Most TMCs support hybrid models of self-service and full service. Find a partner that can give you the most bang for your buck while making you successful. Define your roles when it comes to strategy, implementation, additional services (such as room blocks, registration, air), negotiating, contract supervision, supplier optimization, reconciliation, and data. Utilizing a third party planning company gives an organization’s meeting planner time to handle the meeting content while outsourcing the tactical details of the meeting. These companies and individuals become a consultant or trusted advisor based on their experience and industry relationships. They work with a variety of organizations and gain insight into locations, vendors, experiences, and events. In addition, they develop best practices by working with other clients and can bring a fresh perspective and new ideas to a company’s event.
Third parties leverage their expertise to help clients:
- Develop RFP’s for Site Search and Selection
- Negotiate Contracts
- Reduce Costs
- Leverage Buying Power
- Minimize Risk
- Save Time
- Enhance the Attendee Experience
With organizations doing business differently at the moment due to layoffs and furloughs, the role of the independent professional planner is more important than ever in our industry as they can supplement the internal team and become a much-needed extension for organizations. The biggest advantage of outsourcing is that you only pay for services when you need them. That way, you don’t pay for staff or benefits when they’re not needed and can scale as the work changes.
Often third parties have well-established partnerships with a variety of vendors and provide a centrally managed approach to supplier interaction.
This allows them the ability to effectively locate the right vendor for their client to handle a variety of services, including:
- Audio Visual & Technology
- Destination Management Companies (DMC)
- Exhibit/Sponsorship Sales & Management
- Duty of Care/Emergency Preparedness
- Event Services
- Event Design
- Housing Tools
- Mobile Apps
- Registration Services
- Security Firms
- Transportation Companies
- Virtual Meetings Platforms
Take this time to evaluate all contracts in place between now and the end of the year. Once hotels and venues begin opening their doors and we start gathering again, it is not likely there will be 100% attendee participation – companies need to plan for that. Also, be sure to review future contracts and ensure your clauses address the specifics necessary to move, cancel, or re-book a meeting moving forward. A third-party partner can assist with this task, oftentimes even if they weren’t involved in booking the event, as a way for you to evaluate their services.
TMC business travel agency or corporate travel provider is a travel agent that fully manages the business travel requirements delegated by an individual, company, or organization to fundamentally save clients both time and money. TMCs typically use a GDS and provide an online booking tool for flights. They often analyze current travel spend and provide expert knowledge in all aspects of the travel industry.
A TMC can help expedite your understanding of threatening situations in areas where you have travelers and provide services to those travelers. Third parties and TMCs are both “third-party providers” from a definition perspective, and as such, there is no difference. TMCs also have Venue Sourcing and Meeting Planning, so a TMC is often considered a third-party provider.
Third party providers are funded by commissions or are fee-based. Many support hybrid models of self-service and full service, so find a partner that can give you the most bang for your buck, while making you successful. Define your roles when it comes to strategy, implementation, additional services (such as room blocks, registration, air), negotiating, contract supervision, supplier optimization, reconciliation, and data. Sometimes one size doesn’t fit all, and you may find you need two partners to manage the workflow.
Now more than ever, corporations are looking for easier, more efficient, and cost-effective meetings management strategies to navigate through this period of uncertainty and into the future.
To learn more about the new normal and how to prepare for the changes in travel, meetings, and events worldwide, download the complimentary titled, Prepare for a Changed World, which delivers timely peer to peer advice from travel managers, meeting planners, procurement, TMCs, and industry partners.
To learn more about how Groupize helps organizations simplify meeting management, please visit www.groupize.com or call +1-508-232-7719.