What's Inside: January 2021
Planning to Succeed
  • By Marie Hunter, Head of IEEE Global Meetings, Conferences and Events
Stay in the Know
  • MMSA and SOW Templates Now Available on the IEEE Legal and Compliance Website
  • IEEE Volunteer Travel Policy in Effect
Organize Like a Pro
  • Budgeting for 2021: Top Tips for Treasurers
Meet the MCE Team
  • Lukrecija Lelong, Sr. Manager, Event Management Services 
Available Resources
  • Conference Education Updates
Planning to Succeed
In 2020 we saw a major shift in how IEEE conferences were held. We also witnessed the strong desire of our communities to remain connected. Our conference organizers have been at the forefront of this transformation. We are all so grateful for their contributions. Together we have persevered in supporting researchers, which has resulted in over 200,000 conference papers being published in IEEE Xplore® in 2020.

Let’s take this opportunity to look ahead and apply what we have learned to this year’s challenges.
Marie Hunter
Head of IEEE Global Meetings, Conferences and Events
Most planners/organizers are going to move forward with a virtual or hybrid event if they cannot hold an in-person event. For most, even if their companies and governments do permit an in-person event, they will plan to have a virtual component this year to accommodate participants who cannot travel making the event “hybrid.” I encourage you to evaluate your conference and be decisive in planning for success. Check out the MCE guide to Going Hybrid.

Here are three things to focus on early in the planning process: TimingTools, and Teams...
Decide early if you will have a virtual or hybrid program. The longer the decision is deferred, the less likely there will be resources available and the less time your organizing team will have to do the proper planning, training, and rehearsing. Build the event from scratch in the format that you plan, incorporating virtual experiences for exhibitors, sponsors, authors, invited speakers, etc.  Imagine new possibilities from the start. This will help you avoid pitfalls and the burden of “re-planning.”
The majority of IEEE events are for groups of 300 persons or less and there are a large variety of platforms available. The tool selected should support your overall objectives, your budget, and the format that you plan for. Will you pre-record all sessions? Will you have exhibitors? Allow enough time to become familiar with the available tools as well as to discover how some of these tools can support marketing, integration, archiving, and the overall experience of your participants. Investigating and contracting for your toolset could take weeks of time. Some that the IEEE community has used successfully can be found on our website. You can use a basic IEEE-provided tool such as Webex, and make great experiences through add-ons, proper facilitation, and integrations. 
Success depends on having a number of key people that are experts in the tools you ultimately select as well as in facilitation. Facilitation requires some soft skills that support the smooth flow of your virtual or hybrid event. Consider roles that align with the needs of your event - someone dedicated to training session chairs, an emergency trouble-shooter, or perhaps a virtual master of ceremonies. Your team is the most important piece of bringing it all together. If hiring an outside provider, understand the number of people and hours they are dedicating to support you.
Want to learn more? Drop us a line. 
Stay in the Know
MMSA and SOW Templates Now Available on the IEEE Legal and Compliance Website
It is now easier than ever to ensure that you have the correct versions of the IEEE Master Management Services Agreement (MMSA) and Scope of Work (SOW) templates. These documents have been relocated to the Contract Template section of the IEEE Legal and Compliance website. You can easily access the templates by logging in with your IEEE Account.
IEEE Volunteer Travel Policy in Effect
This message is included on behalf of IEEE Treasurer, Mary Ellen Randall.

Due to the travel restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the IEEE travel policy remains unchanged from 2020 and is restricted to mission critical travel only. This policy was last communicated/updated by Joe Lillie, 2020 IEEE Treasurer on 26 October 2020.  The intent of this process is to promote safe travel for IEEE Volunteers; therefore, this applies to ALL IEEE VOLUNTEER TRAVEL, including conferences.
As a reminder, the current IEEE travel guidance includes the following:

1. All IEEE Volunteer travel and associated meetings must adhere to all appropriate guidance from cognizant local public health authorities.

2. Given continuing global pandemic risk, only mission critical travel should be conducted at this time.

3. All requests for reimbursable mission critical IEEE volunteer travel must be pre-approved at the IEEE Volunteer OU President/Vice-President level (TAB Vice President, MGA Vice President, PSPB Vice President, EAB Vice President. Awards Board Chair, Standards Board President and the IEEE-USA President).
OU Presidents/Vice-Presidents may delegate this authority to another volunteer, but should ensure that travel is reviewed to ensure that it is critical, necessary, effective and that other alternatives have been considered.

