At check-in, we welcome event attendees, which is their first personal contact with the organizer. We have to take care of the first impression – check-in influences the perception of the whole event in a direct and immediate way. I am going to dedicate this entry to the solutions that ensure making the best first impression on the attendees of your event.
Image and Proper Branding
It is true that your image is largely dependent on the budget at your disposal. However, limited resources do not necessarily render simple but effective solutions impossible to employ. For example, if you are unable to provide high quality furniture, you can use standard counters covered with fabric of uniform color. And the other way around: if you are not limited by your budget, it is worth making sure that all furniture features the organizer's branding.
If the event check-in area is supposed to handle attendees divided into categories or by last name initials, you need to provide appropriate marking of reception desks. If possible, arrange them in such a manner that attendees can migrate between them without disturbing one another.
Now, if you are organizing a big event, it is a good idea to have the so-called side reception area, i.e. when reception counters are arranged in such a way that aisles are created in the zone in front of and behind the reception area. If such a model of a reception area is applied, it resembles passport control areas at airports, where the model is used to provide the necessary passenger throughput and easy traffic management. In case of line reception (reception counters arranged in a single line), use posts with barrier tapes.
Instructed Reception Personnel
The proper preparation of reception personnel first and foremost consists in making sure they know event programme and have a sense of direction at the venue. It is unacceptable for such personnel to be unable to answer questions about the location of a cloakroom, restrooms, or a parking lot as they are the ones asked most frequently.
If the work of the reception area is supported by an event management platform, you must remember to make sure that every person is capable of using all of its functions, regardless of how user-friendly the system actually is. In addition to acknowledging attendance, reception areas can be used to hand out conference materials. If that is the case, you should consider assigning two people to each check-in counter. The first person will be responsible for greeting each attendee and recording attendance, while the other will hand them the welcome package.
Sufficient Throughput of the Reception Area
The throughput of a check-in process depends on proper division of reception area and the methodology of their work. The methodology of work is a factor that is not easy to optimize using traditional tools, such as a paper guest list and a pen. And what we usually find helpful is advanced technology, i.e. software that has been designed to make sure that check-in staff will not waste their precious time. This way, it is possible to reduce the number of check-in counters, and, consequently, the costs. Software that facilitates and accelerates the work of the conference reception area should allow you to do the following:
- Identify an event attendee and view the most important personal details;
- Record the attendance of the participant, including information about the time of their arrival;
- Potentially correct attendee details;
- View the events on the attendee's agenda;
- Print the attendee's badge.
Even using the manual search feature to carry out these tasks is a significant boost. However, if you want to take it a step further in terms of identifying attendees and recording attendance, you will have to use software that provides following features:
- creating email messages, passes and/or ID badges with QR codes;
- using a QR code reader to check in attendees or using a mobile check-in app.
This way, your reception desk will operate according to the following scenario:
An attendee arrives on the date of the conference with an already printed entry pass containing a QR code or presents the one sent via email;
When welcoming the guest, the hostess scans the QR code with a reader connected to a notebook running check-in software in the browser;
Then, complete details regarding the attendee are displayed on the screen and they are automatically recorded as present, while the hostess hands them their badge (prepared in advance or printed on the spot).
The entire process takes no longer than 10 seconds, including the time required to locate the ID badge.
However, if you are not using badges or if the pass is also an ID badge, we can reduce the time required to handle a single attendee to several seconds by using CONREGO mobile event check-in app. In this scenario, all you need is a mobile device!
Reception of attendees is one of those processes that can and must be improved on a continuous basis. We've tested a lot of methods in this field and I'm glad that I can share my experience with you.
If you are looking for support at a higher level - not only software, but also hardware and a team that will take care of staff training and smooth attendee service on the day of the event, then know that for a decade, we have been offering a comprehensive service of attendee check-in at the event.