Teneo Hospitality Group, representing more than 300 hotels, resorts and destination management companies across the globe, released information last week taken from a poll of meeting planners who shared their biggest concerns.
With several relating to technology, here are the key issues that seem to be top of mind:
As Wi-Fi becomes critical to run today’s meetings, planners are concerned about high prices and difficulty negotiating rates, especially as the costs are often passed onto smaller businesses, associations and exhibitors, which in turn can affect attendance.
Reliability of audiovisual equipment is becoming an increasing problem, with interference from outside the venue sometimes compromising bandwidth as much as 25 percent. As such, both costs and technical quality are a challenge for planners and venues.
With more devices comes the need for more plug-in power sources. The demand for outlets goes beyond the hotel guest room or meeting space and includes lobbies, bars, dining rooms, gyms and lounges.
Meeting planners report an increase in dietary requests due to allergies, diet fads and religious restrictions. As attendees become more diverse, dietary requirements are expected to increase, making planning food and beverage much more of a headache than it once was.
Consistency of service remains an issue, especially as more hotel companies merge together. Oftentimes, planners find inconsistencies across hotel brands, which includes everything from cost, to service, to even the meeting venues themselves, making it difficult for planners to find a reliable partner.
It was only a matter of time that more technology would equate to more security breaches. The problem has become so bad that the European Union put the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into effect on May 25. The regulation applies to any organization that processes and stores data, which means planners must have a more in-depth knowledge of technology to understand exactly how to protect the data they have acquired.