Sending team members on oversea work trips is a weekly process for most companies, and as an employer, it is vital to ensure employees are kept safe and secure on their travels. Here are some tips on maintaining a prominent level of security while your team are representing your company abroad:
When staff travel for work, their work ethic and attitude can become more relaxed. They may take actions that they wouldn’t usually, such as staying out later for work drinks or being late for meetings. Implement rules for working overseas in your company policy. Reinforce these rules in staff meetings, telling all team members that they must be extra vigilant. State that they must take secure transport, not travel into unsafe areas and if necessary, use safety equipment.
Every country has their own hazards and weather conditions that people must be cautious of. Consider the risks within the location your employees are travelling to. Organise training so staff are aware of what to do in the case of storms, earthquakes or other possible hazards.
Crime is a major risk that employees must also be wary of. Training for those travelling must involve actions for people to take when they feel unsafe. Send an e-mail including the address of staff accommodation, the country’s police number and city areas deemed unsafe to travel in.
Food and Drink
People here are accustomed to clean, fresh water available on tap, but this is not the case for every country. Some places advise locals to only drink bottled water, so ensure staff know this or they may become extremely ill. Sick staff will not bode well in terms of a productive trip, making everything come to a halt. Advising staff on food and drink safety will prevent any sickness and ensure the work trip is worthwhile.
Understanding of the Culture
Offer language classes with a focus on business for those team members that travel often. An understanding of certain phrases and keywords will help them feel comfortable when being taken out for business lunches and for meetings. An awareness of the language can also help if they get into dangerous situations, as they can ask for help if needed.
Foreigners can be target for thieves, so remind all staff to carry all important documents in a secure bag and to take extra caution when travelling in busy areas. It’s a good idea to ask staff to scan documents and email them to themselves or upload in an online drive in case they get lost on the journey.
Forward planning is crucial for any successful business trips; documents, risk assessments and a crisis management policy will help any trip go smoothly, wherever in the world you are sending your team.
For more helpful HR tips and advice, CLICK HERE to sign up to our newsletter.