There is a plethora of articles around Duty of Care, but for me the most fundamental statement is that of Tony Ridley – CEO of Intelligent Travel, as stated in his June 2014 report – “The Top 3 items overlooked in Corporate Travel Risk Assessment and Management policies are the policies themselves.” (Intelligent Travel, 2014)
This may sound like a profound and slightly ambiguous statement, however, he goes on to state that the problem in the policies lie within the coverage being of a generic form. I completely agree with him in that the policy most often times assumes that the traveller and every journey they partake, are materially the same and as such can be addressed in one single policy.
Policies do not segment and separate first time travellers, versus frequent travellers, neither does it specify for various ethnic groups, genders and perhaps travellers with special needs. Policies are drafted based on convenience, Tony goes on to state that if Policies were drafted viewing travelling employees as an individual asset, then policies would very well include variations.
Looking into this in more detail most countries are categorised generally in a low, medium and high risk category, however, a first time traveller travelling to a low risk country could be at risk based on their naivety of travelling, equally so, a frequent traveller to a high risk country could be less at risk based on their savvy with regards to business travel.
The feeling then is that companies should rather spend more time apportioning risk and support to those more at risk, by profiling the travellers better, offering training and mostly ensuring adequate support is at hand in the event of an emergency. After all, it is the company’s Duty of Care towards their employees, to ensure that every precaution has been taken to ensure their safety. – Shirley Le Roux MD TraveluXion.