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VEI

Venues and Events International encourages eventprof talent back

Venues and Events International has partnered with iElive, Off Limits, Insight Presentation Systems and GOTO Events to remind those who left the industry what they are missing and what they will gain if they return.

Anita Lowe, CEO of Venues and Events International, commented: "We have seen a huge influx in enquiries since the easing of restrictions, which is increasing week-on-week. To manage the significant business increase, we have made several new appointments within our venue find and events team in recent months. But we are not receiving the number of applications we would have received during pre-pandemic recruitment."

Martin Stephens, corporate director, Off Limits, supports these findings and said: "We have gone through recruitment, but there isn't the same level of the talent pool from which to select the right people for our roles. Are we still finding amazing people to work with us? Absolutely, but the process to ensure it's the right fit is much harder and longer."

Ian Verge, managing director of Insight Presentation Systems, added: “Our business model relies heavily on skilled freelancers to deliver our events. We use a pool with a wide range of expertise to pull on, depending on the event type we are delivering. During the pandemic, this pool has shrunk significantly, especially for the skills that lend themselves mostly to live audience events. As the live events business is getting going again, we are now having to be very proactive in getting new people onto our database. We have been fortunate in being able to retain our entire in-house team which is now key."

Mike Bracegirdle, managing director of Jarvis Training Management, said The Chancellor of the Exchequer's Kick Start scheme has provided an opportunity to bring people back into the working environment.

He commented: "Businesses should consider this as an elongated interview or intensive training programme. So, at the end of the scheme, it results in full-time employment or consideration for an apprenticeship programme. The second business grant the Government is currently providing is for apprenticeships. Both schemes come with huge benefits and offer excellent opportunities to get people back into work.”

"These grants won't last forever, so the race is on to start benefiting today and build your businesses back by funding from the government. Many big players are taking advantage, so I would encourage smaller agencies and hotels operating in the meetings and events industry to follow suit if they haven't done so already. All these schemes have a shelf life, just like furlough, so companies need to take advantage now."

As in-person events return, Steve Perkins, managing director of GOTO Events and Beattie Barrick, account manager at iElive, has noticed the buzz of the industry. 

Perkins said: "The enthusiasm and thrill of getting people back together are invigorating us to do what we do best, deliver amazing and memorable experiences for our clients."

Barrick concluded: "Our busy calendar of events has enabled us to get some of our original freelancers in, who immediately got back into the swing of things and as always, created a great team experience on site."