The International Association of Conference Centres (IACC) recently polled more than 150 meeting planners around the world to find out what features are most important to them now and in the future.
“While the overall objectives and goals of meetings have generally remained constant, there are clear indicators that the adoption and use of technology, the physical design of meeting space, and the emphasis on experience creation will be increasingly important,” Mark Cooper, IACC CEO, said in a statement. “Compounding the pressure on meeting planners to adopt and incorporate these tangible meeting elements is the increased requirement to demonstrate the value of meetings to their leadership, peers, or clients while simultaneously operating in an environment of shrinking budgets. It is critical for meeting venues to respond accordingly and provide those elements that are increasingly sought after and important to the overall meeting objectives.”
According to the survey,
—75 percent of responding meeting planners report that their current role involves more “experience creation” versus two to five years ago
—More than 77 percent of respondents report that access to interactive technologies, such as tools to encourage audience participation, collaborative communication platforms, and others, are more important now versus the last several years
—47 percent report the importance of flexible meeting space now versus in the past
The survey participants also indicated that technology and space flexibility dominate selection choices.
“Responding meeting planners report that an increasing percentage of budgets are devoted to securing and implementing new technologies, such as event apps, beacon technology to track traffic and attendance, and video conferencing capabilities,” the IACC wrote in the report. “Recent years has been marked by [a] considerable change in the meetings industry in terms of the spaces people want to meet and run conferences and events in. This report highlights a significant awareness across a wide range of stakeholders, to the increased need for delegates to collaborate more and for the delivery of meetings and incorporation of collaborative technologies, to support this change. The focus for venues when considering this need, should not be on the meeting room alone, but on the spaces outside of the meeting room, for networking, socialising, and dining.”
For learn more, please read the report (PDF) by the IACC.
(Image: Helgi Halldórsson/Creative Commons)