APAC Conference: Board Liaison Site Selection

The site selection for the APAC Conference is co-managed by the Board Liaison, Executive Director, and Event Planning Firm (MCI Events) with the venue and dates ultimately being approved by the Board of Directors. 

  1. The APAC Advisory Group selects initial countries and cities based on the following criteria.
    • Rotating geographically (as much as feasible, given the additional criteria). The main goal is to try not to be in the same city two years in a row.
    • Cities that are large enough to hold us all in one hotel.
    • Areas where we have a strong concentration of active members to assist with conference planning efforts.
    • Cities with multiple options for conference sites that are within 60 minutes of a major international airport. 
    • Cities that are walkable with close proximity to amenities. 
    • Feedback received from previous conference attendees (collected in conference evaluations)
    • Recommendations from the Event Planning Firm utilizing the above criteria
  2. The ED or Board Liaison sends the short list of cities to the board for additional feedback and considerations. 
  3. The ED revises the Request for Proposals based on the previous year's data. 
  4. The Event Planning Firm sends the RFP to all hotels in the selected cities that meet our criteria. Criteria used for the RFP includes:
    • Minimum number of sleeping rooms available on each night of the conference,.The number of rooms used is determined based on the previous year's numbers, with an accommodation for future growth.
    • Requested concessions (i.e. items provided if we reach a minimum target for room nights), which include complimentary room upgrades for conference leadership, discount rate for staff rooms, discount rate for shipments/parking, etc.
    • Minimum space requirements - an outline of the full conference schedule and minimum capacities for each room from start to finish, including committee office space, exhibit hall space, meeting rooms, etc. Capacity used for these requirements is based on the previous year's numbers, with an accommodation for future growth.
    • The preferred meeting space costs, based on the overall budget from previous years. 
    • An audit clause which allows us to receive credit for rooms booked outside of our room block.
    • Additional requirements, such as a generous cut-off date for attendee reservations, and a lowest rate guarantee (which ensures that attendees cannot find a lower rate through another web site). 
    • A history of our previous patterns for dates and room nights. 
    • Requested conference dates. The conference typically takes place in March, which is based on feedback from members in the APAC region. 
  5. Proposals are received from the venues and vetted by the Event Planning Firm, the ED and the Board Liaison. Properties that do not meet our minimum requirements (i.e. requested dates, room rate, etc.) are removed from the list. 
  6. The ED reaches out to members in the local areas to gather feedback on the venues, including safety and walkability of the area. 
  7. The board reviews the information received and assists with narrowing down the properties to visit. 
  8. The Board Liaison and Event Planning Firm(or others in the APAC region, depending on feasibility, cost, and availability) visit the selected venues to tour the facilities and meet the staff. The hotel visit checklist is obtained from the ED and completed after the visit. The ED, Event Planning Firm and Board Liaison debrief from the visits and determine which locations to present to the board for a final vote. 
  9. The Board Liaison presents the board with a list of all options available, including the following information:
    • Hotel name and web site
    • Room rate
    • Feedback from local members
    • Proximity to airport(s)
    • The layout, showing the location of the ballroom and the exhibit hall 
    • Pros/cons of each location
  10. The board votes on the venue and dates for the conference. 
  11. The contract is then negotiated by the Event Planning Firm, using the contract criteria checklist provided by the ED. The ED reviews and signs the contract.