The employer/employee relationship places responsibilities on both parties. You, as the employer, provide direction and supervision to an employee who is expected to comply with your requests and processes. Because your employees are operating under your order, you assume responsibility for their welfare. This is what is known as duty of care.
It is one thing to assume the duty of care when an employee is under immediate, physical supervision in your workplace. It is quite another when the employee is on the road. Corporate travel risk management processes can help you exercise a duty of care and keep your workers safe.
Ways to Care for Traveling Employees
Talk with your company’s attorney or legal department about ways to develop a duty of care travel policy and provide for the safety of traveling workers. The right travel safety policies for your company depend on the nature of your business, frequent employee destinations, modes of transportation, and, in some cases, the length of employee trips. These variables impact worker safety, which means they have to be considered when understanding risks and developing protocols.
Here are some points for discussion and consideration:
Establish travel policies: Your duty of care begins with incorporating corporate travel risk management strategies into your company’s travel policies. Employees should be aware of these policies and comply with them. For example, you may request that all employees notify their supervisor if they experience travel delays, check-in once they’ve reached their destination, and report safe arrival back home at the end of a trip. CLC’s Traveler Tracker allows you to map the location of your employee reservations so that you can coordinate assistance in case of an emergency.
Consider the unexpected: Optimism is a wonderful thing, but your duty of care means that you must consider things that could go wrong during a trip. From missed flights to natural disasters, many things can go wrong when traveling. Understanding what they are and providing ways of mitigating or effectively responding to these risks can help keep your workers safe.
Pre-plan travel: Planning trips in advance allows your team to consider possible risks while establishing a safe itinerary. For example, before sending an employee to an unfamiliar city, make sure that the worker is booked into a hotel that is in a safe area.
Offer 24/7 support: Employees should not have to face uncertainty while traveling. Corporate travel management services, like CLC Lodging, can offer 24/7 assistance to your workers in case of disrupted plans.
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