 27% of respondents note their company’s travel costs have increased to some extent to accommodate remote and hybrid employees. However, a considerable proportion (37%) report no notable change in costs, indicating varying financial implications across different businesses.

Embracing Hybrid Models

A majority (62%) of industry respondents have embraced a hybrid working model, allowing employees to work from both the office and home. Within this context, 27% of companies have already revised their corporate travel policies, with an additional 21% actively working on modifications to align with hybrid working arrangements.

Key Areas of Revision

Companies are focusing on several key areas when revising their travel policies, including:

  • Determining the types of meetings eligible for travel
  • Establishing the frequency of travel to physical office locations
  • Defining permissible modes of transportation
  • Reviewing per diems and reimbursable accommodations for remote or hybrid employees

Future Outlook

Despite the widespread changes underway, 40% of respondents indicate that they currently do not plan to alter their travel programmes concerning remote or hybrid employees. This suggests a divergence in approaches among organisations, with some maintaining existing policies whilst others adopt a more dynamic approach to accommodate evolving work dynamics.

In summary, the shift to remote and hybrid working models necessitates a strategic re-evaluation of business travel policies to support the changing needs of employees. Whilst challenges such as increased costs and policy adjustments exist, companies are leveraging flexibility and proactive planning to optimise travel programmes. As the landscape continues to evolve, adaptability and agility will be crucial for organisations to thrive in this dynamic environment.

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