Top Reads from 1st Quarter 2010

Last quarter’s most popular topics covered travel ROI, savings, metrics and reverse auctions:

ROI on Travel and Meetings – Why Bother? – challenges the feasibility of placing ROI metrics on trips; says there is a “good enough” alternative.  It’s called management.

The Real Question Behind Travel ROI – searching for post-trip ROI is a long walk in the hot sun.  Far better to focus on this essential question: “What’s the most effective way to achieve my goal?” Sabre and Cisco showed an interesting approach.

Travel Benchmarking Done Well – the Travel GPA tool focuses on actionable benchmarks – stuff that travel managers really need to pay attention to.

Savings Metrics, Rat Farms and KPIs Gone Bad – takes a critical look at three common definitions of savings, and the unintended consequences of each.

Reverse Auctions for Hotels and Car Rates? – wonders if travel suppliers may offer more reverse auctions for their inventory, and the implications for buyers, TMCs and GDSs.

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Savings Metrics, Rat Farms and KPIs Gone Bad

Decades ago, goes the story*,  the French colonialists grew tired of the rat population in Hanoi.  So the French offered a bounty on dead rats.  What happened?  The industrious Vietnamese began raising rats.

Therein lies the trouble with metrics.  Be careful what you measure.  And what metric is more important than savings in the procurement world?

You’d think that such a basic word as savings would have a pretty well-agreed definition – especially when the S word is the focal point of just about every RFP process.  Unfortunately, there are very big differences in how buyers define and measure savings.  Let’s have a look at the slightly satirical implications for travel procurement. Continue reading