As a meeting planner I am always amazed at how many of my client’s employees book business travel outside of their corporate system. There are many reasons why they don’t. They get better deals elsewhere, they want the miles, they want better times, they like thinking that they are better at travel than anyone else… the list goes on and on. Everyone has a story, everyone has an excuse.
When people color outside of the lines, the meeting and event planner is the one to feel the pain because now we are chasing data we need for our program to be successful, especially when that program requires the event be responsible for the attendee from end to end. We are now hunting for airline info, arrival info, departure info, and in some extreme cases, even hotel stay info. Crazy? Yes. Happens often? More often than you would think.
I once worked a program where a Doctor booked outside of the travel program and never sent anyone his information… even after multiple emails and phone calls. So, this doctor gets to the event and was screaming at the poor registration desk people that no one picked him up… Demanded to know why everyone else had a ride and he had to take a cab. Well, not wanting the registration desk folks to have to deal with this load of &^%$%$, the client and I jumped in to calmly explain to him that he was his own worst enemy in this situation. When he got snitty with the client, she had to show him the email back-ups that included the emails sent to the doctor and her internal communications with higher ups that said if he did not respond, he was on his own and could stuff it…. Awkward and totally unnecessary.
The dude shoulda just booked through channels.
This infographic from Badgeville is about using gamification to bring everyone into the fold so that they start using the in-house travel options. Gamification, when combined with improved processes are a good way to make the in-house option more appealing… which can make a meeting planners life a little easier.