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Stay in Control!

Impressions of the Corporate Travel Forum

Trust is good, checking is better – especially in times of digitalisation and disruption. That’s the fifth CTF event concluded that the industry is facing enormous challenges, as big/smart data, artificial intelligence and market consolidations must be as much kept in mind negotiated hotel rates, the traveller and their booking behaviour.  

Welcome to Berlin, a warm welcome to CTF 2017 – 
good morning from the Westhafen Event & Convention Center (WECC).
Welcome to Berlin, a warm welcome to CTF 2017

When it’s about negotiating the future, the A-league are essential. That's why HRS invited former German finance minister Peer Steinbrück to be the keynote speaker at the fifth Corporate Travel Forum, asking him to draw a picture of “Europe’s future in a globalised world”. Thorsten Eicke (Siemens) and Bernd Burkhardt (Daimler), two industry heavyweights also couldn’t pass up the opportunity to weigh in on their strategies and visions for sustainable travel management in front of more than 200 industry colleagues. 

Traveller centricity equals satisfaction equals adaptation? Questions from HRS presenter Anja Turner to Conichi CEO Max Waldmann (2nd from left), Christian Spieker, Head of Corporate Services at ZEB (centre), Martin Biermann, CTO of HRS Innovation HUB (4th from left), and Petar Djekic, VP Discovery at Rocket Internet.
Traveller centricity equals satisfaction equals adaptation? Questions from HRS presenter Anja Turner to Conichi CEO Max Waldmann (2nd from left), Christian Spieker, Head of Corporate Services at ZEB (centre), Martin Biermann, CTO of HRS Innovation HUB (4th from left), and Petar Djekic, VP Discovery at Rocket Internet.

The keynotes were supplemented by podium discussions and panels of suppliers such as HRS, AirPlus, Sixt, DHL, I:FAO and Conichi, and it was here where the terms “digitalisation”, “artificial intelligence” and “predictive” dominated the debates. 

For example, both Siemens VP Eicke and Daimler’s Burkhardt forecast that a large part of the time-consuming processes that a traveller must go through today, will cease to exist in the future, thanks to artificial intelligence and “predictive software”. Their predictions? If the effort required for an employee to travel on business is minimised, then Travel Management can hand over more personal responsibility for the remaining decisions. By means of this compromise, the traveller will no longer make bookings that bypass the system, according to these calculations. 

Lunch? Go on then! High time to discuss, go into detail and swap ideas.
Lunch? Go on then! High time to discuss, go into detail and swap ideas.

The motto of this fifth CTF wasn't “Stay in Control!” for nothing. And since this is a topic that concerns the industry worldwide, the CTF doesn't just have a presence in Germany.   

More info at www.corporate-travel-forum.com