It’s easy to blink and miss the launch of new tools that can greatly enhance your organisation’s travel strategy...
28 questions to ask in your RFP to secure the best technology for your organisation
The corporate travel industry is moving faster and faster each year and when you add in the day to day to-do list of travel and procurement managers, it’s easy to blink and miss the launch of new tools that can greatly enhance your organisation’s travel strategy.
Although it’s tempting to say “we’ll take the lot” when faced with a prospective TMC's full range of travel technology, it’s well worth using the RFP process to gather as much detail about the functionality of their tools. This will allow you to make informed decisions regarding whether a potential TMC’s travel technology is really right for your organisation and your travellers.
Here’s a selection of questions to consider including in your next travel RFP if finding the right travel technology is a top priority for your organisation right now.
Alternatively, if you’re nowhere near RFP time but are looking to improve the technology that your travellers and bookers have access to, then why not fire a couple of these questions at your TMC and see what they say?
When it comes to selecting an online booking tool (OBT) for your organisation, there’s never been more choice and online booking tools now make up the bread and butter of many a TMC’s offering. However, with so many online booking tools now available, it’s harder to correctly evaluate which will be the right fit for your travellers and your organisation as a whole – this is your chance to find out more about what your potential TMC’s can really offer you in terms of easier booking.
- Please provide details of your online booking portal. Including detail on the software you use to power your platform(s).
- When it comes to implementing new features, please detail timeline for deployment.
- What kind of API’s are supported? How open is your solution?
- Can your technology integrate with our existing, third-party systems?
- Confirm the following trip types which your system supports: one-way, round-trip, multi-segment, open jaw itineraries, and split ticketing?
- Can the self-booking tool display applicable airfare rules and / or our travel policies? Please describe how rules can be displayed more simply.
- What is the maximum number of passengers that can be booked per trip?
- Can the way in which rates are prioritised in the tool (e.g., can market rates or corporate preferred rates be prioritised based on price) be customised? Please describe this process.
- Please describe the benefits and unique features of your online booking technology.
- How can your online booking platforms help our organisation to address compliance? Can you provide results or a case study as evidence of this?
- Do any of your online booking tools utilise AI or offer chatbot facilities?
Data goes hand in hand with corporate travel technology. Whether it’s traveller profiles, journey itineraries, out of policy bookings, average cost or most popular destinations, it’s never been easier to collect data on how your organisation travels, but is it as easy to actually understand it? Find out what your TMC can offer to make this process as easy, yet as enlightening, as possible.
- Are you able to provide bespoke reports? Is there a limit to how many reports can be provided per month/year?
- Can travel data be presented in a dashboard format? Is it possible to customise this dashboard for our organisation?
- Do you offer access to predictive analytics tools? If so, please describe these and the benefits that they offer.
- Is reporting dynamic and available in variable timeframes i.e.: by day, week, month, and/or year, etc?
- Please describe how you would analyse trends and identify opportunities for service improvement, cost savings and efficiencies.
Travel apps are something that we’re all used to using when we jet off on a well-earned break, but are only just starting to offer substantive benefits to corporate travellers. However, there’s a real range in functionality when it comes to corporate travel apps and now’s your chance to scope out whether a prospective TMC’s app would be a nice to have, or an absolute essential.
- Please describe any apps that you offer to travellers
- Does your app offer gate notification and access to travel itineraries?
- Is your app available on iOS and Android?
- Does your tool support travellers using their mobile device to capture a boarding pass and use in place of a printed document?
- How are your apps developed?
- Is there any new functionality to be added to the app within the next 6 months?
Advances in technology mean that traveller tracking tools are becoming more and more common – but not all traveller tracking technology is created equally. A TMC having access to traveller tracking tools will not automatically mean that they’re the right fit for your organisation, so finding out about customisation, current and future capabilities and integration functionality is an essential part of your research.
- Please describe any traveller tracking tools that you provide. How do these work and what do they show?
- Can your traveller tracking tools integrate with third-party tools?
- Is it possible to communicate with travellers through your traveller tracking technology?
Often overlooked, integration can be essential to successful corporate travel programme. Clarifying how any new technology can integrate seamlessly with your existing systems can give you an accurate idea of how much more efficient your processes could become by working with a new TMC, as well as shedding light on how long it will take to implement.
- How compatible is your proprietary and third-party technology with our existing business management systems?
- What would be the benefits of integrating your technology with our existing business management systems?
- Please describe the part of the implementation process that deals with technology integration – how will you support us throughout this?