Always on Alert – A Female Employee’s Perspective on Corporate Travel
For Indian women, safety is the trigger word. Any woman will be able to narrate the sorry state of affairs in the country when it comes to traveling on roads. From catcalling, slurring, molestation to even rape incidents, living life as a woman has become a matter of daily struggle. With a deep-seated patriarchal set up that tends to glorify the female sex only in the scriptures, India has still not been able to provide its female population with a safe environment where they can thrive freely.
In the last few decades, women have been moving out into the corporate world to explore their skills and fulfill their ambitions. But the road to success is not going to be easy.
In a study, conducted by Maiden Voyage, sexual harassment accounts for over half (51.2%) of all incidents encountered by female business travellers in the United States. While this observation came primarily from American business travellers, the numbers would not be different for female corporate travellers in India as well. As per an article published by Hindustan Times “Till June 2017, 58 rape cases have been registered in Gurgaon, while another 53 cases were filed under the Pocso Act (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012). The police also filed 148 cases of molestation”.
These statistics were backed with the narratives shared by working women who encountered the cases of molestation and eve-teasing while on their way to work. Instances like these not only hinder women from entering the workspaces but also support the mentality that leads to these instances in the first place. Inaccessibility and a safe environment at the workspace affect the chances of advancement in one’s career.
In terms of expenses too, corporate travel is not a pocket-friendly affair. In a bid to avoid crowded metros, buses, and local trains where the chances of groping and eve-teasing are higher, women tend to shell out more money on cab services. A lot of small and mid-size companies lack policies that ensure transport to women if the need arises and do not have any mechanism to ensure their safety while travelling to work.
With more and more women taking up jobs, acquiring senior positions in organizations, and taking up responsibilities that entail frequent travelling to different workplaces within cities and countries; it’s high time for organizations to work on their travel policies, keeping their female employees in mind.
A Corporate Travel Management Solution allows an organization (even the mid-size firms) to book cabs for their female employees via verified travel operators. These travel management solutions also come with apps that can be used by the organization and the corporate traveler alike to track vehicles in real-time. In the case of adversity, the information of the traveller can be immediately sent to the family members and prompt action can be taken to curb any dangerous situation.
Beep Corporate enables female travellers with an option to pre-book their cabs, check the status in real-time, and track the route against the data submitted via the portal. Not only it ensures safety but also gives a sense of empowerment and freedom to the female corporate travelers to plan their work schedule without worrying about the “safe” hours.