Travel buyers rate traveller satisfaction as one of the top priorities when developing their programme, but new research shows that the data used to evaluate the holistic experience remain misunderstood and, as a result, underutilised.

A study entitled “Quality management in business travel 2.0”, published by ACTE in collaboration with BCD Travel, found 91 per cent of buyers use spend and savings data to inform their travel programmes. Eighty-four per cent track booking statistics.

However, respondents said they want a more holistic view of their programmes, with 52 per cent agreeing that measuring factors such as trip success and traveller friction can help their company better understand their travellers’ needs. Forty-seven per cent said it can also aid in improving services and 37 per cent said it can boost compliance.

When asked about the barriers they face in trying to improve quality measurement, many buyers suggested a lack of reliable data is a key obstacle. Almost two-thirds (62 per cent) said that many important metrics are difficult to quantify accurately. They added that available data can be fragmented (29 per cent) and unreliable (21 per cent).

As a result, travel buyers said they are left to draw conclusions from incomplete data sets, creating a greater margin of error when implementing changes to the programme.

When it comes to measurements such as trip success, many respondents rely on self-reported traveller feedback. However, they agreed that this method is unreliable, with 40 per cent saying it can be misleading and 33 per cent saying they tend to receive a low response rate to requests for feedback.

Leigh Bochicchio, executive director of ACTE, commented: “This study creates a unique opportunity for the industry to come together and transform the way we measure the quality of travel programmes. Creating a well-framed rubric for gathering objective and subjective data will provide a more balanced view of the value and success of a corporate travel programme – and the corporate travel manager.”

Download a full copy of the report here;

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