Expense Reduction Analysts takes the emotion out and puts the effort in to deliver sustainable corporate travel savings.

Ruth Cohen interviews Rowan Evans, one of Expense Reduction Analysts’ travel specialists. Rowan has a successful background in FMCG with many major blue-chip multinational organisations. He has travelled extensively, domestically and internationally, for both business and leisure purposes and has now accumulated more than 40 years of practical experience in corporate management. Rowan has vast knowledge and expertise in the areas of negotiation, consultancy and procurement. For the past 14 years, he has been assisting companies of all shapes and sizes across various industries to better control their expenditure on corporate travel while having regard for traveller comfort, staff safety and most importantly, the improvement of their bottom line results.

Why is it better for Expense Reduction Analysts to carry out a client’s travel category review than their internal people?

As travel is a uniquely personal experience, some organisations may allow employee emotions to override sound logic and sensible business thinking which can adversely influence decision-making. These emotional factors invariably increase expenditure and erode bottom line profitability. We provide companies with the opportunity to undergo a completely independent and honest appraisal of their current travel policy and practices without being inhibited by the internal emotions or the prevailing political environment.

What if the client does not have a travel policy, it’s out of date or somewhat ineffective?

That is not unusual and not a problem at all. We will create an appropriate travel policy to suit the needs of the client’s individual business or alternatively, enhance an existing policy to bring it up to standard with the best in the breed. Having been exposed to numerous companies for more than 25 years, Expense Reduction Analysts has gathered travel policy intelligence from around the globe which is passed on to our clients to form a contemporary, specialised document.

What elements of corporate travel expenditure do Expense Reduction Analysts review?

We undertake a full-service travel category review which incorporates domestic, Trans-Tasman and international airfares, hotel and apartment accommodation, car rental and travel management company (TMC) transaction fees.

What if an organisation does not currently utilise a TMC?

This scenario is common, however, not ideal for companies attempting to deliver sound corporate governance. We will prepare a request for proposal (RFP) to take the client’s business travel expenditure to market in order to obtain offers from well qualified and reputable TMCs who will facilitate travel bookings, provide appropriate visibility along with robust control mechanisms in order to achieve policy compliance.

What if an organisation has a long and healthy relationship with its TMC?

Then there is absolutely no necessity to sever that strong relationship as Expense Reduction Analysts is more than happy to work with any incumbent TMC to achieve the desired outcomes and generate tangible and sustainable savings to clients.

Do Expense Reduction Analysts negotiate deals with travel suppliers?

Yes, most definitely. Where business volumes and values permit, we will actively pursue airline carrier route deals and discounts, corporate hotel room rate and corporate car rental rate agreements in order to maximise savings.

How do Expense Reduction Analysts generate client savings for corporate travel services?

We utilise more than 20 best practice savings strategies which bring about behavioural and cultural change resulting in improved financial management. Process efficiencies are put in place to facilitate speedy, accurate and policy-compliant booking practices which reduce overall expenditure.

How do Expense Reduction Analysts measure the client savings benefits?

We conduct quarterly audits which compare the current rates, fares and fees with those of historical periods to calculate the savings. Exception reporting highlights any areas that require remedial action and realignment with acceptable agreed standards and the enhanced travel policy.

Are there any other travel-related services provided by Expense Reduction Analysts?

Yes, we constantly monitor the travel market via multiple sources in order to communicate to clients the latest industry news, events, hints, tips and technology updates.

What level of corporate travel expenditure do Expense Reduction Analysts review?

It’s a pretty broad band really. Any business spending in the range from $250k to $5m per annum on corporate travel can benefit from our cost management expertise.