• FlightChats: Travel Context Matters to Travel Management Companies (TMCs)

    1,351 views 1 year ago
    Meara: Hi there, welcome again to FlightChats. I’m Meara.

    Robyn: And I'm Robyn.

    Meara: And we're going to be talking today about the companies that support corporate travel: the Travel Management Companies. Historically, Travel Management Companies focus a lot on that booking and ticketing phase. They also do a huge amount of the reporting and post-trip analysis. However, during the day-of-travel and during active travel it gets a little more spotty.

    Robyn: Well, I mean they definitely there to provide all kinds of support services to travelers, should they need it and decide to call in for some of those services.

    Meara: I actually often think of them like the NASA scientists in Apollo 13. When they went behind the moon and they're all they're going, “Please don't let anything go wrong!” because all they can do is wait. And if the phone rings they're going to be there to support you, but they have no lead time and it's getting tougher.

    Robyn: But that's changing and we're seeing that with a lot of our customers as well. That's where the value of understanding the context of, let’s just say a flight delay, comes into play and can really help them become more proactive in offering these services to travelers. For example, context is about getting the right piece of information to the right person at the right time. And in the case of a TMC that's providing these services to travelers, a 10-minute delay, which is the piece of information that might have changed but affects every single passenger potentially different, and so in the case of taking trip context into account you can identify those customers that might be impacted with a misconnect resulting from that 10-minute delay. What that does is it allows that TMC to identify the high priority issues that are affecting their travelers or could significantly impact the flow of that passengers travel.

    Meara: It’s a total differentiator.

    Robyn: Absolutely, to get that proactive phone call saying, “Hey, we understand that you're going to misconnect. Don't worry. We've already booked you on the next flight” and so as soon as you land to get that voicemail or you get that email or that text from your agent. That really is a big service differentiator.

    Meara: Yeah, it makes the difference between traveling as a managed traveler or traveling as an unmanaged traveler.

    Robyn: Somebody’s got your back your back. And not only that, but context also comes into play in offering those types of services affordably. You know, if you’re managing that 10-minute delay, then you don't want to send notifications on every single change affecting all of your travelers all the time. You're having to mentally process all of those changes and having to figure out which ones to pay attention to. Just like travelers, you want to keep all that noise aside. You want to be able focus on just those issues requiring your assistance or think about how you could offer an elevated level of service to your VIP travelers. So again, taking that context of the trip into account these TMCd can offer higher level of customer service at a far more affordable price.

    Meara: Absolutely. And the other thing is, once you can monitor it and you can manage it, then the very next thing to think about is how you measure the effect of that intervention or knowledge about the trip. And we will get into that during our next FlightChat. We'll be talking about reporting and understanding what information you need in order to keep track of and improve trips that are coming in the future based on what you've experienced in the past.

    Robyn: It’s going to be good.

    Meara: Do everything better. So stick with us. Thanks for listening and we look forward to seeing you again during our next FlightChat.

    Stay tuned for more as we roll out this series in the coming weeks. Remember to follow us on social media and subscribe to our channel so you never miss a moment of FlightChats.





    Music: Severe Tire Damage Kevin MacLeod (http://incompetech.com)
    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

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