28 April 2005 | David Arminas
Nestlé UK has moved its travel buying into purchasing and facilities management functions and has made its travel manager redundant.
Claire Baker, a senior buyer of goods and services in the purchasing department, and Alan Sturgeon, facilities manager, will take over contract management responsibilities and work with BTI, Nestlé's travel management company.
Baker and Sturgeon now lead on negotiations for deals including air, rail, hotel and car hire.
BTI serves Nestlé with 11 people split between the food manufacturer's offices in York and Croydon, and handles day-to-day travel requirements such as bookings and ticket distribution.
Ian Nurdin, the former travel manager, left Nestlé at the end of last month.
He started as an administration clerk before entering travel buying 20 years ago, and was appointed Nestlé UK's first travel manager six years ago to set up the deal with BTI.
"There is a belief in the corporate world that travel buyers don't employ the same rigorous disciplines as a purchaser.
But I would argue that travel buying is not the same as buying a commodity and so there is a need for a specialist to buy travel."
At the Institute of Travel Management's annual conference this month, Nurdin stepped down as vice-chairman and chairman elect.
Nestlé would not comment on the moves other than to say that "potential European contracts negotiated outside the UK mean we no longer have the need for a dedicated travel manager".