ITIJ spoke to Tony Ridley, CEO of Australia-based Intelligent Travel, about technology, risk and the global picture for business and leisure travel. This profile first appeared in ITIJ Issue 170, March 2015.

How did you get started in the travel industry?
I began working on a remote project growing commercial pearls for the fashion industry with fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) staff, and responsibility for the safety and security of all those travelling to and from the project. This professional skill evolved over time to specifically focus on the mobility and travel of employees for our businesses, inclusive of Intelligent Travel, or those of clients we serviced around the world.

With businesses becoming increasingly global, what can employers do to ensure that their staff are well looked-after overseas, and could large businesses be doing more in this respect?
Businesses of all shapes and sizes, including large businesses, should be doing more to personalise their support and focus on individuals and journeys, rather than ‘group’ catch-alls such as policy, country advice, analysis and so forth. The obligations of businesses are actually poorly understood, with the whole idea of ‘duty of care’ misplaced with the idea of a single-step product or service as being the ‘solution’. Furthermore, the actual legal references and compliance requirements stem from health and safety standards, which are far more prescriptive toward individual or case-by-case evaluation, specific to the task undertaken, and do not permit for ‘one-size-fits-all’ considerations for employee safety. Evidence of just how misunderstood this concept is and how misaligned businesses are is demonstrated when trip variations, different people, different levels of experience, different levels of preparation or differing trip purposes share exactly the same travel risk rating, regardless of all these obvious variations. This is not travel safety, it is business convenience. Any business that subscribes to this practice places themselves – and their managers and travellers – at significant risk of non-compliance and possible litigation in the event of negative events.

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Travel Safety Experts
Travel Safety Experts

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