4. Volunteers engaged in mission critical IEEE travel at this time voluntarily elect to participate in the activity with knowledge of the dangers involved, and are agreeing to accept and assume any and all risks of property damage, personal injury, or death associated with IEEE related travel. Volunteers should understand that IEEE will not indemnify them for any health risk or economic or other loss resulting from exposure to COVID-19 during travel.

5. IEEE will not reimburse costs associated with mandatory or self-quarantine or isolation associated with IEEE volunteer travel. If there is a risk of quarantine on entering or departing an area, IEEE volunteers should instead plan to participate virtually using IEEE video and teleconferencing tools.  

6. IEEE continues to provide video-conferencing, tele-conferencing and online meeting facilities to provide alternatives to high-risk travel.

7. Domestic and International rules remain fluid and subject to change. Until further notice, volunteers should take steps to ensure that travel arrangements are flexible and subject to change, credit or refund if plans are disrupted, in accordance with previously issued IEEE guidance.

8. IEEE recommends that If you have any questions, please contact your OU staff business solutions manager or OU volunteer leadership. Further communication will be sent when normal travel plans can be resumed.
Please stay safe and thank you for your assistance and understanding in these difficult times.
Organize Like a Pro
Budgeting for 2021: Top Tips for Treasurers
Budgeting for your 2021 event may involve some uncertainty, but MCE is here to support you and answer your questions along the way. Focused, detailed planning is needed by conference treasurers to keep your 2021 event on track and help you achieve your event goals.

A recent Budgeting for 2021 Webinar for Conference Treasurers offered the following helpful guidance and a checklist for treasurers as a framework for planning.
2021 Budgeting Tips
  • 2020 events show trends of less than 50% of in-person revenue, so consider this when developing your budget.
  • Remember that there will be no pandemic insurance coverage for 2021.
  • Force Majeure contracts in 2021 need to be carefully worded and reviewed to mitigate risks.
  • If you already have contracted services for 2021, please review them now and see if the minimums can be re-negotiated or cancellations waived.
  • Each contract, registration, sponsorship, and partnership agreement must anticipate cancellations, refunds, and/or Force Majeure. Remember, renegotiation may be a good option.
  • The pandemic is a known business risk and is not considered an emergency, therefore insurance coverage and emergency staff services are not applicable.
2021 Budgeting Checklist for Treasurers
Review your conference in a very detailed manner and include the costs of virtual and/or reduced in-person attendance (estimate a 50% reduction). Check out our webinar on Managing Financials and Budgeting.
Review all conference contract exposure and adjust where possible, decrease to minimums, and request further reductions without penalty. Ask what happens if you need to go virtual before it occurs.
Set a framework for pricing for events, including virtual attendance. Many models have been used. Consider creating sponsorship models as well. Discourage “free” attendance. Amend your privacy consent if further marketing is desired.
Get more creative with ideas for exhibits and sponsorships. Pre or post-event sessions, networking events, exhibitor or sponsor tracks, and professional development opportunities are a great way to mix things up.
If you require assistance with budgeting for your 2021 event, please contact the MCE Business Operations Team.
Meet the MCE Team
Lukrecija Lelong, Sr. Manager, Event Management Services
As a Senior Manager, Event Management Services, Lukrecija was recently promoted to manage a team of three managers in addition to her other broad duties. This relationship team is focused on providing customer-centric consulting services for our sponsoring OUs.

Graduating from the American College of Management and Technology in Dubrovnik, Croatia, with a degree in Hospitality Management, Lukrecija has over 20 years of experience in event planning with an extensive background in hotel operations, meeting management, and business development.

From front desk manager to conference planning manager, Lukrecija has experienced all aspects of the industry. She knows the “ins and outs” of executing a successful event from both a venue/operations perspective and from the viewpoint of a veteran meeting planner.

Lukrecija has been with IEEE Meetings Conferences and Events (MCE) for 13 years. In her tenure, she manages multiple high-profile events with attendance upwards of 4,000 attendees. She has planned meetings across the world, overcoming cultural and language barriers to manage many successful events. Lukrecija is known for building excellent relationships with her clients, making the planning process as seamless as possible. Her eye for continuous improvement continues to introduce efficiencies for her clients and colleagues.
Available Resources
On-Demand Conference Role-Based Education
MCE Conference Education has comprehensive education resources. All courses are available in the IEEE Center for Leadership Excellence (CLE).

Conference role-specific learning paths help you gain the knowledge and skills to be successful.
• Conference Treasurer
• Technical Program Chair
• Conference Publications Chair
• Event Planning

An IEEE Account is required for CLE access.
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