At this year’s ACCED-I 34th Annual Conference, a group of collegiate conference and events professionals from across the U.S. met in New Orleans, Louisiana to talk about how they can – in accordance with the “unmask potential” conference theme – uncover new ways of accomplishing their objectives.
As stated on their website, the Association of Collegiate Conference and Events Directors-International (ACCED-I) promotes and advances the collegiate conference and events profession and sets the industry standards of excellence. The conference offers an opportunity for campus professionals to attend educational sessions, learn about new products and services at the expo, network, exchange ideas, and recognize stand-out professionals in an awards ceremony.
Besides enjoying New Orleans’ trademark beignets, the crowd seemed to appreciate the wide variety of sessions they could attend, with subjects ranging from risk management to higher education event management and room scheduling technology. By just glancing through the program, it’s clear that collegiate conference and events professionals face a growing number of issues in their business.
An emphasis on centralization
Centralized event management and scheduling was a very important topic for this crowd. Event and conference management is tricky enough, but there are extra complexities when you add in a campus with many event venues and stakeholders from students to presidents and provosts.
Some of the presentations that covered the topic of scheduling spoke specifically about how important it is to have a centralized event software that is about more than booking space. The general synopsis was that the ideal system was able to unite departments, manage details from speakers to financials to catering, and report back information so new opportunities and revenue streams could be identified.
Case studies show a centralized approach to higher education conference and event management
During the exhibition portion of the event, I was able to share a few case studies with college event professionals that proved how universities were currently finding success with a centralized event strategy.
One example is Duke University. With the right event and venue management software package, Duke was able to implement a widespread, highly adopted strategy that helped centralize budgets and booking, enabled self-scheduling, and promoted collaboration among departments. Head here to check out the full Duke University case study.
In another example, Marquette University made great strides toward total campus integration by implementing software that streamlined event and academic classroom scheduling, increased efficiency, improved space utilization, lowered costs, and more. You can access the Marquette University case study here.