In the post-COVID world of events, attendees get to have their cake and eat it too. A recent survey from Government Executive's Market Connections showed that in-person attendance is rising while online attendance is staying steady. In this latest study, over half of respondents said they had attended one to three in-person events over the past year. Three in 10 respondents have participated in four to six webinars per year. These numbers mirror what we found in surveying our members late last year.
With public health concerns largely gone, there are new decision points as to what makes an event worth attending.Continue reading →
As with other networking and professional development events, job fairs are also transitioning back to their in-person form, but not without changes. The beauty of a job fair is the convenience and efficiency for recruiters and job seekers alike - a place to meet possible matches all in one location. When pandemic restrictions moved events online, the convenience grew as people did not need to leave their house, but efficiency gains were not always realized. Just as the workforce is now hybrid, so too is the job seeking environment.
Virtual Job Fairs Mirror Virtual Work
Virtual job fairs are here to stay because of the convenience, time savings, and their ability to facilitate geographically inconvenient meetings. With more companies hiring a hybrid workforce, location is not as important-you could be in Washington, DC interviewing for a job in Austin, TX or vice versa. Many people have found they prefer remote work to in-office positions and those people will also look for virtual opportunities for networking.Continue reading →
I recently had the pleasure of participating in a virtual panel discussion organized by Government Marketing University titled, "Fusing Government and Industry: Event Go or No Go." The webinar looked at the current reality of in-person event planning and attendance using research findings as well as anecdotal observations and experiences.
Market Connections conducted a survey of government event attendees in January to get a pulse on their appetite for attending face-to-face (F2F) events. The findings of this research echoed the responses we received to our most recent survey. People are slowly but surely reintroducing in-person events into their schedules and planning. The latest survey found 40% of respondents plan to attend at least one in-person event in 2022. This is a considerable jump from the 25% that reported attending a 2021 event.Continue reading →
FirstNet is a nationwide wireless broadband network for first responders being built and deployed through a first of its kind public-private partnership. FirstNet was borne out of the September 11, 2001 tragedy where it became clear that the radio systems police, fire, and paramedics relied on did not easily operate across agencies. First responders also could not rely on land and mobile phone lines as they were overwhelmed by a high volume of calls. The 2004 9/11 commission report cited this lack of connectivity as a fundamental problem for first responders and pushed for solutions to be developed quickly to support everyday public safety activities as well as response to catastrophes.
The development of FirstNet began in 2012 when the First Responder Network Authority was established and a law was put in place that allocated 20 megahertz of spectrum and $7 billion to establish a broadband network dedicated to the nation's first responders. FirstNet was launched in 2018.
As we begin to slide into the last quarter of the year and start planning for 2020, the human inclination is to go bigger and better next year. But, we would challenge you to look at how going smaller can actually lead to a greater impact. Smaller events can deliver the same learning as a large event, however do it in a way that enables event organizers to get closer to attendees as well as a different way for attendees to interact with the content and with each other.
For context, we would define a small event as somewhere around 20-50 people. With this size, attendees have an opportunity to get to know one another and the presenters on a deeper level. This is helpful when you're looking to build better customer intimacy or when you are looking to gather feedback. A small group allows for more interaction and questions, so organizers can take advantage of the opportunity and build in plenty of time for Q&A. Attendees can get the lecture experience at any event, so set your event apart with increased access to and interaction with speakers and thought leaders.