Imagine a restaurant without a menu where the chef and kitchen staff simply presented diners with a list of available ingredients with the intent of making customers whatever dishes they desired. This means the kitchen staff could, at any given moment, be making a wide variety of dishes from meatloaf and roasted chicken to salads and stews. This might sound great from a diner’s perspective, but from the point of the view chef, it would be chaos. A menu not only help diners dial-in on what meal they’d like prepared, but it also allows a restaurant to limit its number of offerings, which helps drive down cost, increase efficiency, and enhance the overall quality of product it provides to its customers.
Just like menus in the restaurant world, the same is true of voucher and offer templates in today’s travel industry. Because travel agencies and travel management companies work with so many suppliers on the back-end and customers on the front-end, the importance of a streamlined offer and voucher system cannot be overstated in leveraging optimal productivity and efficiency. Utilizing a flexible, agile voucher and offer template platform is increasingly an important value proposition as travel agencies must complete more and more transactions each day to remain competitive and relevant in today’s global travel landscape.
Many of the platforms available to create these templates are fast, inexpensive, and easy for travel agents to use - especially compared with the lost time, resources, and manpower that comes with creating individual vouchers or offers for any given transaction. With all this mind, here are a handful of reasons why offer and voucher templates should be a high-priority concern for travel agencies in today’s competitive marketplace.
Easy customization. It’s always easier, faster, and less expensive to alter an existing business practice or platform than it is to create something new from scratch. Imagine a travel agency needs to produce three or four different styles of vouchers to satisfy customers and clients. Starting over every time to create each separate voucher is a time-consuming, expensive process. However, with a template platform in place, travel agencies can simply alter an existing template to the specifications of each customer. Not only is this more efficient, travel agencies can alter or edit vouchers based on the availability of products and services, which can change quickly in today’s fast-paced travel marketplace due to cancellations, inclement weather conditions, and other variables.
Any situation, any context. Because creating voucher and offer templates is such a simple process - at least compared to generating new offers or vouchers as situations or transactions arise - travel agencies can maintain a number of different templates in a centralized hub or database where agents can access, modify, and distribute vouchers without significant disruption to existing workflows. This means agents no longer have to wait extended periods of time for new vouchers to be created, nor do they have to worry about creating offers for one-off or specialty products and services. By maintaining a robust holding of available templates, travel agencies can remove costly lead times in the creation of these documents to foster a more agile, responsive method of conducting business.
Enhanced reporting/analytics. Let’s face: today’s travel industry, even in the digital age, is inundated with documents, both physical and otherwise. This can often result in confusion, mismanagement of crucial data, or even overlooking entire data sets as travel agents struggle to maintain accurate records of transactions. However, offer and voucher templates provide travel agencies with the power to more effectively manage their documentation as agencies can adopt certain template design schemes based on internal needs. In addition, because the creation or altering of templates is often documented and tracked within the system an agent uses to create or edit the offer, it’s easier to manage and track the success rate of each offer or voucher as well as the efficiency of individual agents in positioning these offers.
The next time you’re looking over the menu at a restaurant, ask yourself: How much chaos would it cause if you sat down and ordered something off the menu based on ingredients you assume the restaurant has on hand? It could significantly hamper the chef’s ability to maintain a level of productivity throughout an evening’s service, right? The same is true for travel agencies who continue to operate without an offer or voucher template platform, and those agencies who continue to function in this manner will find themselves at a significant disadvantage in burgeoning global industry.