a2z Enables IEEE Power & Energy Society’s Big Show, Small Team Success

In 2016, more than 800 exhibiting companies and about 13,500 power-energy industry professionals from over 80 countries converged on Dallas for the Transmission and Distribution Conference & Exposition produced by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ Power & Energy Society (IEEE PES). After years of trying different solutions, show management finally found the expo and conference management platform that met its very specific needs. a2z provided them with a set of capabilities and project management support to make the change mid-cycle and still post impressive results.

Ending The Never-Ending Search

Beginning 2010, when Shawn Boon, President of Canfield Event Management, took on the role as IEEE PES T&D’s exhibits chair, she began trying various approaches to floor plan management, booth selection, exhibitor profile creation, and conference session scheduling. She cycled through several platforms, but none were able to provide her with everything she was looking for—an online floor plan and the ability to manage parent-child conference sessions. For years, Boon had to migrate data and exhibitors from one platform to the other after online booth selections had already been made.

Finding The Missing Piece of The Puzzle

While Boon tried various workarounds using other software applications, a2z’s exposition management platform was the only solution that delivered a robust, cloud-based exposition management system (complete with exhibitor dashboard to allow companies to upload and update company and product information on their own) and also recognized multiple sessions (more focused examinations of a larger topic) within a session, a hard-to-find capability required for the conference. a2z’s project managers guided her through the challenges of changing vendors mid-stream.

Big Support For A Small Staff

As a one-person exhibit team, Shawn Boon was able to manage space selection, contract processing, payments, and directory listings for 855 exhibiting companies. She managed the online conference schedule for 100 technical sessions and 885 speakers. a2z’s project managers were integral in helping her transition to the new platform. “The project managers were patient and kind. They listened to my questions and thought about how [trying different ways of doing things] would affect the overall business and processes. It made my job a lot easier,” Boon says.

A Chance To Really Dig In

Because Boon handled the 2016 space selection process using another platform, she hasn’t had the opportunity to use the full capabilities of a2z’s exposition and conference management solution. She is looking forward to the 2018 event when she can work through the entire show cycle with a2z and also access the ability for exhibitors to purchase sponsorships and other opportunities at the same time that they rent booth space. With previous year’s data on the platform, Boon anticipates having exhibitor profiles pre-loaded from the 2016 event and being able to compare the data year over year.