The event staffing crisis is real...
Things are looking a little bit different in the calendar these days. Event managers who were waiting weeks while events were rescheduled over the winter are now seeing 1, 2, 3, events taking place on the same day. The change of pace is fast and furious, with all hands on deck. Despite the buzz of activity, it’s impossible to notice that there are fewer hands involved than before the pandemic. The event staffing crisis has received increasing attention as of late, but few solutions when it comes to replacing talent and skills lost. Some figures estimate that 40% of event professionals changed careers during the corona crisis, with many leaving the industry altogether. Career changes are not the only factor contributing to the crunch for professional event technicians. Increased digitalization, hybrid events and hygiene compliance also create new demands for talent.
Thankfully, event professionals are concerned, but undeterred. When producing live events, one gets comfortable with uncertainty. Schedule changes, managing missing keynote speakers, or locating a lost minibus of attendees are carefully handled, ideally with participants being none the wiser. The corona pandemic has been an incredible test. But despite the difficulty, we will weather this crisis too. It’s another opportunity for event producers to get creative.
Here’s what I’ve been catching up on this week:
The Event Industry:
- Ärmel hoch: Messewirtschaft bereit für Frühlingsgefühle [Event Manager] The German event industry was one of the few countries to take a bigger financial hit from the pandemic in 2021 compared to 2020. Despite renewed confidence, the industry continues to feel the impact in 2022, as jobs and skills loss of event professionals prevents the industry from bouncing back. Similarly, industry associations are calling on the government for increased relief and support during this time, as events outside the country have reopened at an increasing pace, worrying organizers that their exhibitors, sponsors and participants will go elsewhere.
- Dienstleister: Neustart nach Corona-Einschränkungen: Veranstaltungsbranche trotz guter Auftragslage in Not [Handelsblatt] Event companies across Europe and Germany face a critical time as many talented and experienced event professionals have left the industry during the crisis. Organizers are feeling the impact of the staffing crunch, as winter’s rescheduled events begin to crowd the event calendar.
- Strained Supply Chain Wreaks Havoc on Events [EventMB] Current supply chain bottlenecks in the global shipping industry have had a pronounced impact on the events industry, raising prices, and extending timelines for equipment and supplies. Further complicated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, event suppliers and their exhibitors are facing higher freight costs and distribution delays– in some cases calling trade fair participation into question.
- Keine Zugangsbeschränkungen mehr bei Messen [AUMA] All Restrictions for trade fairs and exhibitions have ended in Germany as of Apr 3, 2022. With the exception of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, no longer are trade fairs required to have 3G or 2G regulations, capacity restrictions or distance requirements. State parliaments of Hamburg and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern have retained mask requirements for now.
- Are business trips a thing of the past? [DW] While “Digital meetings can’t replace everything,” for some producers, airlines and travel providers are curtailing flight routes and business seating for long haul routes. This has raised flying costs and left some trade fairs and event organizers concerned about visitor numbers for upcoming summer shows.
- Experience landscape shifts in line with consumer mindsets [Campaign Live] Event organizers in the UK and across Europe are experiencing a “seismic shift” back to in-person events as the spring events season returns in full swing. A recent industry survey finds brands have a continued appetite for digital and virtual experiences even as physical events return.
- Allseated raises $15M to expand beyond event visualizations into corporate metaverses [TechCrunch] Event visualization and management platform Allseated has raised a new round of funding to expand their offering from hosting events to hosting workspaces. Allseated’s ExVo platform and the company’s digital twins of live venues have already been a hit for event organizers.
- Art Düsseldorf Is Launching a Digital Docent Service So That Collectors Can Tour the Fair From Anywhere [Artnet] A different type of hybrid event, this one facilitated by on-site digital guides helping to navigate off-site visitors around an in-person physical exhibition space. This offering by Art Düsseldorf is a great way to make your event more inclusive and create a more personalized experience for your visitors who may be joining offsite.
- Events und das Metaverse – das Beste aus zwei Welten? [Meedia] Fascinating interview with Colja Dams of Vok Dams about the role of the metaverse and the future of events. It is their position that increasing digitalization will continue to grow and accelerate and that the metaverse will remain an important future landscape for events and business going forward. Colja Dams demonstrates what setups organizers should be considering for hybrid event production, by using green screens and immersive experience design that has the opportunity to open up completely new markets and possibilities for attendees. He provides a lot of different examples of why he thinks event organizers should already be in the metaverse– do you agree?
How to do it:
- Comparing carbon calculators for your events [PIRATEx] As events return in person, questions about sustainability become even more important. However, calculating the impact of your events, especially physical events, is far from straightforward. Here, we’ve examined several different alternative carbon calculation options that you might want to try for your events to lower your impact.
- Take a Walk on the Wild Side with Avatars [Zoom Blog] Remember the viral story of the lawyer and the kitten filter? Well in case you’d like to show up to your next Zoom call as a cat (or a rabbit or any number of animals) on purpose– Zoom has rolled out a new avatars feature for Zoom Meetings and Webinars. It’s a fun way to engage your virtual event participants and lighten up the mood during those regular hybrid work meetings.
Case Study – Learnings from Germany’s Expo 2020 Pavillion:
Last week Dubai’s Expo 2020 Exhibition ended with a bang (and a lot of fireworks). The exhibition, delayed due to Covid, welcomed over 23 million visitors over its run and aimed to make a commitment to sustainability, with 80% of the constructions remaining after the Expo. One of the standouts was Germany’s pavilion, creatively designed by Cologne’s facts and fiction agency, and rated one of the best of the show. The pavilion stood out for its emphasis on the immersive visitor experience, which transformed and tailored itself for each user’s preferences through sensor technology.
- Why Germany’s pavilion is one of the most talked about at Expo 2020 Dubai [The National] How to become one of the most popular attractions at an expo the size of a small country? Well you put your visitors’ names in lights. Literally. At the German pavilion, attendees are moved by the efforts designers have made to give each experience a personal touch, by putting their names on the walls as they navigate the space.
- German pavilion focuses on everyday moments [MEED] Dietmar Schmitz, commissioner-general of the German pavilion shares his takeaways from the pavilion experience and his last outing as a show designer.
- The German Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai – Trailer
That’s all for this edition of The Lookout! If you’re looking for some more great content, don’t miss the PIRATEx Event Resources Hub. If you’d like to be featured here, just reach out!
In the meantime, let’s stay connected if we’re not already on Linkedin or follow the PIRATEx team on Twitter. If there’s anything you would like to read about when it comes to online, or digital events, let me know! I’d love to hear your comments and suggestions.
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See you after the Easter holiday!
The Lookout Newsletter #59
PIRATEx Managing Director