What Is Event Management Software
The quick read summary...
An event management system should help you deliver your event, including registration, with manual and automatic bookings, accurate attendance numbers for you to order resouces and collect feedback post event. There is a difference between event management software and an appointment system and it is important to know the difference.
At its most basic, an event management system allows you to register attendees for an event. This allows your potential audience to apply for tickets, turn up knowing that they are expected and for an organiser to know how many people have booked. Most programmers can program these basic features and build them into a website to take bookings but a truely dedicated event booking system can be so much more. For example, it can help the organisers produce such fantastic events that it's worth looking for a piece of software that will address your needs that you didn't realise you had.
An event management system will include a variety of options which you can choose to help you manage your events successfully. For example, some systems will enable you to take bookings online and telephone, the data analysis from the feedback questionnaire will enable you to develop stunning events or a check-in desk facility to make your event as Covid-19 safe as possible. There are many suppliers out there and you need to find the one that you feel comfortable with and will provide you with the best option for your business. Take your time as I've heard of unsuccessful suppliers being approached after it was discovered that the chosen one could not deliver!
What's the difference between an event management system and an appointment system?
And why is it important? An event booking system reserves a space for one person, or more people, to attend an event, taking place at a specific time, which has many places available.
An appointment booking system allows a service to be booked for a specific time and place. It usually involves one person booking a time slot for one activity, for a hairdresser or a table in a restaurant where many similar time slots are available.
Investing in an event registration system when you need an appointment booking tool would mean that you could only book people for one table/hair appointment/lunch at a time. And the other way round means the ability to book only one person for a meeting/webinar/exhibition/event. It is quite common to mix these two up and being able to differentiate between them means that you'll save time in your search.
Why have an event registration system?
What do event registration systems do for you? If I can change the question around and ask, if you didn't have a registration system, how would you know:
- if anyone will turn up
- the quantity of goodie bags or other resources to buy
- if the venue is suitable for your numbers of attendees
- the caterers will have enough drinks and food for your audience
- that you won't waste anything
- the names of any of your delegates
- the emergency contact details in case your event has to be postponed or moved
These days, it's pretty unusual to run an event and not use an event management system to register your attendees and if you are choosing one for the first time, you do need to think carefully about your event to draw up a list of 'must haves' and 'would likes' when choosing a registration system. What is suitable for one of your events may not be suitable for all of them, so bear in mind what's common and essential to all your events and base your lists on these findings.
What do you do now?
By the end of this, you should be clear that an events management system is not an appointments system and although you can get a programmer to sort you out something that can be used on your website, the database that comes out of it won't be that sophisticated. To get something that will be worth your investment, look at getting a dedicated event management system that will help you develop as an event prof. A good system will provide you with a great data set that will be really useful for planning your future events.
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