A recent survey shows the next generation of business traveller is bringing with it a new set of expectations and values, which in turn is reshaping the corporate travel industry.
A poll of 2,900 travellers carried out in June 2018 by corporate travel management platform Tripactions found that 90 per cent of Millennials see travel as a perk of their job. Additionally, 39 per cent said they wouldn’t take a job that didn’t allow them to take work trips and 80 per cent felt more excited about their role after travelling.
As Millennial and Generation Z employees become more prevalent in the workforce, Tripactions says its research shows they’re bringing a new set of demands into corporate travel programmes – 36 per cent seek ‘unique’ experiences by staying at boutique hotels or Airbnb-type accommodation.
Furthermore, loyalty schemes are falling out of favour with the younger generations, with 21 per cent saying they don’t belong to any programmes and are less interested in them in general. When they do join schemes, they prefer instant gratification such as upgrades rather than saving points over time.
Technology is also becoming more important, with Tripactions saying the majority of respondents are mobile-focused and expect a similar experience across devices offered by the consumer sites they use for their own travel booking.
Overall, 91 per cent of respondents across all age groups said face-to-face meetings are essential when it comes to closing a deal. A resounding 67 per cent believe it is harder to build meaningful business relationships using video conferencing tools.
Those polled said the booking experience is still a pain point for them, with half admitting they don’t use the corporate solutions provided by their company. The biggest frustration proved to be a lack of inventory and the time it takes to use these tools – 83 per cent said they spend more than an hour booking a trip.
Finally, a shocking 64 per cent of respondents said they feel like they have to fend for themselves when something goes wrong and only 8 per cent reported that their travel agent proactively contacts them when plans unexpectedly change.
Tripactions said: “Business travellers are evolving and the business travel tools and policies we provide them with need to evolve as well in order to keep up. A new generation of travellers accustomed to the seamless experiences provided by consumer travel sites and apps are demanding this same convenience, choice and flexibility from their business travel tools. And companies are embracing more dynamic business travel policies and solutions that improve employee adoption rates by offering more personalised experiences and better support on the road, which saves both time and money for the company.”