Request for Proposal - Travel Agency
- Department: Finance & Administration
- Commitment: One-year contract with two-year options to renew
- Desired go live date: January 1st, 2021
- Under direction of: Brian Gabriel
About The Rainforest Alliance
Rainforest Alliance, a New York-based 501(c)3, and UTZ, an Amsterdam-based foundation, merged in 2018. Together, the new Rainforest Alliance is now a $60 million per year organization with offices in 17 countries (and growing) and over 480 staff. The merged organization has two main offices—one in Amsterdam and one in New York City.
The Rainforest Alliance is creating a more sustainable world by using social and market forces to protect nature and improve the lives of farmers and forest communities.
We work towards making responsible business the new normal through our certification program, tailored supply chain services, landscape and community work and advocacy.
RA is looking to contract the services of a non-exclusive travel agency to implement a managed travel solution for all staff. RA is seeking a travel agency that will put forth their best effort in resolving any travel-related problems or emergencies that may arise while traveling, and an agency that can demonstrate the achievement of cost savings for clients in comparable size and complexity. RA is looking to implement a global managed travel solution for all countries we operate in (For a full List of countries we are located in and staff numbers, please see the Annex). The largest share of international travellers are from the US/EU offices.
Currently, the US-based staff utilize a managed travel platform on Concur (SAP Travel System) to book flights, US trains, hotels, and car rentals. Staff also occasionally book through email or phone depending on the route. The Amsterdam-based staff utilize a local travel agency. They make all travel bookings via the travel agent’s website, email, or phone.
RA staff travel to over 60 different countries world-wide. Popular Rainforest Alliance destinations include Brazil, Cameroon, China, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of Congo, European Union, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam, United Kingdom, and the United States
The following chart includes more information on the organization’s historical bookings.
Payment for travel services will be made by Rainforest Alliance's corporate credit card(s).
Scope of Services
Rainforest Alliance is seeking a fully managed travel solution to consolidate travel bookings within the newly merged organization. Ideally, the proposed solution should integrate with Concur.
Contractor Services at a minimum, must include:
- Provide Rainforest Alliance a qualified project manager (overseeing services for both locations) and reservation agent(s);
- Reservation agents shall be fluent in English and experienced in providing international travel management. Individuals booking for US or EU funded activities will be familiar with required government requirements. Adequate substitutes will be provided during absences and/or when service levels are negatively impacted, as determined by Rainforest Alliance.
- Project Manager will be responsible for administering, coordinating, and managing travel operations in both the US and the EU.
- Reservations, issuance, and delivery of e-tickets for air, land, or rail transport with seat assignments;
- Reservations for hotel and car rentals;
- Provide detailed travel itineraries to travelers;
- Visa and passport services and advise staff as required;
- Advise on necessary health requirements including vaccinations whether required or suggested for foreign travel;
- Coordinate and negotiate preferred vendor contracts with hotels and other travel providers;
- Coordinate and make reservations for large Rainforest Alliance gatherings including negotiating block hotel room reservations, booking commercial auto/bus rentals, and/or charter flights, as necessary;
- Tracking of travel credits;
- 24-hour phone number accessible for travelling staff to make emergency itinerary changes. The Contractor is responsible for ensuring any subcontractors provide compliant emergency services;
- Generate invoices and reports by cost center and corporate credit card;
- Provide Rainforest Alliance management reports on total expenditures by travel vendor, advance purchase information, and savings reports;
- Contractors must be capable of providing Rainforest Alliance information on greenhouse gases and carbon footprints, with carbon estimates shown on proposed air travel itineraries.
Contractor capabilities must include:
- Booking the lowest cost option for requested service class fare satisfying Rainforest Alliance's mission taking full advantage of any and all government, corporate, group and/or seasonal rates available.
- Travel agency shall provide access to Humanitarian airfare rates.
- Comply when mandatory with US Government Federal travel Regulations including but not limited to Fly America Act and European Open Skies Regulations.
- Separating out the cost of personnel travel from business travel if an employee decides to include personal travel. Personnel travel should be able to be paid directly by the employee with the travel agency.
- Maintain a list of vendors and/or locations Rainforest Alliance management has determined Rainforest Alliance staff should not utilize or transit through.
- During any emergencies (strikes, natural disasters, fires, government declared emergencies), contract shall maintain operations to support Rainforest Alliance. This includes maintaining 24-hour services (and emergency response line) and supporting Rainforest Alliance staff in response to the emergency situation including re-booking tickets and providing necessary delivery of tickets to impacted staff.
- Maintain an internal process for identifying and correcting deficiencies in the quality of services furnished to Rainforest Alliance. This includes but is not limited to surveying Rainforest Alliance staff.
- Demonstrate capability to adequately manage Personal Identifying Information and confirm with EU GDPR.
- Be able to, at minimum, book fares in USD and EUR. With preference to book in other currencies, if possible, to serve non-US and non-EU staff.
- VIP services for Executive staff or frequent fliers including service upgrades, lounge passes, etc.
- Availability of price re-shopping tool for competitive airfare rates
Rainforest Alliance will pay transaction fees. Contractor may only charge one transaction fee per itinerary per individual when ticket is issued, regardless of the number of tickets issues for that itinerary. No transaction fees will be incurred until a ticket is booked. Additional transaction fees will be paid for changes requested by Rainforest Alliance staff only when it requires a ticket to be re-issued.
If the Contractor must change and/or re-issue a ticket because the Contractor or Rainforest Alliance staff member notices Contractor-caused error, no additional transaction fee with be charged to change or re-issue the ticket. Group booking fees will also be considered.
