Useful information from 2012

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Suggestions for streamlining registration:

  • Have the pre-conference and conference presentations and presenters voted on before the registration opens.
    • This will decrease the chaos that results in having presenters joining in the open registration and then having to account for their spots at a later date.
  • Do not open the hotel or the payment links to whomever registers. Open registration and then those who get into the allotted spots would be contacted with the links for payment and hotel reservation.
    • This will decrease the need for refunds (which cost time and money).
    • This will decrease the chaos of needing to account for people who have hotel rooms who did not get into the conference.
  • Guest room counts and other information useful for venue negotiations are at the end of the document

How Code4Lib National was handled for 2012.

These are not recommendations. Registration was a nightmare.

  • Presentations were not chosen before open registration.
    • In 2010 there was a demand to have an earlier registration release date to accommodate for bureaucratic slowness at institutions.
    • The voting for the presenters went for another 2 weeks beyond the registration opening. This seriously delayed the finalization of the participant list and the release of the wait list.
    • Each presenter (or person on the wait list who then could fill the space left vacant) had to be individually contacted to get their payment and connect with the hotel about their lodging.
  • We started with 213 spots open for general registration because pre-conference, conference presentations were not chosen yet and we didn’t know who the sponsors would be.
    • This was an issue because some pre-conference and conference presentations had more than one presenter and some sponsors get more than one spot, so, again, having presentations chosen before registration would preclude those issues.
  • We opened registration at a certain time and date. The payment and hotel reservation links were open to whomever registered.
    • Opening conference registration and hotel registrations at the same time proved difficult for several reasons:
      • People who did not get into the conference made hotel reservations. These individuals needed to be individually contacted to cancel their reservations.
      • The hotel had difficulty tracking the cancellations, and opening those spots for other participants.
      • Based on the information from the 2011 host, the need for hotel rooms was seriously under estimated creating the need for several different blocks of rooms with several rooming contracts with different rates and different deadlines.
      • The hotel reservation system was not prepared for the onslaught and we broke their registration system, creating more chaos.
  • Those 213 spots were filled in within the hour. The payment and hotel information was then moved so that no one else could access it. This created issues with registrations bouncing.
  • Around 15 people canceled their registrations 2 weeks before the conference which necessitated individually contacting those on the wait list and arranging for payment.
  • The participants list was not finalized until 7 working days before the conference.
    • There continue to be messages on the lists offering spots even up to the Thursday and Friday before the start of the conference. Keeping track of dietary needs and cancellations have taken considerable Administrative time.
  • Original projection of Admin time was grossly under estimated. Based on other conventions of generally the same size and geographically diverse, the Admin time was estimated at 10 working days, not including actual time/overtime at the conference. Actual time was about 29 full working days, again, not including the actual time/overtime at the conference.

Statistics to help with 2013 Code4Lib Hosting

  • Strict 250 participant cap – mandate from the community
  • Adequate bandwidth for wireless usage at conference is vital
    • Ended up needing wired internet access for streaming – was not part of the original negotiations
    • Some questions that we asked the venues:
      • Is your venue able to provide at least 8 mb/sec guaranteed service, either through a dedicated connection or a private VLAN?
      • Can you provide multi-band access points that support both 24 & 5 Ghz service -- 802.11b, g, n and, ideally, 802.11a?
      • Can your system accommodate at least 300 simultaneous connections?
  • Make sure there are Vegetarian meals (30 Vegetarians; 4 Vegans; 3 Gluten-free; 12 Food Allergies)
  • Anticipated Admin time usage (Not including actual time at conference): 10 working days
  • Actual Admin time usage (Not including actual time at conference): 29 working days

Guest Room Pick up

We have use of the same room rate 2 days on both sides of the conference.

Total room Pick-up: 633

Feb 4 - 9 (2 days before conference)
Feb 5 - 102 (day before pre-conference)
Feb 6 - 155 (Pre-conference)
Feb 7 – 156 (Conference)
Feb 8 – 155 (Conference)
Feb 9 – 47 (Last ½ day of conference)
Feb 10 – 7
Feb 11 – 2

T-shirt Amounts and Sizes

This is to give you an idea of what quantities you are looking for if you decide to do T-shirts again.

Did not want a T-shirt - 9
Small - 32
Medium - 82
Large - 66
X-large - 52
2x - 9
3X - 3
4X - 1

Budgetary Considerations

This is not a comprehensive list

When budgeting, things to account for are:

  • Credit Card Charges (how much it will cost to take credit cards)
  • Scholarships
  • T-shirts (this are more expensive than originally thought)
  • Loss from Cancellations (Credit Card refund costs, lost revenue, other things such as T-shirts and lowering minimum participant counts for hotel contracts)
  • Internet usage and Networks
  • Video and Streaming
  • Key Note Speaker Costs, Complimentary registrations
  • Logistics of payments and refunds for out of Country participants

Things to think about…

  • Not having A/V available for the pre-conference did not work well. There were numerous requests for projectors and screens
  • Don’t forget the need for extra extension cords and surge protectors. It was much less expensive to purchase the power cords than to pay for the use through the hotel
  • The Hospitality suite needs to have room for around 50 people and the ability to bring alcohol
  • Think about getting a list of programs and software needed for presenters before the beginning of the conference and setting up an equipment check when the A/V is set up or the night before the beginning of the conference
  • The ‘Ask Anything’ sessions needs 3 microphones – 1 for the presenter and 2 for the audience
  • There was a request for a Book/Magazine exchange