The CWT Meetings & Events agency predicts compliance will remain top of the trends agenda for next year.
The agency draws the conclusion from its 2015 Meetings & Events Forecast research.
The new research puts compliance as the number one concern for companies consolidating their programmes and seeking additional transparency across multiple geographies, the agency says.
New compliance regulations in the pharmaceutical industry in 2015, including the Sunshine Act in the US, will mean significant impact on regulation in the sector.
Floyd Widener, Senior Vice-President, CWT Meetings & Events worldwide, said: “This is the third edition of our meetings and events forecast, and it’s interesting to see the renewed focus on compliance in our industry.”
The report’s recommendations include trying hybrid events to save costs and involve remote employees unable to participate in person, basing events in-country or in-region to minimise costs, carbon footprint and delegate travel times, and working with an agency with strong industry relationships to get the best deals and supplier terms.
Weidener added that CWT M&E anticipated the use of technology in events to hit an all-time high in 2015.
“Solutions that enhance the delegate experience by enabling online registration and booking while capturing budget information are fast-becoming an essential tool in meeting planners’ arsenal,” he said.
“By providing consolidated, centralized data, end-to-end event management is enabled; a key focus of 2015 in an industry where compliance is king.”
Tips from CWT M&E, stemming from the new research, include advice to go beyond sleeping rooms and meeting space and negotiate on total spend. Include food and beverage, AV support and miscellaneous charges, the agency advises planners.
In terms of managing shorter lead times, the advice is to engage with procurement teams for a more strategic approach to negotiations when time is not on your side for lengthy negotiations. Combining total meetings and transient travel spend will also give greater buying power when looking to drive down costs.
The agency also urges clients to make the most of the trend towards shorter meetings to create a more efficient agenda that starts earlier in the day, reduces total meeting time and, in turn, reduces overall cost.
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