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Everyone takes it for granted that online tools will deliver the best rates for business travel. But hardly anyone turns to tech when it comes to meetings and events. That’s odd, because it’s the time spent at the meeting, and not the travel there and back, that yields any results. All that’s about to change.
As Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning technology hit the mainstream, the more knowledgeable meetings managers are using the emerging science of predictive analytics to squeeze every last drop of value from your meeting budgets and absolutely maximise your delegate experience.
By studying your past data, AI can detect meaningful patterns and trends and use them to predict what’s likely to happen when you apply that knowledge to meetings in the future. It’s powerful because it works at a scale and depth of detail impossible for human analysts.
Let’s say 100 delegates are invited to a summit. Past data shows that only 22% will RSVP within a month but 58% more will finally accept (many after the booking deadline). After uncovering that, AI can predict how many delegates will actually attend, so you can confidently book the right venue at the right cost well in advance.
You can also calculate the most cost-effective and time-efficient location and venue for your company to hold a meeting depending on factors like where your delegates are travelling from. On the other hand, predictive analytics could also help you decide to send fewer people to a conference in, say, Asia-Pacific, if airfares to the destination were forecast to rise at that time of year.
AI can even rapidly analyse attendee expenses claims and individual behaviours to detect anomalies. It means you can identify that 5% of delegates making bogus claims without aggravating the 70% who never cheat or the 25% who make the occasional mistake. What’s more, intelligent analysis can highlight how, although a meeting attendee spent an unauthorised £10 on an in-room movie, they skipped a £30 dinner as a result.
The big challenge of AI will be making the most of the mountain of unstructured data available. That’s where a meetings and events management company’s expertise is invaluable.