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There’s an important cultural dimension companies should consider for Open Bookings. Do we have (or do we want to encourage) an empowerment culture? One where we expect employees to take initiative within a framework of corporate principles. For such cultures enabling Open Bookings is a natural choice. To manage the travel budget in such environments a “trust but verify” approach can give the best of both worlds. Travelers are given the choice, they can take initiative. The travel manager can leverage the ever more sophisticated analytic capabilities available (often as on demand cloud based services) to identify the specific travelers that abuse the privilege.
In our experiences analyzing travel transactions with Insights On Demand there’s very much a Pareto principle at work. The vast majority of transactions comply with company policies and budgetary goals, regardless of how the transactions were executed. A small percentage of the transactions have issues and those transactions largely come from an even smaller percentage of the travelers. By using analytics to identify these travelers we can provide the feedback to influence their behavior (and revoke their Open Travel privileges if necessary). Using analytics to “trust but verify” employees can be empowered and the goals of travel management can be achieved.