The evolving landscape of Travel Risk Management

As business travel resumes and organisations emerge from the shadow of the pandemic, the question on everyone’s mind is how best to ensure mobile workforce safety in a radically different world. Organisations understand that to continue business travel post-pandemic, they must incorporate thorough preparation and detailed planning ahead of any future trips. Senior managers may be considering external help to support emerging vulnerabilities and enhance current Travel Risk Management (TRM) policies and internal procedures. Companies may now find that existing TRM programmes are not fit for purpose. Where organisational priorities may have previously been focused on criminality, terrorism and political instability, they now are forced to consider health and wellbeing. There is also a necessity for preparing travellers for the risks and hazards stemming from COVID-19. The pre-trip due diligence must be comprehensive – and is necessary to control the risks and hazards employees are now exposed too.

Personal and Tailored Support

Before even comprehending international travel as a business, individuals must gauge the risk and hazards they are exposing themselves to. Some may not be comfortable travelling. Even experienced travellers will need to consider specialist assistance – including medical, mental health, and enhanced travel support. Businesses will have to adjust their operations to suit their employee’s personal risk criteria. The provision of objective, accurate advice from external specialists, may provide reassurance that makes all the difference. For a list of Journey Management Services click here. 

Assess All Risks and Hazards

Pre-travel risk assessments, an essential process for any travel, should be thorough, current and tailored specifically to the individual and the activities they are conducting. Regional and country-specific assessments should cover all social, economic and political tensions amongst more traditional risk considerations. COVID-19 specific risks and hazards, such as transmission rates, specific entry requirements, local medical capabilities and so forth will now also have to be included. COVID-19 exposes both business and mobile workforce to an array of new risks and hazards which are not just health-related. Companies and individuals need to understand the consequences and impacts such as:

• Failing to comply with local and regional pandemic legislation
• Evading quarantine rules
• Overstretched medical infrastructure
• Travel disruptions, restrictions and logistical challenges
• Fines and litigation

Incident Management, Monitoring and Communications

When the pandemic emerged and travel restrictions started, many organisations were unable to locate employees causing delays in response and repatriation. To ensure clear communication with travellers, and avoid complications should similar events occur, travel monitoring will most likely become commonplace. Incident Management platforms and mobile applications, such as Locate Global, include location-based monitoring, check-in and tracking tools, as well as direct communication lines across multiple channels. On-hand Intelligence on travel restrictions and risks as well as wider medical and security intelligence, can aid travellers themselves should they find themselves in risky situations. Incident Management and communications systems provide employers with instant global visibility and monitoring capability –  enabling travel plans to be adapted according to real-time risks and evolving restrictions.

Third-Party Risk Specialists

As the TRM process becomes more complex, utilising third-party specialists help provides clarity and a professional perspective. Experienced teams can identify specific and changing needs unique to individual organisations. Furthermore, they provide bespoke risk management and assistance solutions to meet these needs. At the core of this is the ability to bring centralisation and streamline processes, ensuring efficiency and automation whilst overseeing the due diligence and ‘Duty of Care’ requirements prior to trips commencing. Travel Risk experts can further support organisations with both proactive and reactive in-country support whilst abroad.

There can be no doubt that global assistance providers bring valuable assistance to corporate entities, shaping their TRM strategy and ensuring employees are safe internationally. Playing a proactive role is fundamental and providers should continue to evolve and adapt their strategies to align with client’s unique tolerances. Click here for a full list of our adaptive Journey Management services. For more travel risk management advice contact us at enquiries@priavosecurity.com or call +44 (0) 20 7315 4221.