CWT Telepresence helps clients seamlessly integrate telepresence into their managed travel program

Paris | November 03, 2010

Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT), a global leader specializing in business travel management, has launched an enhanced service offering designed to help clients seamlessly integrate telepresence into their managed travel program. CWT Telepresence is a packaged, end-to-end solution with four components: strategy definition, change management and decision support, booking and fulfillment, and reporting and optimization. It enables clients with private telepresence rooms, as well as those benefitting from the company’s agreement with Tata Communications1, to make the most of telepresence facilities at their disposal, including 22 public Cisco TelePresence Suites Tata offers around the world.2

As a complement to business travel, telepresence enables companies to reduce costs while successfully bringing people together to meet business objectives. By offering clients a better understanding of market trends and best practices, CWT helps them to define and implement a telepresence strategy that effectively mirrors their travel program and overall business needs.

To encourage the adoption and appropriate use of telepresence, CWT provides change management support, including a review of the travel policy to help define rules for effective telepresence usage. Tools that facilitate travelers’ decision making are also offered. They include a map of the public Cisco TelePresence Suites covered by the Tata agreement from which travelers can choose, a CWT Telepresence Savings Calculator that helps travelers compare the cost of telepresence to a business trip within specifically defined parameters (e.g., number of participants attending the meeting and the cities where they are based), and an online booking form. These tools are accessed via CWT Portal, the company’s gateway to all Web-based travel services. 

At the point of sale, CWT has specially trained travel counselors in three service centers in London; St. Louis, Missouri; and outside of Delhi. Responsible for booking and fulfillment, they have full access to Tata’s network of Cisco TelePresence Suites. They can also facilitate bookings between private and public telepresence facilities if the technologies are compatible.

CWT provides travel managers with quarterly reporting that enables them to optimize their telepresence strategy as it relates to their overall travel program. In addition to usage, key performance indicators gauge cost and time savings. 

According to Pauline Quéré, CWT vice president, Global Customer Product Marketing, telepresence can be a “compelling alternative” to business travel under certain circumstances. She cites as prime examples regularly scheduled internal meetings that last less than a day and involve colleagues located around the world, as well as companies that continuously travel to and from cities with public telepresence facilities. “Telepresence is state-of-the-art technology that can help companies cut travel costs without compromising their business objectives. Once you’ve effectively negotiated with preferred air and hotel suppliers, telepresence, when used properly, can be a new lever

1 In November 2009, CWT and Tata Communications signed an agreement that enables CWT clients to access the public Cisco Telepresence Suites Tata offers in 22 locations around the world. 2 Tata Communications is expected to add 10 Cisco TelePresence Suites to its network by the end of the year.

for savings. There are other benefits as well. Meetings can be conducted more often, bringing more people together quickly and easily for greater collaboration. Telepresence can also increase contacts with clients and business partners outside of the company. And a better work-life balance for employees, coupled with a more sustainable impact on the environment, are also important. These are all reasons why CWT is eager to help clients successfully integrate telepresence into their managed travel programs,” she said.

About Carlson Wagonlit Travel

Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) is a global leader specializing in business travel management. Present in more than 150 countries, CWT serves companies of all sizes, as well as government institutions and non-governmental organizations. By leveraging both the expertise of its people and leading-edge technology, CWT helps clients derive the greatest value from their travel program in terms of savings, service, security and sustainability. The company is also committed to providing best-in-class service and assistance to travelers. CWT services and solutions comprise four lines of business: Traveler & Transaction Services, Program Optimization, Safety & Security, and Meetings & Events. In 2009, sales volume for wholly owned operations and joint ventures totaled US$21.4 billion. For more information, please visit our global Website at www.carlsonwagonlit.com.

Media Contact:
Stefanie Tschida
1 763 212 1404
stschida@carlsonwagonlit.com

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