Like so many other industries, corporate travel is being shaped by mobile-first millennials—which means companies must adapt to meet their unique habits, or be left behind.
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Millennials have quickly become a consumer group that corporate travel companies can no longer ignore. They now make up the largest generation in the US workforce, according to Pew Research Center analysis of US Census Bureau data, and they’re reshaping overarching trends in the workplace.
In addition to the sheer size of the millennial workforce, this group now takes more business trips than any other generation. A 2016 survey from MMGY Global found that millennials took 7.4 business trips in the past year, compared to 6.4 trips for Gen Xers and 6.3 trips for baby boomers. And many of these younger travelers are eager to increase their travel for business.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, their dependency on mobile is fueling the changes in corporate travel that companies are now grappling with. By not prioritizing mobile experiences, corporate travel companies risk leaving behind this valuable segment of young consumers, who potentially offer decades of loyalty, as well as their older counterparts, who are increasingly booking via mobile.
Millennials have come of age with mobile devices in hand, and they spend more time on smartphone apps than older adults, according to a Q4 2015 study from Nielsen. They’ve become accustomed to performing a growing number of tasks via mobile, from requesting car service, to ordering food, to consuming vast amounts of content, to of course, researching and booking travel.
A study from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) found that millennials are more likely than baby boomers and Gen Xers to have travel reservations, general travel (e.g. itinerary consolidation and destination information), ground transportation, and review apps on their phones. The fact that millennials are turning to mobile for nearly everything they do—including researching and booking travel for their leisure trips—means that increasingly, they expect the platforms they use for their business trips to match the experiences of consumer-facing travel platforms.
Unfortunately, most corporate travel companies are still working on getting their mobile strategy right—many don’t even have one. Another study released by GBTA, along with the Carlson Family Foundation, found that nearly 70 percent of travel managers who responded to survey questions said their travel policies didn’t include a mobile strategy.
However, as Todd Kaiser, Group Lead of Travel and Expense at Deem, a mobile and cloud technology provider for the business travel industry, explains, “those that embrace mobile and focus on offering seamless, on-the-go experiences throughout the travel journey have the opportunity to show travelers the value of their corporate travel program.”
By offering mobile-oriented services that can stand up to the already-high expectations of millennial business travelers, corporate travel companies are not only likely to stay competitive, but gain long-term loyalty.
Deem recently launched Deem Work Fource, a software suite for booking and managing corporate travel that provides unique solutions for travelers, corporate travel managers, travel management companies and suppliers. To learn more about how Deem Work Fource can improve your corporate travel business, visit Deem’s offerings at https://www.deem.com.
This content was created collaboratively by Deem and Skift’s branded content studio, SkiftX.
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