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Powering the complex, growing, and exhilarating Asian corporate travel market

Frederic Saunier

Head of Corporate IT, Asia Pacific, Amadeus IT Group

We only have only so many minutes in the day, days in the week, and weeks in the year. Most of us would rather put some of that time to our leisure pursuits than to our jobs, yet we are increasingly expected to hit our targets, deliver projects and travel extensively. So it stands to reason that the corporate employee makes an exceptionally demanding traveller. At the same time they are becoming increasingly powerful.

business woman in the cab

 

On the flipside of the conversation, corporate employers are focused on responsibility. Battening down the hatches, enforcing travel policy, reducing travel costs and improving duty of care, each of which has the potential to be at odds with the demands of the empowered corporate traveller. It doesn’t have to be this way. Presenting the game changer in Asia:Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense.

Asia is the world’s largest market for corporate travel and it’s only getting bigger. But despite the explosion of travel and technology in this part of the world, online travel and expense adoption rates are abysmal – or as I see it, a huge opportunity. So it’s with some anticipation that we launched Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense in Singapore recently.

Wherever you look in this part of the world people have their heads buried in their mobile phones, trying to extract value - whether its work, games or social capital – from their daily lives. That’s why it’s critical for this part of the world that cytric has a mobile-first approach, with every part of the process from approval to travel and expense can be managed from the palm of the traveller’s hand.

The second element is content. How can you expect a corporate traveller to adopt your online booking tool and to book in policy if you don’t give them the airlines, hotels and services they need? Yes, as the travel distribution leader Amadeus already brings a wealth of content, but the game changer is the ability for corporations to add their preferred external providers, including peer-to-peer accommodation and destination content. And voila, suddenly the unmanaged comes under control: compliant and as per policy.

Finally it’s about agility. Anyone with a smart phone is used to a regular drumbeat of updates every few weeks as developers tweak and perfect their apps. We now take the same approach, staying innovative by releasing small changes that make a difference every six weeks or so. Is it enough?

You could argue that the Asian sense of traditional customer service and hospitality demands a human touch and online booking tools will never gain traction. I contend that technology is enabling more personal experiences.

The 35 corporations who joined us for our Singapore launch echoed this sentiment and made it clear that they were ready for change. So yes, I am pitching my flag in the ground. By taking the approach of mobility, content and agility I know that we will soon be powering the complex, growing and exhilarating Asian corporate travel market withAmadeus cytric Travel & Expense .

Watch this space: exponential change starts here.


Tags

Traveler Experience, Asia Pacific, Multimodal Travel