The number of remote, screen-based interchanges has grown incrementally since the onset of the pandemic. Technology has perpetually altered the way we work. But online isn’t the most suitable solution for all meeting types. Video calls perform well for certain meeting types, but occasionally it’s more effective to conduct business in person.
Weaknesses of virtual meetings
While virtual meetings and remote working are here to stay, they’re unlikely to indicate the death of business travel. Employees recognise that virtual is not the only way. They’re raising unease about depending on screen-based interaction as their primary meeting method. Unlike meeting in-person, virtual meetings lack human connection and provide limited interaction.
From the BCD Travel Survey of 738 business travellers that we conducted in July 2021, we learned that:
- 66% of respondents said virtual meetings lack human contact.
- 58% said that virtual meetings offer limited opportunities for interaction.
- 54% of respondents indicated that virtual meetings make it easy to get distracted.
- 51% indicated that virtual meetings are not always suitable for all situations.
- 49% of respondents revealed that technology issues often interrupt virtual meetings.
- And 28% admitted that virtual meetings often happen outside of working hours.
Travelling with purpose
It’s not apparent when business travel will return to pre-pandemic levels. The timing will differ by market and by the purpose of the trip. But it’s high time businesses, and travel managers started considering the shifting travel paradigm and how to modify their travel agendas to the new ways of working.
Vital tasks for a travel manager include:
- Measuring the value of travel.
- Demonstrating the quality of its outcome.
- Proving to internal stakeholders that it’s worthwhile.
The key is not to lower travel spending but to improve travel efficacy. As travel slowly increases, understanding both the company objectives and the traveller’s needs is crucial for travel managers.
Tips for safe in person meetings
COVID-19 vaccines have made business trips a lot safer than it was this time last year, but there are precautions you need to take nonetheless. Keep in mind a few tips below.
- Know the COVID-19 rates. Suppose your destination is red-hot with COVID-19; your chances of becoming ill rise, even if you are fully vaccinated.
- Select your method of travel. Flying is reasonably safe. Airlines demand that all passengers wear masks onboard. If you are unvaccinated, stay in your seat and keep your mask on, particularly when nearby passengers remove theirs to eat or drink.
- Bypass crowded spaces. Avoid indoor places packed with people whose vaccination status can’t be known.
- Consult a travel manager. Your travel manager is best equipped to help you plan a safe business trip. At Rennies Travel, we put your health and wellness first. Let us be your compass.