28 April 2008 | Jake Kanter
Outsourced and contract staff will no longer be eligible for "buyer" membership status from the Institute of Travel Management (ITM).
From now on only those employed to manage business travel full time by an organisation will be considered "buyers". The business travel industry group has opened a new category - "industry practitioner" - for those on contract or working for an outsourced provider.
ITM members voted "overwhelmingly" in favour of the change at the institute's conference in Dublin last week.
Also, consultants and account managers who work for organisations such as travel management companies, and were previously considered "supplier" members, will join the new practitioner category.
Paul Tilstone, executive director of the ITM, said the vote of support reflects changes within the industry. "The board are delighted that the membership endorsed these changes and are confident that everyone will see the benefit of the new model once fully implemented."
The ITM will introduce the changes over the next two months.