Do you have employees who travel often? Maybe you have a traveling sales team and the sales reps are always on the move. May be many of your employees attend training workshops and seminars. Others may go to conferences, and still others may go to meetings in other cities or even other countries. You may have employees who travel from branch offices to attend meetings at your head office annually.
Travel is something of a fact of life in today’s business world, as the above scenarios point out. If your employees are always on the move, you’ll want to be sure you’re creating effective travel policies to guide them while they’re on the road.
Why Do You Need a Policy?
First things first : Why do you need policies for traveling employees? There are actually quite a few reasons. Employee safety and your business’s duty of care should always be at the top of your priority list. Employees who are on the road are as much of a concern to you as employees who commute to the office every day or have an accident while in the workplace.
Next, you want to know what to do if something does happen, and your employees need guidelines so they know how to respond if they end up encountering trouble on the road. Do they know who to call or where to go if there’s an earthquake during their business trip to Taiwan?
Clear policies help everyone when these situations arise. It’s obvious why you need a policy in place. So how do you create one? You can use the following tips to get started.
1. Create a Comprehensive Safety Policy
As a starting point, review your company safety policies. While they may not cover travel specifically at this point, they can provide you with a jumping-off point. What are the safety protocols you follow and employ in the office? Who is the office safety manager?
These sorts of considerations form the basis of a more comprehensive safety policy within your business. Your existing policies may already lay out ground rules for employees who commute to work. You can adapt this framework to cover large-scale travel as well.
A comprehensive safety policy covers more than just what happens in the workplace. It will include provisions for inclement weather, for commuters, and for business travel as well.
2. Educate Employees
Knowledge is power, as the old saying goes. You can have the best and most comprehensive safety policy ever, but it won’t mean much if your employees don’t understand it or know about it.
That’s why it’s so important to educate your employees about your safety policies. Think about it. Do your employees know what to do if an emergency happens while they’re at the office? If not, there’s a slim chance your traveling employees will know what to do when there’s an emergency on the road.
Be sure to provide your employees with training and education about your safety policy. You might even =-consider workshops or seminars about specific subjects, such as providing CPR training.
When employees are headed out on the road, make sure they have the appropriate training. You’ll also want to supply them with resources they can access if they need to.
3. Use Technology to Provide Access
If your employees are on the floor of a trade show in Beijing, can they access their email? What would happen if they needed to send a message to someone in the office after a natural disaster hit? Would they be able to get the contact information or the information they need to proceed safely after a terrorist attack?
Using integrated technology can help your employees access the information they need and communicate with you, no matter where they are in the world. Providing the solution and clear policies about its use will help you keep your employees safe.