Insight: Issue 63 (22nd September)
Today’s headline news is. . .*drumroll please*
The SEC in Glasgow is back in business! Plus: 59% of Brits would pay for extra health and safety measures at events; a new apprenticeship standard for AV technicians has been approved in the UK; we’ve got 5 sustainability lessons from G7; and we’re exploring the cross-pollination of AV and videoconferencing tech, to see how it’s turning anyone and everyone into a broadcast artist.
Glasgow’s SEC celebrates return of live shows
As of the start of this month, live entertainment has returned to Glasgow’s beloved SEC following an absence of almost 18 months. Hooray!
The go-ahead was given after the venue applied to have its maximum indoor capacity lifted (previously 2,000 people), with the council deciding that shows could resume with safety measures in place – including improved ventilation, the continued use of face coverings, and requiring visitors to take rapid lateral flow tests before arriving at the venue. On the grand re-opening, Peter Duthie – Chief Executive of the SEC – said:
“We are extremely proud to have played our part in the fight against COVID-19 by providing the space for both the NHS Louisa Jordan and the subsequent vaccination centre but now it’s time to get back to doing what we do best – hosting the best events in the world.”
No, we’re not crying – *you’re* crying!
Would you pay for extra health & safety measures at events?
If your answer to that question is ‘yes’, you’re in good company – recent research by global event staffing firm Elevate found that 59% of Brits would be willing to pay extra for additional health and safety measures at events – things like private transport to venues, an express line for testing, and table service. People in London, Scotland and Northern Ireland are the most keen to splash the cash on these extras, with 68% of event-goers in these regions happy to pay more.
These statistics are lower than the global average of 77%, reflecting a more relaxed attitude to events overall across the UK. Brits are also the most likely to attend an indoor event no matter the scale, with 29% suggesting numbers have no impact on their desire to attend, versus 23% globally. Carina Filek, Global COO of Elevate, commented:
“These results underline what we’ve already seen in the market – huge appetite from consumers to get back out there, and a fundamental reliance on the staff at the event to make them feel safe and secure. The opportunity for brands is there, as long as they take the right steps to make consumers feel secure attending their events.”
New AV apprenticeship standard approved in UK
A new apprenticeship standard for AV technicians has been approved in the UK, with training set to begin from January next year. The aim of the Level 5 Audiovisual Apprenticeship Standard is to plug a long-standing skills gap in the events industry, which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The standard has been developed by Middlesbrough College – home of the UK’s only BSc Honours degree in audiovisual technology – in collaboration with more than two dozen employers and industry leaders. Companies wanting to take on apprentices will need to make room for training during 20% of the working week, which can be fulfilled by Middlesbrough College through a two-year foundation degree. Crucially, the new course will be taught remotely, widening the pool of potential students.
5 sustainability lessons from G7
G7 was the first international event to take place in the UK since the start of the pandemic – and it was watched under the scrutiny of a global spotlight. Every single element of the event was sustainably assessed and audited – the results of which are now helping to inform the environmental measures for COP26 in November. But, on a smaller scale, what are some of the practical, sustainable actions that event profs can take to inform any event?
- Ask yourself, ‘do we really need it?’ ‘Do we actually need to print, produce, develop, or transport X, Y, or Z?’ If the answer is ‘possibly not’, simply don’t include it.
- Stay local. Whether you’re looking for catering, photography or furniture, always source locally. This not only supports the local economy, but also reduces transport emissions.
- Nothing to landfill – ever. Make sure all temporary structures are reusable or entirely recyclable and/or biodegradable. Using locally sourced plants as screening solutions is an easy win, for example.
- Explore alternative energy solutions. G7 used a generator powered by vegetable oil (…no, really). This achieved a 29% reduction in Nitrogen Oxide emissions and a 77% reduction in airborne particulates.
- Travel sustainably. Consider organising a fleet of electric cars to transport your guests, and hire local staff who can walk or cycle to the venue.
How AV is making everyone a broadcast artist
Last on the list for today, we’ve got an insightful article from TechDecisions about the innovative cross-pollination that’s taken place between AV companies and videoconferencing providers since the start of the start of the pandemic – exploring the unique opportunities this creates for event organisers and businesses alike. So grab a coffee, settle in, and have a read.