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The recent article “How to Make Expense Reports Cool” in Fortune Magazine highlighted insights from the Concur CEO Steve Singh on the future of travel. One thing that really resonated with us is how automation is a powerful way to make the travel transactions if not cool, at least easier. Many of the headaches in the process come from the effort to control budgets and prevent abuse.
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 if the transaction was executed via a Travel Management Organization or via common consumer tools (known in the industry as Open Bookings). 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” we can reduce the travel headaches (and increase the coolness by letting travelers use the tools of their choice) and while meeting the goals of cost management and reduced abuse.
And, thanks to Concur’s API this style analysis can be automatically delivered to the travel manager – another step towards coolness.