Earlier in 2020, we collaborated with ERMS to release the Event Preparedness and Resilience Survey Report where we interviewed over 160 event professionals, from eleven countries around the world.
We discovered new insights into the industry's preparedness and resilience in today's uncertain world, including growing trends in event risk management.
Here are the top trends:
1. Risk management practice is maturing faster in some industries than others
There is growing interest worldwide in risk management and preparedness, with some industries further along the journey than others. The events industry is lagging behind those with more predictable, measurable environments. However, there is growing awareness that the very uncertainty inherent in high risk, outdoor or multi-venue events must drive change.
2. Smartphone penetration is changing the way we seek information
Increasingly, both attendees and event staff are looking to engage online using their personal mobile devices. As a result, the event software market is booming with other 80,000 companies developing solutions for all areas of event management. Having access to up-to-the-minute information is rapidly becoming an expectation rather than a Wishlist item, particularly among Millennials and Gen Z.
3. Increased awareness of sexual assault in sport and at music festivals is driving change
Many festivals around the world are deploying specifically-trained volunteers and responders around their events, to engage with crowds and encourage supportive, respectful behaviour. Some events have designated safe spaces and reporting phone lines.
4. Cybersecurity and data protection laws are here to stay
The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was implemented in May 2018 and is considered to be the biggest change in privacy laws in the last 20 years. The way event organisers collect, store, share and use people's information has had to evolve quickly to comply with requirements, and this has meant relying heavily on software companies making changes to their products.
5. Workshops are commonplace at industry meetings and conferences
Risk management and health & safety have become a compulsory part of many courses of study in event planning and management. Sessions on security and risk are well-attended and often crowded at conventions - it is common for law enforcement and/or local bodies to have representatives contributing to panels on safety and security.
6. Government and municipal agencies are developing a wide range of free resources
The importance of events to cities and local communities is illustrated by the resources that local and national government bodies are committed to developing materials, training courses, and in access to advisors. In the United States, the Department of Homeland Security offers a range of guides, templates and training on its website, and has advisors and experts available regionally.
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