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The State of Expense Data Management and Consolidation in the Business Travel Industry (Select Pages)


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This study, sponsored by Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT), provides rich insights into how travel managers currently manage the various data streams they receive with travel expense data, their pain points, and how they would like to improve their process.

The full report is available for purchase for non-members and at no cost for GBTA members. To learn more about the Global Business Travel Association please visit

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The State of Expense Data Management and Consolidation in the Business Travel Industry (Select Pages)

  1. 1. Copyright 2012 GBTA Foundation. All rights reserved. The State of Expense Data Management  and Consolidation in the Business Travel  Industry    A Survey of Corporate Travel Managers    May 25, 2012    Published by:            Sponsored by:            Presented by:   Rockbridge Associates, Inc.   
  2. 2. Copyright 2012 GBTA Foundation. All rights reserved. 5 Meeting Business Goals Using Travel Data Travel managers look to their travel data to address many interrelated goals:  Control travel spend  Increase compliance with policies  Negotiate with travel suppliers  Report to upper management  Identify fraud  Manage risk Their success in achieving these goals varies, as well as the importance of each goal to them and their organization. Figure 1 plots travel managers’ relative success in achieving each goal (horizontal axis) by the relative importance of the goal (vertical axis). Some success. The upper right quadrant represents business goals that are strengths, or goals that are important and travel managers are successful in achieving them. For instance, travel managers perform well in addressing specific questions that management has about travel behaviors and spending, and this is an important task for them. They are able to effectively manage and negotiate with preferred suppliers, which is critical as well. In addition, they successfully manage risk and traveler safety using their travel data by being able to pinpoint individual travelers’ destinations and accommodations in case of significant events. Figure 1
  3. 3. Copyright 2012 GBTA Foundation. All rights reserved. 11 “We have enough data to make informed decisions, but we are not always 100% confident in the accuracy of the data.” – Travel manager who rated satisfaction a “7” Satisfaction with Travel Data There is much room to improve travel managers’ feelings about travel data and the process of managing it. Only one-third of travel managers are “very satisfied” with their travel data, while the remaining majority are moderately satisfied (see Figure 8). Figure 8 Data accuracy and reporting issues. Travel data meets the needs of a small minority of travel managers. They believe it is accurate (10%), and they have the data they need (8%) (see Figure 9). But more often, travel managers are not convinced their travel data is accurate (23%), the reports they receive from their data vendors are not easy to understand (20%), reporting takes too long (19%), and they would like their data consolidated into a single system (14%). Figure 9