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BBT March/April 2019 cover
March/April 2019

Buyers urged to adapt risk policies to fit ‘modern day’ travel

Security eye

Businesses are not doing enough to ensure their travel risk strategies are fit for “modern-day” business travel, according to a report published by risk management firm Airmic and International SOS.

The report notes that business travel has grown by 25 per cent over the past decade, with businesses sending employees to a wider range of territories including high or extreme risk regions.
In addition it adds that the nature of terrorism has changed such that low-risk destinations can become high-risk in a “matter of hours”.

According to the report, insurance – while important – is not a sufficient mitigation strategy, especially in today’s “fluid and complex geopolitical environment”. It urges businesses to gain reliable sources of relevant intelligence and flexible and pre-rehearsed plans in place to ensure a “quick and proportionate response” to any crisis impacting its people.

“Sadly every week we are currently reminded why having an effective travel risk management framework in place is imperative. As the tragic events in Westminster, Manchester and more recently on London Bridge and Borough Market demonstrate, any destination can become high risk at an intense speed,” said Julia Graham, Airmic’s deputy CEO and technical director.

She added: “I urge all risk professionals to review, update and rehearse how they would respond should such an incident impact their organisation. Knowing where your people are and how you can communicate with each other in the event of a crisis is especially important.”

The Travel Risk Management report also states there is a greater diversity of people undertaking business travel. Organisations therefore need to risk profile each travel destination in view of their own policies for diversity and inclusion.

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