The market of business travel in Italy is growing again in 2021 and reaches 8.8 billion euros (+ 15% compared to 2020). After the collapse of the previous year, business travel is increased also in the number: 15,298, + 12% compared to 13,610 in 2020. Travel in the tertiary sector grew by + 14% (11 million trips), almost double that of industry (about 4 million, + 8% on the 2020). 98% of Italian companies have started a process of digitalization of bt management: payment remains the most involved activity, with 86% of companies using electronic tools to complete the purchase.
In a nutshell, these are the hot topics that emerged fromBusiness Travel Observatory of the School of Management of the Politecnico di Milano and of the UniBo Center for Advanced Studies on Tourism.
In light of the new company priorities
“From a quantitative point of view, considering that an increase of + 75% would have been needed to recover half of what was lost in 2020, it is clear that there is still no sign of a rapid return to the standards we were used to – he explains Andrea Guizzardi, director of the Business Travel Observatory and director of the Center for Advanced Studies in Tourism – Cast – of the University of Bologna. “2022 should close with spending just under 11 billion euros, a -47% compared to pre-pandemic levels. In the meantime, however, above all, trips motivated by inter-company meetings are growing (+ 17%), a sign of the desire to meet again in person. However, the “small” size of the increase indicates that the use of technologies for distance communication continues to be significant “.
However, it is under the profile qualitative that the Observatory highlighted the effect of the pandemic on corporate travel with new corporate priorities that increase the level of “professional skills” required of travel managers.
“If before the pandemic – continues the teacher – the main activity of the company travel offices revolved around travel – for example agreements with suppliers or cost and time optimization -, now the focus is also on the traveler, his safety and in general the duty of care. For intellectual honesty, I must say that the Observatory has for years noted the attention of travel managers to the well-being of the traveler. The news is that, in full pandemic, the thing it also affects companies and therefore becomes a skill that can be exploited in professional growth, as long as it can be measured “.
A course to learn how to measure new goals
In this new context, it is essential for the travel manager and for companies to also reflect on how measure the results in an objective and comparable way in time and space. And in an environment that is increasingly digital (and complex), the synthesis and the statistical analysis of travel data becomes the key to designing, and sharing with the management, new KPIs. The best eyewear to look at corporate travel, capturing the strengths and weaknesses of strategies in terms of savings, reengineering and continuous improvement.
New professional skills for a new way of traveling for business, therefore. With business trips conditioned by the pandemic chessboard, by the regulations of individual countries, by the availability of seats and accommodation and with policy “all to be rewritten”never before have travel managers had so many numbers available that can objectively represent what is happening in real time.
This is why the ongoing formation course of theUniversity of Bologna “Data Analysis and Reporting for Business Travel Intelligence”, Which, having reached the tenth editionemphasizes the centrality of data analysis.
Tra decision maker and networking
“For several years – he says Silvia Verzini travel manager consultant and course communication manager – I work alongside companies in travel process reorganization projects and I often find the need to intervene in the management of expense data. Generally, companies are aware of how much they spend on travel – in their budgets these costs are among the first items of expenditure -, but they don’t govern the detail of how they spend. From the market channels they receive a large amount of unstructured data and therefore the need arises to systematize the management of this information to make it usable both on the travel side and on the administration side. During the third session of the Data Analyzing course, participants will work around these issues and will be provided with useful information to effectively manage communication and involvement of decision markers company. “
The training appointment – which makes use of the partnership of AirPlus, Bcd Travel and Zucchetti, of the collaboration of Gbta and finds the media partner in Guida Viaggi – is held in person in Bologna (but with the possibility of participating remotely), over three sessions on a monthly basis from March to June. The sessions, structured with full immersion in the classroom followed by activities outside the classroom, are aimed at consolidating, in addition to skills, the team spirit among the participants. The networking among “students” has always proved to be decisive both in the success of the course and in the continuation of working life, so much so that some former students will be available for senior tutoring support.
L’registration for the course must be completed by Wednesday 16 February on the website of the University of Bologna.