Events are complex, and the information that event planners need to collect and have at their fingertips is equally complex. When we first started looking at providing a set of tools for event planners, we were thinking about tools that would serve a particular purpose. The more we looked into it, the more we came to realize that to be really useful, the tools need to fit into an overall system that provides structure for the event. This resulted in the initial post to the Meeting Planner Toolkit blog about using Google Sites as an event project management system. Since then we have looked into such a project in more detail, and we realized that there is really something very interesting here. It was then that we conceived of using Google Sites to build an Event Communications Center.
The idea behind the Event Communications Center (ECC) is a single place to store, share and collaborate on the event. It is a place where the core team can access the bulk of the event information, but also share it with third party vendors, hotels and venues as appropriate. It is also a place where individual software applications can be used to automate aspects of the event processes.
We decided that the best way to explain what we mean is to create a demonstration ECC so you, the professional event planner can see how it will can all fit together. The platform we will be using for the ECC is Google Apps, where a Google Site provides the structure for the Event, and Google Docs provide the various information resources. Initially the ECC will be fairly simple. Our hope is that over time we can get feedback from Event Planners such as yourself, and can add to the ECC information and tools that will help you be more productive, and your event be more successful.
Stay tuned for the actual launch of the ECC demonstration site. This is a community driven project, and we look forward to your ideas, suggestions and feedback. If you want to use this as a template for your own project, feel free to do so. If you would like more information, or help setting up ECC for your events, feel free to contact us for a free consultation.