The Top 10 Challenges Facing Event Planners

Event professionals are being asked to do more, but they’re not all getting the resources they need to improve their process in a real way. When it came to the biggest event planning challenges facing us, we asked: “What’s the biggest change you’ve seen since you started working in our industry?”

In Social Tables’ latest trend report, 35% of planners we surveyed told us that the arrival of event technology has made the most noticeable impact on the industry. It’s made it possible for modern meeting planners to go beyond just making phone calls to venues and A/V companies.

Today’s meeting and event professionals have a more versatile skill set, and that’s made possible by event tech. But it’s also one of the biggest hurdles facing planners today.

event planning challenges

35% of surveyed planners indicated that the arrival of event technology has made the biggest impact on our industry. Space planning software is really coming into its own these days. But some planners still struggle to make the case for the budget behind event tech. 

A full 24% of surveyed planners told us that reduced budgets are going to make their jobs tougher in the next year. Specifically, 12.6% of event planners indicated that they won’t have the budget to upgrade the event tech they rely on or implement the software and hardware they need to grease the wheels.

What are the biggest event planning challenges facing our industry?

1.) Reduced Event Budgets

It’s a reality that far too many event planners are familiar with. Event budget cuts take the cake when it comes to the biggest challenges, year after year.

2.) Budget to Add or Upgrade Technology

An investment worth taking a further look into, upgrading technology can ultimately be an inevitable part of holding tenure as a successful member of the meeting and events community. There’s no affording being left behind as technology continues to develop in our industry.

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3.) Less Money from Sponsors

That moment when you’re banking on a certain dollar amount to come through after a previously successful sponsorship engagement, and it doesn’t. More events might mean more fluctuation when it comes to working with sponsors. Be prepared for some negotiation.

4.) Skills to Keep Up with Technology

Keeping pace with the constantly changing world of technology is something event professionals certainly aren’t immune to. Luckily, many technologies available in the events industry offer sophisticated, timely onboarding classes so you never feel out of the loop. These pieces of software are crucial in reducing problems faced in event management.

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5.) Proving ROI Departmental Cuts

Never the most fun conversations you could conjure up having, but this challenge will always play a pivotal role in boosting efficiency while saving some much-needed dough year after year. This is a great resource to prove (and increase) your event ROI.

6.) Downsizing Rising Travel

Travel costs can be a time (and wallet) suck. Making strategic decisions around annual travel can add massive wiggle room to a budget, and at the same time provide the education your team may need to get to the next level.

event planning challenges

7.) Housing Costs

Depending on your current spending in this category, making adjustments to housing costs can prove to be an astronomical help when moving from event to event. Between renting spaces and housing an event-planning squad for the day-to-day, this event planning challenge is one that’s unavoidable by no one.

8.) Lack of Buy-in from Top Executives

No matter how great that next idea of yours is, you’re still going to need some additional buy-in. A challenge facing event planners of all shapes and sizes, convincing those individuals who are in control of budget can always be a pandora’s box of uncertainty.

challenges in event planning

9.) Event Security

Ironing out the best ways to execute an appropriate level of event security should be a top of mind aspect to any event. The challenge remains, what degree of security is needed on an event to event basis?

10.) Increased Government Regulation

Alas, the item on our list that is the farthest from our control. Event professionals nationwide can end-up at the mercy of governmental regulations that can either hinder or help the efficiency behind putting on a great event.

How does our list line-up with challenges facing event planners you’re aware of? Let us know on Twitter @socialtables.

If you saw a running theme in this post, it might be most challenges facing event planners include the budget. You might very well run into some questions when it comes to putting together your ideal events budget.

Take a look at our most recent ebook and get that events budget you’ve always dreamed of!

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