The moral and legal responsibility of a company on the duty of care does not limit within their home or office of work. It must be able to give them protection irrespective of where they travel for business. For the corporate traveller, the duty of care offers them protection and confidence even if they are landing in a strange city, and the feeling of their company being there to back them in case of any emergency alleviates stress to a great extent. When an employee is sent on a business trip, many things can potentially go wrong. The employer needs to be vigilant and to be prepared for whatever happens. Some problems that corporate travellers face frequently are missing flights, misplacing important documents, illness, and accidents that require medical attention, etc.
The concept of duty of care and risk management in business travel is often misunderstood and sometimes regarded as synonyms. But in reality, these two are related but have a different definition. Duty of care as mentioned is the obligation a company owes to the safety, security, and wellbeing of its employees while they travel for work. In order to fulfil the duty of care, a company must undergo a large number of processes and tactics. Travel risk management is one such tactic or strategy. The risk management process is the means by which the company will uphold its ‘duty of care’. In other words, you can fulfil some of major your duty of care aspects through implementing travel risk management procedures.
Post-Covid: Additional Responsibilities
Covid -19 outbreak is regarded as one of the deadliest pandemics in the first half of the 21st century. The impact of this pandemic on business travel is massive and forced travellers around the world grounded from March 2020. Many individuals are self-selecting themselves out of the skies due to concerns over health risks and potential exposure to the virus, and many employers calling time on business travel in order to keep their employees safe. With the growing concern for the safety of their employees, companies have been voluntarily making alterations in the duty of care.
After the newly introduced vaccines, the situation seems to be getting back to the good old days of locomotion sooner. When we take the case of other historic pandemics, everything had returned to normal eventually and no pandemic had stayed forever. Now companies have started planning and thinking about how they can protect their employees in a post-Covid world. The duty of care could see some additional responsibilities in the coming years.
- Companies will need to properly monitor the infection rates by geography and where they can safely allow employees to travel.
- Must consider private transfer options as opposed to mass transit.
- May need to favour certain travel providers, airlines and hotel which follow better and strict controls.
- Entertainment activities will have to be cut down including dining out and activities including large gatherings.
- Evacuation and medical assistance teams should be up for the employees on travel round the clock.
- Should pay attention to travel tracking and alert systems provided by the company.
Check out this video which shows Pinpoint our preferred Traveller Tracking Tool.
If you want to know more about your Duty of Care and how we can assist please get in touch