Our Inaugural Networking Event


An inaugural networking event took place to engage a representative cross sectoral group from the events industry to meet and discuss core areas for improvement within the industry. The themes which emerged from this meeting played a key part in shaping the role of EIAI. 

This event took place on the 19th February 2014 in the Gibson Hotel and was kindly supported by ODON insurers. Forty people participated and were split across 5 tables. The questions and key responses are summarised below.

Want to come to our next meeting? Keep an eye out for our members newsletter where we’ll keep you updated on upcoming meetings. Not yet a member? Click here to learn more about becoming an EIAI member. 

What are the key challenges that you face within the Events Industry?
1 Lack of consistency in local authority event licensing and approval processes. Identified by all tables.

  • Lack of communication within local authorities and between authorities and other required statutory agencies.
  • Example;  Noise regulations – lack of consistency with regard to Rural Vs. Urban regulations.
  • Consider: a centralised national Application Process for events.
  • Consider: standardisation of processes, checklists, application forms etc.
2 It’s not a regulated profession – anyone can declare themselves an Event Manager, Event Controller, Event Safety Officer etc. Identified by all tables

  • Not recognised as a profession
  • It’s difficult to get fees for the professions – it’s undervalued in comparison to other professions.
3 Accreditation and training are required throughout the industry, including within local authorities. Identified by all tables.

  • There is a general lack of “event” experience within local authorities.
  • To get specific qualifications you need to travel abroad.
  • There is a general misunderstanding as to how difficult it is to manage events in a safe manner.
  • Consider: a credit system based qualification – combining education and industry experience.
4 Lack of up to date current Irish Legislation. Identified by 4 of 5 tables.

  • The current codes of practice are outdated.
  • The current Event licence legislation is not fit for purpose for all event types.
5 Common sense – v – rules and regulations. Identified by 2 tables

  • Perception that existing rules and regulations are used to prevent something from happening.
  • Local authorities – sometimes have a lack of understanding as to what it takes to make an event happen.
  • Huge percentage of event budgets are currently being spent on health and safety compliance.
  • Most organisers find things are easier outside Dublin.
6 Clarification of roles & responsibilities of an Event Controller. Identified by 1 table.
7 Support from public bodies (Grants/Marketing etc.). Identified by 1 table.

  • Funding delays – impacting the industry in terms of:
    • ability to plan in advance,
    • ability to secure the best financial deals,
    • ability to programme events.
8 Public tendering process for small event management companies. Identified by 1 table.

  • Require a track record – how do companies build this experience?
9 On-site Health & Safety concerns.  Identified by 1 table.

  • On site reporting of incidents – not happening consistently.
10 Insurance.  Identified by 1 table.

  • Promoters should take control of insurance and carry liability.
What do you see are the key benefits of being involved in an events association?
1 One stop shop resource for networking opportunities.  Identified by all tables

  • Working database of people working in the industry and their skill sets.
  • Provide information on business opportunities both nationally and internationally.
  • Centralised best practice for volunteers/ individuals/staff and businesses.
  • List of organisations that are willing to provide student internships.
2 Lobbying on behalf of the industry. Identified by 4 tables

  • Example: lobby for lower VAT rate like for e.g. Tourism – ifaccredited staff are employed.
  • Updating legislation – development of best practice guide.
  • Promoting a greater understanding of the industry.
  • Promote industry lead solutions.
3 Membership of an Association bestows credibility / professionalism. Identified by 2 tables.

  • Cross over with what A.O.I.F.E do? – It’s different to A.O.I.F.E.
  • Should anyone be excluded from the Association?
  • Action: introduction of a fee template for future membership.
  • Action: introduction of “association” standards.
4 Route for people who want to keep learning(CPD). Identified by 2 tables.

  • Resource for Education / Guest speakers on specific topics.
  • Industry lead accreditation system.
5 Watchdog. Identified by 1 table.

  • Advisory group / Provision of advice for event organisers,
    statutory agencies etc.
  • Mediator – space to air and discuss grievances.
  • General lack of oversight in the industry.
6 Link in with Event Management courses. Identified by 1 table.
7 Tendering process support. Identified by 1 table.

  •  Helping small event management companies to get on the public procurement ladder.

To discuss any of the points raised during the inaugural networking event or issues that are affecting you, please go to our group forums.