The British Standards Institution, the body that seeks to promote international standards of excellence across sectors, has published a guide for companies wanting to ensure the safety of their travellers.
The new code of practice is named Travelling for work – Responsibilities of an organisation for health, safety and security. It cites research by Ipsos Global showing that up to one in three of all business travel trips may be to locations with a higher medical or security risk than the UK.
So, how can you keep your business travellers as safe as possible? Here’s our at-a-glance summary of the key British Standards advice:
Have a clear travel policy
The guidelines remind organisations that a health and security policy should be clearly documented. Make sure your guide is available to all and updated regularly.
Not sure whether you need a more mandated travel policy? Our debate on mandated and non-mandated travel policies might help you decide what works best for you.
Evaluate the safety risks of each destination
You should make sure you are clear about your employees’ travel destination and route. In addition, be sure to log full details of your employees’ transportation and itinerary.
The guidelines also recommend having an understanding of traveller profiles. Does your employee have special needs that need to be catered for? If so, you should discuss these with your travel management company.
Pre-plan emergency arrangements
A set of emergency arrangements should be in place, in case of an incident. So, consider whether there is a 24/7 contact for employees working away, who can offer help and assistance quickly.
This could include a contact at your travel management company, and a contact who should be notified at your own organisation, should anything happen.
Use approved hotels and accommodation
As well as guaranteeing high standards and the most cost-effective solutions for business travellers, your travel management company can offer you guidance on accommodation with good security measures. Therefore ask for advice on travelling safely if you have any concerns about a destination.
Opt for recommended transport providers
The British Standards Institution reminds travellers that it is important to stick to approved transport providers for your business trips. This is particularly important in countries where potential security risks have been identified.
Add a healthcare plan
Ensure your travellers have the local knowledge they need to protect their safety. You should provide emergency telephone numbers, health insurance and a list of approved medical centres. You could also build a standard medical advice plan into your travel policy for all employees.
What are individual travellers most worried about? This recent survey sheds the light on our biggest travelling fears.