All transaction fees shall be detailed in the proposal submitted to Rainforest Alliance.
Ownership of Material
All data, technical information, materials gathered, oriented, developed, prepared, used or obtained in the performance of the contract, including but not limited to, all reports, surveys, plans, written procedures which are completed for or are a result of services required under this contract shall and remain the property of Rainforest Alliance and shall be delivered to Rainforest Alliance upon a 30 day notice.
All financial, statistical, personnel and/or technical data supplied by Rainforest Alliance to the contractor is confidential. The contractor is required to use reasonable care to protect the confidentiality of such data. Any use, sale or offering of this data in any form by the contractor, or any individual or entity in the contractors charge or employ, will be considered a violation of this contract and may result in termination for cause. In addition, such conduct may be considered a breach of contract that is liable to litigation.
The contractor shall not use Rainforest Alliance's name, logos, images, or any data or results arising from the contract without first obtaining the prior written consent of Rainforest Alliance.
Suspension of Work
Rainforest Alliance may, for a valid reason, issue a stop order directing the contractor to suspend work under the contract for a specific time. The contract services shall be paid until the effective stop date of the stop order.
Financial Stability & COVID Plan
In light of the recent Novel Coronavirus Pandemic, Rainforest Alliance would like a report of the financial stability of the Contractor and its international network. Rainforest Alliance would like a report on the Contractor’s COVID response plan.
GENeral terms and conditions for Request for proposal
- Rainforest Alliance reserves the right to utilize other travel service providers, when necessary.
- Proposals and/or any additional information received after the submission time and date are subject to rejection by The Rainforest Alliance. Incomplete proposals may be rejected by Rainforest Alliance at its discretion.
- The Rainforest Alliance reserves the right to request additional information at any time during the procurement process.
- Rainforest Alliance is at liberty to make multiple or no selections as part of the proposal process. Rainforest Alliance also reserves the right to cancel the procurement.
- All proposal costs shall be borne by the applicant and will not be reimbursed by Rainforest Alliance.
Rainforest Alliance will consider the following when selecting this consultant:
- Cost proposal (15%)
- Customer Service Approach and Management Plan (15%)
- Understanding of Contract Services and Contractor Capabilities (10%)
- Experience working with international organizations with global footprint including references (30%)
- Emergency services and access for RA staff (20%)
- Project team (5%)
- Ability to meet preferred options (5%)
Proposal Process and Format
Proposals must be sent to the Project Manager, Brian Gabriel at firstname.lastname@example.org by August 7, 2020 11 PM EDT. Selection will be made no later than August 31, 2020. Incomplete proposals may be rejected by Rainforest Alliance at its discretion. Rainforest Alliance is at liberty to make multiple or no selections as part of the proposal process. Rainforest Alliance may contact finalist with additional clarification points, questions or best and final offers before making a final selection.
Proposals shall be submitted in PDF format including any relevant supporting documentation.
All proposals shall include the following:
- Contractor information
- Brief description of Contractor, including incorporation date and location, annual revenue, number of employees, and contact information.
- Any relevant memberships or certifications.
- Detailed information on TMC’s global network
- The Contractor’s values, missions and customer service approach and how it relates to Contractor’s performance.
- Description of Contractor’s experience with similar sized organizations with international footprint, broad geographic footprint, and multiple time zones.
- References (at least 3, include email and phone number) that can attest to the Contractor’s knowledge, customer service, flexibility, and indicate average annual travel volumes for each reference
- Description of Contractor’s reporting platform, including international network
- Detailed information on how Contractor will address Contractor Services and Contractor Capabilities listed above.
- Contractor’s approach for a global managed travel solution with integrated reporting.
- Contractor shall provide description on modes or models for customer service (off-site, web-based, etc.) including the number of dedicated travel agents, team approach, use of online booking tools, etc.
- Including information on the Project Manager (including CV) and any other resources that will be devoted to Rainforest Alliance.
- Contract shall provide information on their customer service best practice including, but not limited to:
- Average turnaround time for email, phone calls for travel arrangements
- Availability of back up agents, accessibility during holidays/non-peak hours, emergency access, etc. (a list of the holidays will be provided separately to the bid winner)
- Approach for ensuring lowest logical cost fares
- How the Contractor will manage situations when Rainforest Alliance staff identify lower cost fares.
- Approach for group bookings
- Contract shall provide information on what discounts will be made available to Rainforest Alliance.
- Detailed schedule of all fees. Costing for transaction fees shall detail rates for group booking rates, international/domestic, VIP services (if applicable), after hour rates (if applicable), visa services, upgrade tickets, award bookings, online bookings, etc.
- Contractor should include any one-time set-up costs.
- Contractor should also include information on rollout costs for any necessary integration with travel booking tools such as Concur.
- Contractor shall provide information on how it will resolve or address customer service issues or complaints. This should include the Contractor’s internal approach for managing and addressing deficiencies prior to Rainforest Alliance staff identifying problems.
- Information on the travel system, back-end and automated technology including any tools to automate travel bookings, approvals, quality control, etc.
- Example travel management reports available to Rainforest Alliance Management.
- Information on Contractor’s digital security strategy ensuring PII remains secure and information on how Contractor will ensure compliance with the EU GDPR.
- Suggested roll-out plan for RA staff ensuring a smooth transition from existing systems.
Thank you for your interest in working with The Rainforest Alliance
Rainforest Alliance Staff by Country