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May 27, 2009

Remuneration Task Force Report suggests transparency at a cost

The Institute of Travel & Meetings (ITM) recently released the first draft of its Remuneration Task Force Report to attendees of the joint forum between the association and the Guild of Travel Management Companies (GTMC).
The report, part 1 of a series the association is to create, looks at the forces that have shaped the remuneration model to date, the financial relationships between buyers and TMC’s and the issue of transparency.

The report also acts as a reference for existing remuneration models and looks at alternative models for the future, while suggesting that a move to clearer transparency may be the right thing for the industry, but may be difficult to achieve and come at a cost.
Commenting on the report, ITM’s chief executive, Paul Tilstone, said: “The report takes a long hard look at where we are today and doesn’t shy away from the difficult questions the industry needs to ask itself.

“It is a wonderful reference guide for anyone – whether a buyer, TMC or supplier – wishing to explore some of the issues with remuneration in the business travel market.” 

In relation to the “transparency at a cost” comment he added: “Procurement has driven down costs and the TMCs say they are more reliant than ever on the incentives paid by suppliers. While the concern of buyers is that these incentives cloud the intermediaries representation, they need to be aware that any move for greater knowledge of, or even a share of, these incentives could lead to higher costs for their organisations.”
Tilstone also announced that part 2 of the series would engage suppliers, such as airlines and hoteliers, and distribution channels to explore the costs and incentives further down the chain.

The association is looking for stakeholders from each sector to engage with the development of this second part later in the year in its work to create a complete reference to remuneration in the travel and meetings sector.

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