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Current Trends in Meeting Rooms

January 13, 2022

The year 2021 was a challenging one for all conference centres and meeting rooms venues worldwide. Thankfully to technology, we were able to adapt and conquer the stresses of the ongoing pandemic and carry-on hosting conferences in our professional, safe training venues across London. With inclusiveness at heart, we understood that attendees will become more cautious about the safety of their travel and physical participation in workshop spaces, therefore hybrid and virtual events would become the primary tool for many organisations.

Meeting rooms to hybrid events

Traditionally, in-person meetings were at the centre of any event planning, with cameras and virtual attendance being an afterthought due to circumstances. The adaptation to the world we live in now means hybrid and virtual events will become the priority and first option when planning your next event. Ultimately this seems to be the most successful option as this means cancellations, whether COVID-related or otherwise, will be less likely. Judging by how life progresses, the in-person meeting room component may become just another add-on.

 

meeting rooms, workshop spaces, training venues

Conference Centres sustainability

While we are proud to be able to offer COVID safe meeting room and training venues across all our Cavendish Conference Centres, the question of venue economics comes to play. Strict safety regulations equate to smaller quantity of attendees utilising the same large space.

That decrease in people often can translate to a decrease in revenue which may question its sustainability. Introducing hybrid and virtual conferences alongside the existing in-person meeting room option will increase our flexibility and ensure we are able to cater to any situation and preference of your organisation.

Marketing opportunities with virtual events

Virtual workshop spaces are arguably the most effective marketing approaches. For organisations whose focus and primary revenue source is not the event but its products, taking the virtual approach may offer a much more successful marketing opportunity. If your mindset is viewing your event as an opportunity to market the products and have as many eyes present to see it, as opposed to a revenue source, going virtual will help present your products to the whole world, not just the event attendees – guaranteeing a larger increase of potential customers.

 

meeting rooms, training venues

Demand for meeting rooms conferences

Despite the many positives of going virtual or hybrid, many planners and clients still prefer the traditional face to face meeting room facilities. To find the best middle ground of organising physical workshop spaces whilst maintaining within the safety regulations our world must comply to, introducing hybrid elements to meetings inside conference centres may be the best way to execute the most successful events whilst complying to all regulations and preferences.

For many organisations, hybrid events have opened new opportunities and strategies of how much they can achieve and execute whilst reaching out to larger audiences, all whilst creating communication between everyone a lot more convenient. In theory, this development within the conference world will remain with every company to some extent even once the pandemic passes, due to its convenience to connect.

The issue organisations have with virtual and hybrid meetings is the less obvious ways in which they will have to incorporate those who aren’t participating in person into the meeting, so they are able to connect with their colleagues. There seems to already be a strong demand from clients and attendees to return to physical meeting room events, as professional relations and work efficiency may be at risk.

Teambuilding

There has very likely never been a greater need than during this pandemic for teambuilding programming. After many months of officing out of the home and connecting with colleagues and clients virtually, there is a need to come together, rebuild the team and rekindle the team spirit. The need to do so outside, given the times, is ideal for teambuilding and these are some of the programs being actively requested: Orvis Fly Fishing, Land Rover Driving School, falconry, hiking, golf, scavenger hunts, mixology courses, coconut bowling. Anything that will offer the team a chance to unwind, reconnect, share and gain courage during this isolating time.

Contactless!

Rapidly becoming the new standard in hospitality, contactless technology introduced for safety regulations will outlive the pandemic. It has become the expectation of planners and meeting guests at conference centres, facilitated by smart phone capabilities at check in and check out. From arrival to entering the guest room to conference registration and meeting room agendas to conference services and dining with virtual menus for ordering breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks or room service, contactless technology is here to stay!

Mealtime reimagined

Here at Cavendish Conference Centres, we now offer contactless menus, attended buffets and individually packaged menu selections. In addition to sealed fresh food selections and snacks, may be accompanied by bottled water, face masks and hand sanitizers at the ready. A strong preference remains for served meals, or modified buffets with individually packaged selections, and culinary staff-served hot and cold choices all within safety regulations.

Given the current environment, properties are accommodating meeting guests in any way they can – tailoring to individual customer preferences, which may also include bento box meals and drop-off catering in guest rooms. Eco sensitive as ever, individually packaged meals are presented in curated eco-friendly containers and sanitisation of the training venues are in operation all throughout the day.

Meeting rooms are back!

The road to recovery for the meeting industry is filled with questions and unknowns. Collaboration across all aspects of meeting and event planning and management will be required to bring people back together. Whether physical, virtual or hybrid this unpredictable time has brought about many developments and innovation into our conference centres world, creating our environment a safer, more professional space for all events.

Since the pandemic began, the industry is expressing optimism for the first time, vaccines are being administered to increasing segments of the population, raising optimism for a meetings industry comeback.

In 2022 we are seeing a trend of senior leadership teams looking to reconnect with their teams, and the best, safest way they can do that is through takeovers of small venues, hotels and conference centres.

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