What’s In and Out in Business Travel Benefits: Findings from New SHRM Survey

Jul 13, 2016
Reimbursement for business travel is paramount for the on-the-go employee. In recent years, business travel benefits have shifted slightly to reflect the technology of the times and employee benefit preferences.

In June, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) released the results of its 2016 Employee Benefits Survey, which includes data comparing the workplace benefits offered in 1996 to today. SHRM research showed that the largest decrease in travel benefits was for reimbursement of personal telephone calls, likely due to the popularity of personal cell phones. Per diem meal reimbursement, however, has increased while travel to and from the airport remains fairly similar to recent years. 

The survey polled 3,490 HR professionals from a randomly selected sample of SHRM’s membership. 

Business Travel Benefits Highlights:

• Meal ticket: Seventy-six percent of organizations offer per diem or reimbursement for meals, an 11 percent increase from 2012. 
• Flight upgrades: Seventeen percent of companies offer first class/business class for international travel, while 13 percent of organizations offer first class/business class for domestic travel. 
• Phone dates: The popularity of cell phones have caused a decrease in reimbursement for personal phone calls while on business travel to only 33 percent. Fifty-four percent of organizations provided employees with company-owned business cell phone or smartphone for business or personal use. For those that did not offer company-owned phones, 20 percent offer a stipend to employees for the purchase of their own cell phone or smart phone. 
• Redeeming rewards: Sixty-eight percent of organizations allow their employees to keep the hotel points, while 67 percent allow their employees to keep frequent flyer miles. Fifty-eight percent of employers pay for Internet access during travel. 
• Airport travel: Eighty-eight percent of organizations offer parking reimbursement at the airport, 87 percent offer reimbursement for taxi or cab travel to and from the airport and 79 percent offer mileage reimbursement to and from the airport. 

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Kelly Morrison of SHRM Public Affairs at 703-535-6072 and Kelly.Morrison@shrm.org or Vanessa Hill at 703-535-6072 or Vanessa.Hill@shrm.org.

About the Society for Human Resource Management
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR professional society, representing 285,000 members in more than 165 countries. For nearly seven decades, the Society has been the leading provider of resources serving the needs of HR professionals and advancing the practice of human resource management. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. Visit us at shrm.org and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @SHRMPress. 

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