PAS 3001:2016 Travelling for work – Responsibilities of an organisation for health, safety and security – Code of practice. What can companies do from a Travel Security Risk Management perspective to comply?
What is PAS 3001:2016? To date there have been no formal guidelines as to Travel Risk Management best practice. This has now changed, and in September 2016 the British Safety Institute (BSI) published PAS 3001:2016. A Publicly Available Specification (PAS) is a sponsored fast-track standard, in this case by International SOS, that is developed through a consensus-building process facilitated by BSI. PAS 3001:2016 provides a code of practice for organisations to formally assess the risks to their travelling employees and guidance for developing policies and strategies to mitigate those risks. Whilst not compulsory, organisations complying to PAS3001:2016 will be able to formally demonstrate their commitment towards their employees.
What are the risks to travellers when on overseas assignment? Injuries are among the leading causes of death and disability in the world, and they are the main cause of preventable deaths among travellers. According to the World Health Organisation, worldwide 1.25 million people are killed each year in road traffic accidents and as many as 50 million more are injured.
Petty crime and theft are the next major sources of employee distress and business disruption whilst overseas, added to that are jet lag, unfamiliarity with the culture and environment, and different laws and legal obligations.
According to the World Health Organisation, worldwide 1.25 million people are killed each year in road traffic accidents and as many as 50 million more are injured
Recent attacks in countries and cities widely perceived to be "Low" risk – Paris, recent attacks in cities and towns in the US, Tunisia, Jakarta, Ankara, and Brussels have led to an increased expectation from employees that their companies will fulfil their Duty of Care responsibilities toward them, and will look after them when things go wrong whilst on company business. Can your organisation confidently assert that you do, and that you can?
What is Duty of Care? Duty of Care refers to an acknowledged and ethically based corporate culture, sponsored and led by senior management, whereby employers care about the health, safety, security and physical and mental health of their travelling employees and families. They commit to this by developing and delivering appropriate travel risk management strategies to safeguard their employees from possible harm, and to respond and support them should a serious incident occur – whether of a medical or security nature.
Best practice in Travel Risk Management
Travel Risk Management (TRM) is a proactive, risk-based programme that sets out a clear and sustainable framework for an organisation to identify, manage and mitigate the risks faced by their business travelers. Ultimately it prepares the organisation to respond to a critical incident, and to support their employees in distress. Policies and procedures are approved by Senior Management to prepare their employees for travel - and the organization to support them. The below is a simple 5 Step process and check list that organisations are recommended to follow to ensure a robust Travel Risk Management program.
Step 1.PREPARE their employees for travel through pre-Travel Safety Awareness Training and prepare the organisation to support them through comprehensive Travel Security Policies and Procedures to ASSESS THE RISKS through dynamic Risk Assessments, in order to authorise and implement travel safely
Step 2. Have the capability to TRACK their business travellers, and can COMMUNICATE with them immediately at any given point in time
Step 3. The organisation should be able to monitor developing risks and ongoing situations, conducting dynamic risk assessments, and can INFORM staff and managers in a timely fashion of relevant developing threats
Step 4. The organisation can provide expert ADVICE to managers and staff, and call on trusted local support when necessary
Step 5. In a worst case situation, the organisation is prepared to RESPOND should they need to get their employees out of danger - either through internal means, or through the dedicated services of integrated Security and Medical Assistance providers
How does your organisation measure up?
A recent survey of HR professionals and Business Travellers (October 2015) conducted by the Collinson Group identified some concerning statistics which point to the fact that organisations are still falling short of their Duty of Care responsibilities, specifically:
Only 38% of HR professionals questioned say their firm conducts risk assessments before an employee travels to a high-risk area for business, and of those who do, 58% rely on a simple Google search.
19% had no corporate travel risk partner or travel management company (TMC) in place.
Over half (55%) think their TMC provides medical and security assistance for employees abroad if an incident occurs and over 40% think these firms handle crisis management and response, when in fact they may not
52% of HR professionals think they are wholly responsible for their company's business travel policy and 12% say there is a blend of responsibilities with no overall ownership
Economic Impact of Travel & Tourism 2015 report that Business travel spending globally was expected to grow from 4.0% in 2015 to USD1,222.3bn, and rise by 3.2% pa to USD1,679.0bn in 2025. This is a significant upward trend.
If companies cannot put their hands on their hearts, and state that they have a robust Travel Risk Management Program in place to support their employees, then now is the time to start putting one in place and to take full accountability their key assets -namely their people.