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Conferences

Whether you need to hold a small meeting or a gathering for thousands, Australia has the spaces to accommodate your plans.

In Australia we are famous for organising and creating fabulous and creative events in the most spectacular of settings.

You can host a dinner for hundreds of delegates on the beach in the magical Whitsundays, or even on a pontoon out on the Great Barrier Reef. You could have as backdrop to your presentation the awesome site of Uluru (Ayers Rock) and the million star sky of the outback.

If you're looking for the ultimate in team building atmosphere, we've got it, along with the power to take your breath away with just what we can achieve for your business event.

There is no better incentive for your staff than an Australian holiday, so when signing off on the next conference booking be sure to ask your organisers if they have considered Australia.

TOP 5 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN ORGANISING A CONFERENCE

by Doreen Brown... PR Works

The devil is in the details, so if you want to orchestrate the perfect conference your life will be all about details.  Selecting the right venue for the right time, ensuring it has the right amenities, spatial configuration, and access to sightseeing or entertainment are critical elements of a well-planned event.  With these considerations in mind you will be able to draw enthusiastic attendees from far and wide.  

1) Location, location, location!

People often travel to attend a conference, so you must evaluate accessibility of your selected venue.  Proximity to the airport and availability of shuttles or public transit is critical.  If attendees are left to plan their own commute it may drive up costs and limit the ability of people to attend.   There is more to location than getting to and from, so put yourself in the place of your guest and anticipate their needs.  If meals are not part of your event, have you chosen a venue that offers easy access to a variety of dining options that are easily accessible?  What about access to dry cleaning or shops where forgotten sundries can be purchased after business hours?  When you are able to anticipate the needs of conference attendees, you are on the way to ensuring a successful event.  

2) Timing is everything…

As you plan your event, set up a reasonable time frame that allows attendees to hear about the conference, register, and make necessary travel arrangements.  This is particularly important when booking flights well in advance to avoid increased expense of booking too close to the event date.  Early planning will help you avoid finding that the venue you wanted for your conference is already booked.   If your conference involves a call for presenters, give yourself enough of a window to receive and review submissions, respond with notification to accepted presenters, and still allow enough time to make flight or hotel bookings and other essential arrangements.   A final timing issue is to ensure your conference does not coincide with other large events, parades, or holidays that will result in large crowds infusing limited spaces or result in the closure of businesses that you might need to support your event.  

3) Home court advantage…

Your success as an organiser is contingent on the success of your presenters.  Their ability to create engaging content hinges on the accessibility to amenities, and creates a home court advantage.  For example, will attendees have easy access to a business center equipped with copy and finishing services, computers and internet access, fax and shipping service?  What hours will these services be available?  Ideally you should have twenty-four hour access to business services because last minute needs always arise.   Once your behind the scenes needs have been met, you must turn attention to the front lines.  Presentation rooms should have at least basic audiovisual set up including computers, projection, screen, podium and microphone.  In addition, it is equally critical that tech support is on hand to help troubleshoot so presentations are seamless.    

4) Functional space…

Depending on the types of events you will have at your conference you must consider the function and accessibility of your space.  For example, will all events be handicap accessible?  Will all events be held on site and if not, will there be shuttles or other simple transit solutions?   Space for your events must suit the situation.  If you intend to have keynote speakers you need a large space such as a ballroom to accommodate everyone comfortably.  Size of the ballroom will hinge on whether you are seeking theatre style seating or a full-blown luncheon.  It is important that space accommodates correct capacity so that whatever the seating arrangement it will not feel overly crowded, or like a giant cavern with too much empty room.   In addition to your main events, you will want to ensure your selected venue has break out rooms for smaller sessions, and even conference rooms where meetings and networking can take place.  

5) Entertainment…

Even though your conference will most likely run on a very busy schedule, it is important to offer attendees a range of options for downtime.   Does your selected venue have a knowledgeable concierge on premises to help direct guests?  Perhaps in advance of your event you can work with the concierge to come up with a printed list of sightseeing opportunities to be left in guest rooms prior to arrival.   Effort always shows!  When you take time to consider the needs of your conference attendees in advance of the event, a little will go a very long way to ensure success.  Selecting the right venue for the right time, ensuring it has the right amenities, spatial configuration, and access to sightseeing will leave your attendees anticipating your next event with excitement and enthusiasm!