TAMS Launches Travel Assessor for Post-Pandemic Business Travel
The Travel and Meetings Society has posted a travel assessor online to help travel managers and travelers determine whether physical travel or a virtual conference is optimal, officials told BTN.
the free tool, created by the TAMS Technology Committee, uses branching logic and a series of questions to guide this decision at a time when some companies are beginning to prepare for a return to business travel.
“We have about 30 questions on the back-end, but depending on the user’s journey, they won’t select more than 15 in a single path,” said TAMS Technology Committee co-chair Peter Psaltakis, director of technical solutions at FCM Travel. “For example, you can click start and the first general question is whether your government allows travel to that destination. If so, continue. If not, there is a dead end.”
The questions, which address considerations such as border closures, quarantines, movement restrictions, cost, security, and return on investment, are grouped around six pillars: would travel be allowed, desirable, desirable, practical, affordable and sustainable, according to TAMS. The tool will come back with one of four suggested outcomes: a trip, a video conference, a suggestion to consider a video conference rather than travel, or a suggestion to do more research before making a decision.
Psaltakis said the idea for the tool came about when he and co-chair Karoline Mayr, founder and principal consultant of Get Travel Solutions, surveyed members in November and came up with a list of 10 projects for 2021.
“Vaccines were just starting to become a reality, so we were like, ‘In three to six months, how can we do something of value to the industry as a whole to help instill confidence to get back on the road? “he said.” This project was born from the need to orient people, whether they are a travel professional or regular traveler or a person in human resources, legal or at risk [management], because they’ll be asking these questions at some point along the way. So we thought, why not create this and try to take the guesswork out of them? “
A key decision for the committee was whether to build the tool from scratch or use a pre-existing solution. The team went with quiz creator Interact to create the quiz, Psaltakis said. Work began in January, but the ever-changing landscape of Covid-19 has posed new challenges. “What kind of PCR test do you need? [a destination] let you in with or without a vaccine? These are all challenges, “he said.” We are trying to make sure this is still relevant for next year, so it had to be broad enough but specific enough to continue in a year. .
The release comes about a month after TAMS announced a start-up incubator program.