MedTech Summit is a flagship annual European regulatory event for the medical device and in vitro diagnostic industry. A 360+ attendee conference running over five days with multiple content streams, it’s a big deal for its delegates, sponsors and organiser Informa Connect.
MedTech has always been a slickly run multi-stream conference, which has successfully navigated the path to a post-COVID hybrid format.
At an event like this, understanding who attends which sessions (and for how long) is critical for stakeholders and sponsors. Scanning has been the go-to solution for as long as anyone can remember.
However, in common with events of a similar nature - where attendee experience is paramount - there has been a significant shift in event KPIs.
Feedback highlighted increasing delegate frustration with the need to be scanned in and out of every session attended.
This friction has become increasingly contentious, yet accurate attendance and dwell time data is required for stakeholders and sponsors.
As forward thinking conference organizers do, the event team wanted to get ahead of the curve and act. It was time to ask: could scanning be replaced with a better solution?
Crowd Connected’s new passive delegate tracking solution - using a smart tag attached to the lanyard of each delegate - was identified as a potential replacement for scanning. As a recently launched solution, it needed validation. And so MedTech Summit was selected as Informa Connect’s pilot.
To test how well Crowd Connected performed in measuring session attendance, a control was needed for comparison against the incumbent solution. Simple: continue with badge scanning.
Scanning may not provide the perfect baseline (afterall, delegates can avoid being scanned), but it does provide a benchmark against which any alternative data capture could be measured. What’s more, it handily evidenced the delegate friction the event team were striving to address.
Ease of deployment: In a matter of three hours a team of two had the entire event footprint covered.
The deployment required fewer than 10 wall-mounted beacons per session space (pictured centre left). Because these battery-powered units combine to form a mesh network, just a single gateway was needed.
The gateway unit required power and ethernet connection, readily available in any number of locations.
A key part of the workflow is pairing each tracking tag with each delegate badge. Crowd Connected’s approach: make this very straightforward. A simple double scan of the badge and tag (pre-attached to the lanyard) is all that’s required.
Once complete, each delegate’s attendance at the specified places was recorded for the duration of the event, without the need for scanning or any other action.
It demonstrated to Informa Connect that passive tracking could deliver the same outputs as physical scanning, but without the associated hassle and friction.
Over 7,000 lines of data were delivered in a timely fashion in line with client requirements, showing delegate IDs in attendance with individual dwell times.
A decision was quickly made to roll out the technology to other Informa Connect events.
In this case, the event team would have saved more than 240 staff hours, equivalent to 2x staff at 3x entrances over 5x 8-hr days.
“Credit to the organisers for trying something new. Let’s be honest about it, scanning is not a great experience!”
“I have no problem with wearing a tracking tag if it means at future events I won’t be scanned endlessly.”
“The extra tag was unobtrusive and clearly doing something important.”
“Replacing scanning is something we’re really keen to do – and ideally with a passive solution, given the obvious benefit in terms of delegate experience. But any alternative must meet our requirements in terms of ease of deployment, delegate acceptance, data quality and scalability.
MedTech enabled us to fully assess all aspects of Crowd Connected’s new tag tracking technology, and we were delighted with the results. We have moved quickly to roll out the solution across a number of events.” Meleena Patel, Regional Event Delivery Director
“We chose to pilot Crowd Connected’s new technology because it looked like a really good fit for the pain point we were seeking to address – i.e. the friction that scanning causes. We knew Crowd Connected has a reputation for being a very collaborative technology partner, and that was evident from first engaging with them.
The MedTech deployment proved that replacing scanning with passive tracking at our events is now a reality. It reliably delivers the attendance and dwell data we need. Exactly the outcome we wanted.” Josh Sinclair, Head of Technology Transformation
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