You’ve blinked and it’s the end of your first quarter with your new TMC. We know how it goes – you’ve barely had time to look at how you’ve found the last few months, let alone the opinions of your team or wider organisation.
However you’ve felt your first quarter has gone, there are certain things you need to ask at this point to ensure you’re getting the best value from your account manager and to be clear on an action plan for the months to come.
#1 “How does our organisation compare so far with other customers?”
Your account manager will typically work with other accounts, so take advantage of this! What are their other customers doing that could help you improve your travel programme or give you ideas for cost savings? Is there anything at this point that you can change to ensure that the account runs smoothly?
Typically your first official review should be after 3 months of your Go Live date, this helps your account manager gather data to review, analyse and recommend changes if needed. Ask them if they see the same pattern when it comes to online adoption of other new customers in their first 3 months, and whether the savings are typically the same for each customer.
#2 “From reviewing the initial data, is there anything that you feel you could improve on?”
Hopefully, your Account Manager would have suggested cost savings or room for improvement during the review. However, if they haven’t then ask the following questions:
- Do we need to revisit our travel policy?
- Is our travel policy too stringent or generous?
- How can we make further efficiencies?
- Are we communicating effectively with our bookers and travellers?
#3 “How are we dealing with feedback?”
Feedback should be a two-way process, so look to discuss:
- Has there been positive or negative feedback from the Reservations Team about the account, travellers and bookers?
- Have any travellers, bookers or finance staff been in touch to provide feedback, if so can they share the details?
- How often are Customer Satisfaction Surveys sent out? If they are sent out, then what is the process i.e. email users a link to a survey, how is data reviewed and shared etc.
#4 “Do we have a continuous improvement cycle in place?”
If so how do you both work together to set objectives, implement actions to reach the set objective, analyse the results to see if there has been a change in behaviour, savings or both and continue on the path of improvement of your travel programme?
If they do not have an improvement cycle in place, then look to see how they propose change, implement change and work with you to improve your travel programme or let you know that what you are currently doing is okay.
#5 “What are the next steps?”
Now that the first review is complete, how long will it take for your Account Manager to follow up on the review and actions? What will they be taking away to action and what will you take away to action? Agree on target dates to complete actions.
This will be a good time to also discuss when the next review will be held, get a date in the diary because time flies! Also, check if they will they arrange a catch-up call with you on a monthly or fortnightly basis to keep on top of actions, feedback and maintain a great relationship.