At Priava, our mission in event management booking software is simple. We aim to help venue and event management professionals to excel in what they do. We do this by developing software solutions that allow them to overcome challenges that they face each day and also create other pieces of useful functionality that allow them to work smarter, not harder.
Since launching in 2011, our cloud-based system has been used by more than 1,500 users to manage over 2,000,000 events and venue bookings in venues spanning across five countries. We’re really proud of what we have achieved in the past seven years, but more importantly, we’re really grateful to our customers for being part of the journey so far and for sharing their insights with us along the way.
With each event that has been managed using our system, we’ve learned more and more about the needs of our users and we have and continue to use this understanding to inform new products and features that we develop and how we operate as a company. Here’s a little recap of the five most important lessons that we’ve learned about what venue and event management professionals need to help them do their jobs effectively:
1. Information is power
From booking contracts to event sheets, venue occupancy reports to profit and loss analyses and everything in between, for most venue and event professionals it’s as much about what you can put into a system as it is what you can get out of it. They need access to information that is accurate, up-to-date and that can be produced and shared quickly and easily. Furthermore, they need the information to be presented in a way that is meaningful and relevant not only for them but also their peers and their clients and that designed in a way that suits their company branding guidelines.
With this in mind, Reports continue to be one of the most important features of our system. Our customers can choose from a suite of more than 40 core report templates that can be customised without the need for IT support and at no additional cost.
2. Streamline the booking process
Most venue and event management professionals would agree that they follow the same steps each and every time they manage an event. In order to achieve ultimate efficiency, we closely worked with our clients to develop the six steps to achieve effective venue and event management across every industry:
Through this process we recognised that our users were spending a lot of time on administrative tasks in the Capture & Convert stages including:
- Checking and responding to enquiries about venue availability;
- Recording and reporting on incoming enquiries;
- Creating quotes and contracts to secure bookings.
With this understanding, we set to work on creating a solution which lead to the release of Online Bookings in July 2017. Since its release, we have seen a number of new and existing customers adopt Online Bookings to help them to streamline their booking processes. By giving their end customers the power to check availability, book venues and add details, catering and inventory to their bookings they have significantly reduced the time they were previously investing in thankless administrative tasks which allows them to spend more time focusing on their customers which has improved their service offering, as well as having huge benefits in terms of venue occupancy and productivity.
3. Training new staff must be quick & painless
Staff turnover is a major factor for many of our clients and the time taken to train new staff has a significant impact on the success of their businesses. This means that there is a huge focus on training and induction processes so as to circumvent any downtime/disruptions caused by one staff member leaving and a new person taking over their role.
At Priava, our focus has always been to create a system that is intuitive and easy to use so that all users can get up and running quickly and easily. We have learned that one of our main points of difference is that new users are able to start using our cloud-based system within 2 hours and require limited training. This is due to two primary factors:
- The system follows best practice standards and a natural progression so that the entire process of managing an event or venue booking makes sense from start to finish;
- Our Online Help portal includes an extensive library of support articles, together with phone and email support, so new users know exactly where to turn when they are unsure of something, or in the event that something goes wrong.
4. Integration is an event professional’s best friend
Event professionals are notoriously time poor, so they need event management booking software that help them to increase their efficiency and the easiest and most effective way to do this is to automate as much as possible. Integration allows our users to achieve ultimate efficiency by ensuring information can be shared freely between all of the systems that the use. Some examples of ways that our existing customers are using integration to make automate their tasks include:
- Integrating Priava with Xero to ensure all invoices reconcile;
- Integrating Priava with Salesforce to ensure accurate contact & company data between both applications;
- Integrating Priava with MailChimp to send emails to their customers en masse;
5. It has to be scalable, or it’s not going to work
Above and beyond all, the main lesson that we have learned from working with our clients is the importance of the scalability of our system to accommodate the ever changing, ever growing nature of the clients and the venues that we work with. This includes the ability to cater for things like:
- New venue acquisitions – many of our clients operate multiple venues and, when they acquire a new venue, they need to be able to add new users and event spaces with ease;
- Changes in contracted partnerships – many of our government clients work with contracted catering and audio-visual companies and if/when these arrangements change due to a tender process, they need to be able to deny access for their former partners and give their new partners access to their venue booking information immediately;
The main benefit of Priava’s event management booking software is that many of these can be implemented by system administrators, without the need for involvement from in-house IT departments or our support teams. From adding additional venues to updating catering and inventory and even setting user permissions, they control is in the hands of the administrator meaning that it can be done as often as required, without any additional costs.
If you are interested in learning more about what how our cloud-based venue & event management solution can help you to do your job more effectively, click on the link below to book a demo.