Your organization established a corporate travel program to get more control of employee-initiated spend. As a travel manager, you can now provide an easy-to-use booking tool that displays the selection of air travel and hotel vendors in order of corporate-policy preference, based on the terms and rates you and your procurement team negotiated with airlines and hotel reservation programs. As a controller, you now have an automated system that matches financial institutions’ credit card feeds to smartphone-scanned receipt images uploaded by your employees, providing you more timely visibility into spending against budget.
In addition to the obvious financial benefits, there are more subtle rewards brought about by the digital transformation you have embarked on. As a director of HR, you can now showcase your firm as a leader in employee experience, providing T&E automation tools that eliminate tedious tasks, enable employees to be more productive, and, as a result, increase employee retention. Your travel and expense data can also help to track and assist employees during emergencies, by rapidly indicating to your HR and security personnel where in the world traveling employees are located.
Yet if your organization focuses on automation only as a means to cut costs, improve employee satisfaction, and ensure safety in your travel program, you’re missing a key benefit that will have a huge impact on the way you do business going forward: sustainability.
Adapting business travel to a low-carbon world
Many companies, such as the airline giant IAG, are shifting their priorities to focus corporate goals on sustainability, and more recently, environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG). Like IAG, SAP has also realized the value in focusing on ESG. Since 2014, SAP has used 100% green electricity for all data centers, buildings, and e-car charging stations, and also puts an internal price on carbon for business flights. And these efforts aren’t going unnoticed. According to NPower, one of Britain’s leading energy companies, a quarter of the world’s professionally managed investment funds now only invest in companies that demonstrate solid ESG credentials.
If your organization is looking for ways to promote your green values, going beyond automation to provide transparency in business travel is a great place to start. Consider adopting a travel booking system that provides information on flight emissions for each flight segment and opt to promote suppliers with sustainable practices.
For SAP Concur customers, expanding your travel program to include sustainability best practices is made easy. SAP Concur and SAP Concur App Center partners such as Scope 5, Lyft, and auto rental companies can help track emissions from business travel, assist the sustainability-conscious traveler in the selection of flight or train-routes based on carbon emissions, include hybrid options in car-rental selections, and provide carbon-neutral rides. Plus, customers can run reports to see the travel categories where carbon emissions are the highest and educate their employees on ways they can reduce their footprint.
Every action we undertake to reduce our negative impact on the environment helps a company’s standing in their environmental, social and corporate governance goals. Using your existing travel program to achieve goals beyond automation can have a direct impact on new business challenges – challenges that were unbeknown to most at the time when the travel program was initially implemented.
For more information on how SAP Concur can help your organization’s sustainability efforts, please contact your local SAP Concur sales office.