The NOEA conference returned for 2021 with a day of virtual panel discussions and debates and we tuned in to hear what the experts have found out since the pandemic began, and what their thoughts are for the future of the live events industry.
Key takeaways from the day:
- Strong focus on events being a place for people to “escape the pandemic”
- Collaboration has been key in keeping the sector going during such a turbulent time
- Covid has provided the events industry with a “voice” in Government thanks to consistent lobbying and influence from across the sector
- Visitor behaviour has changed drastically during the last year
- Events sector has been “resilient” and have therefore shown that as an industry, it has the ability to be “agile and flexible” when faced with new challenges
- New opportunities and ways of working have opened up during the pandemic
- Consumers are versatile and are happy to accept the “new norm” if it means getting back to the live events sector
- Events industry crucial part of our local and national economy
- A better understanding in Government now that the live events sector plays a key part in encouraging investment to the UK and without it, we would be a “poorer country”
Key challenges for the events sector in 2022:
- Supply chain delays now that the world is reopening
- Labour shortages in hospitality and events sector
- Sourcing drivers and experienced crew members
- Availability of security at events
- Martyn’s Law may be on the horizon and would require venues to carry out “airport style searches”
- Educating young people that a job in events and/or hospitality is a viable, long-term career choice
- Shortage of venues as postponed events start up again
- More stringent laws on licensing at events
- Reassuring the public that the event is Covid safe and looking after their best interests
Is the Industry Ready to #BuildBackBetter?
Liz Madden, Director at NoNonsense Group provided us with this statement:
“We’ve found new ways to do what we love. We never lost momentum. One thing we learnt was that collaboration is an absolute must and people were talking much more than usual to get over the hurdles.
“The world is open. Demand may outstrip supply, but we will adapt and do what needs to be done to make things work. We can’t be complacent, but we know everything that it takes to put on a successful event now. People have found new ways to embrace legislations and new desires from the public during Covid and we can overcome and get around them.
“There’s many success stories coming out now, we’ve learnt from things and realise we can do better. People have had 18 months to sit back and reinvent their business; we’ve realised that as we come back, we want to do better and deliver memorable events that will be impregnated in people’s memories for years to come. They may be very different than before, but we will enjoy it more because we’ve missed it so much.
“It’s not going to be easy, there will be challenges, but we are going to build back better. In times of uncertainty, we have learned that we will succeed.”
For more information on NOEA and to keep up-to-date with all the latest news from across the events sector, visit the website.