How to transform data into actionable insights that help you make good business decisions for your managed travel program.

Travel managers want their travel program data to generate insights—not just reports. Here are some strategies to help transform your mountain of data into gold.

1. Set the right KPIs.

Choose key performance indicators (KPIs) that align with your program’s goals. This will give structure to your data and help you measure success.

2. Look at the big picture.

Avoid viewing reports in isolation because it’s easy to miss larger trends. Instead, look for the why behind the what. Once you know the reasons behind spend, your potential actions become much clearer.

3. Create stories.

Business intelligence involves telling highly relevant, persuasive data stories, personalized and delivered to your target audience in easy-to-understand ways. Finding the most compelling stories also means gathering data from a wider, less structured set of sources, including booking channels, GPS information, supplier ratings and even social media. Telling data stories designed to resonate with company leaders, travelers or suppliers helps you sell your ideas faster and influence your program’s performance more effectively.

4. Go beyond reports.

Reports and analyses are part of business intelligence, and using them gives you many benefits. But, pushing further into more complex analytics and modeling opens a door to a whole new world of possibilities. Journey deeper into your data to get ahead of budget problems, adjust policy, drive volume, find gaps, benchmark your program internally or externally and adjust KPIs, all while taking good care of your travelers.