Doing Data Right

Getting the right information and managing it well is key to an effective travel program – but it takes a village
Any sentence that contains the phrase “data management” is more than a little scary for many corporate travel buyers. What’s more, “data management” just doesn’t sound like that much fun. But unfortunately these days, not being savvy about data management – or more specifically, how to do it well – isn’t really an option.

Travel managers are often faced with the unenviable choices of data that is 1) inconsistent: “Are those dollars being spent on hotel, lodging, accommodations, or all three?” 2) potentially inaccurate: “The negotiated rate was X, so why did we spend Y?” Or 3) stale: “Yeah, that happened. Sorry, too late.”

The alternative is much more appealing – and it’s not just a fantasy anymore. Thanks to advances in technology, there are now many data-oriented companies eager to help travel managers do their jobs better. As Tony D’Astolfo, senior vice president, North America at Serko, puts it, these are partners who will say, “‘let me pull all your data into one place. Let me normalize it for you. Let me clean it for you and then let me present it to you.’”

Whether this help comes from a third-party data aggregator or a data-savvy TMC, the result is clear, complete and actionable (i.e., timely) information about travelers’ behavior – a key ingredient of any successful managed travel program. And a tech-forward mindset is all you need to get started.

Data Management

Categories: Special ReportData Management

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