Feb 26, 2014 Of Note and New: Event Planning Tech Trends
For this week’s entry, we spent some time with our Associate Producer Tim Landherr discussing some of the challenges that he faces in his event support role and how he has been taking advantage of technology trends to meet these demands.
What are some of the biggest technological challenges you face as an Associate Event Producer here at Wilsonwest?
The biggest challenge I see is with registration software technology. There are a lot of great tools out there but there isn’t one system that fits all types and sizes of events. One of my biggest issues is the lack of user field functionality that doesn’t require special programming. I’d like the ability to customize the registration system easily and quickly to accommodate the unique data needs of each event. The other challenge we face is then not being able to run specialized reporting on those custom user fields once created. I would love to see a system that is very flexible and easily customizable both in the input and export of data.
What are some technology trends that are currently being evaluated for use here at Wilsonwest?
I would like to more fully utilize the onsite registration functionality of the registration system tools that we use. As we approach each event on its own terms, we carefully match the right tools with the project. The result is a toolbox full of many options, all of which are constantly under development. Of course this means that we need to stay educated in how the changes affect us, the users, as well as the event attendees who see the front end of these systems. Self check-in is a trend that has more or less become common practice. Not all of our events fit that profile, but it is important to evaluate how something like that can be translated to say an executive level event and is a big part of the corporate event planning process. The visible use of current if not cutting-edge technology is a big part of maintaining relevancy.
What recent technology tools do you find your self using most often in your role here at Wilsonwest?
I really like using the venue RFP tool that Cvent has created. It is really easy to use and you can reach out to a lot of properties across the country in your initial venue search to both check on availability and receive rate quotes. It’s a great time-saver and keeps all of the proposals received neatly organized and easily accessible. For keeping notes and specs on all the events I work on, I find that Evernote is an excellent tool. You can create a notebook for each event and keep running notes that you can easily reference at any time without having to flip through all the scrap paper on your desk. You can also attach documents and photos to each note. I have the app on my laptop, tablet and smartphone as they are all synced. A new tool that I’ve been using for keeping track of tasks is Azendoo. It’s an easy tool that allows you to create subjects (events) and then create tasks within each of those subjects. You can add notes to the task and assign a due date and then either see all the tasks you need to do just for that event or you can view all the tasks you have for all the subjects you have active. You can also create teams with your co-workers and you can assign tasks to others in your team. I’m just beginning to use this and I really like it so far.