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Mobile technology – more than just a carry on

Bertrand Saillet, General Manager at FCM Travel Solutions South East Asia | Oct. 11, 2016
The extensive reach of mobile technology in all aspects of our lives has blurred the distinction between work and play, allowing employees to work beyond the physical workplace as well as to better integrate their personal life with their work life.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

Mobile technology has undergone several disruptions since its usage became widespread, quickly rendering what was once ground-breaking as common-place today. Most do not realise the breakneck pace at which mobile technology is changing until they contemplate how it has transformed the way we work, play and live. For instance, being able to shoot and watch videos on the go, which can be easily taken for granted today, is in fact a remarkable achievement, given mobile data was only introduced less than two decades ago.

The extensive reach of mobile technology in all aspects of our lives has blurred the distinction between work and play, allowing employees to work beyond the physical workplace as well as to better integrate their personal life with their work life. A survey by Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) has shown that business travellers are increasingly seeking greater control of their own travel with the aid of mobile technology. Ranging from wearables to mobile wallets, business travellers are beginning to embrace the flexibility and choice afforded by mobile technology. 

Given the plethora of options available in the market place, business travellers may not fully realise how they can best leverage on this technology to better manage their business travel needs. As such, it's worth brushing up on the latest trends in order to elevate the overall business travel experience.

App-solutely up-to-date

Decision making executives rely on the most updated information on their fingertips in order to make decisions as accurately as possible. This does not change when they travel for work. Travel-centric apps that are able to aggregate vital information such as security alerts, weather, currency rates and booking details gives business travellers the benefit of having information aggregated on one platform. This will enable business travellers to be more productive as they are able to react immediately to any unforeseen circumstances.

Staying up-to-date also contributes to the employers' duty of care to their employees as it plays a part in ensuring their safety. Notably, travel-centric apps allow employers to monitor their employees' location and send push notifications in an emergency or by allowing travellers to check-in with their company upon arrival at a destination.

Chatting up business travel 

Looking ahead, the mobile experience is set to get more intimate with the introduction of chatbots, or computer programmes designed to simulate conversation and address queries instantly. Similar to apps, chatbots are able to assist with all aspects of travel - itineraries, gate changes, driving directions, weather, restaurant recommendations and reservations.  

However, chatbots go a step further as they pick up on cues, such as travel patterns and preferences and update travellers accordingly. For example, if it is a traveller's first time in a particular city, he will receive more information and recommendations than if it was a standing monthly trip.  Chatbots are also flexible enough to communicate on common messaging platforms, including Facebook messenger or SMS. 

 

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