3 tips for risk managers protecting international corporate travelers

Posted on Mar 31, 2014

For corporate travelers, overseas business trips can be a thrilling experience and an opportunity to experience a whole new aspect of the world. However, with new destinations, corporate travelers have to be aware of the potential risks that surround their trip.

Incidents such as political unrest, drug trafficking, kidnapping, street crime and terrorism plague some areas of the globe. Corporate risk managers have to make sure their employees are well-educated and are in tune with all the safety precautions.

Here are three tips for risk managers protecting international corporate travelers:

1. Prepare for the destination

Some business travelers move across the globe at a fast pace and visit multiple countries each year. However, risk management teams have to understand and increase their situational awareness of the locations they are sending their workers. By acknowledging and doing some light research on a destination, workers will be prepared for possible incidents, but more importantly, they will be able to avoid areas of high risk.

Expatriates need to register with the U.S. embassy at the country they are staying enough in advance before they travel. In the event of a nationwide crisis, this will help officials know how to locate workers and help get them back home reported Risk Management Magazine.

2. Understand duty of care

Risk management teams should understand the duty of care that goes into protecting their corporate travelers when sending them to international destinations. According to Executive Travel Magazine, organizations have an obligation to the health, safety and security of their business travelers when they go across borders.

Ignoring duty of care could cost an organization tens of thousands of dollars when putting an employee's safety at risk. Businesses have to understand the potential liabilities for a worker's long-term care, reported the source.

"[Duty of care is] the obligation employers have for the health, safety and security of their employees when they travel across borders," Dr. Lisbeth Claus, a human resources professor at Willamette University, explains, according to the source.

3. Inform traveler on how to get help

In the event of a crisis, travelers that receive an emergency notification can have more time to react and make a decision. Risk management teams should keep their business travelers and expatriates aware of new information as it arises. The more a business traveler knows, the better they will be able to mitigate risk.

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