August 22, 2017 4:29 pm,
Finding the best event management software for your requirements can be difficult. No solution will ever 100% satisfy your needs, but there will be some that clearly stand out above the others. However, proper investigation takes time and effort, but when done properly the benefits are well worth it.
Event management softwares and systems offer managers and administrators immense benefits:
- Complete event management solutions consolidate often disparate systems. As a result, administrators have one place to view information, plan events and manage their offerings.
- Event management softwares will reduce the manual administration tasks. This increases efficiency and gives managers the opportunity to focus on value adding tasks.
- Event management softwares can give event providers a competitive advantage. Features that provide reporting insights, marketing tools and improved registrant experience will grow registrations.
Here are a few tips for choosing an event management solution that will be worth the effort and price and a few providers worth considering to grow your business.
Choosing the best event management softwares & solutions
- Out of box – make sure that the solution will be able to meet majority of your needs right away. Avoid workarounds and custom development for your must have items. If the provider can’t service majority of your needs immediately, you might not be the best fit.
- Scalability – ensure the solution will be able to meet your needs as you continue to grow into the future. Future proof your investment by ensuring that the provider has the capacity and innovation to keep up with your growth rather than limit it.
- Transparent pricing – make sure the solution has transparent pricing with which you can compare other providers. Hidden costs are out there, don’t be caught in a trap.
- Know yourself – know your businesses processes and requirements before seriously engaging a vendor. Take these requirements and relay them to the vendor. For both parties this will make adoption easier as you can clearly identify whether you the solution will work.
- Know the provider – check their reviews over marketplaces, app stores, social media and software review sites. Every vendor will have some negative remarks, but you should watch out for repeated comments on the same issues and poor implementation and support.
Some favorite event management solutions
Trello offers a free and relatively customisable solution to better manage tasks and projects for teams or individuals. Trello offers users an online visualisation for tasks similar to using sticky notes. Create cards for tasks and place them in lists named “To-do” or “completed”, or whatever suits your business’s processes.
Hootsuite gives users one platform to manage all their social media marketing. Scheduling tweets, Facebook and Linkedin posts easily and quickly all at the same time. In addition, view audience engagement and report on activity to gain valuable insight into your social media’s performance.
Arlo is a cloud-based training and event management system for managing, marketing and delivering physical and online courses and events. It provides streamlined event scheduling, online registrations, invoicing and receipting, runs marketing activities, and manages client records and relationships. Arlo has been recognised by many for providing a quality event management platform.
To find out more about how Arlo can help you visit our website or schedule a demonstration.
August 22, 2017 10:11 am,
Save time & increase efficiency
How much time does your organisation spend trying to manually connect the dots between your contacts, accounts, payments, and events? Arlo’s powerful two-way integration with Xero automates these manual processes, and can halve the time spent updating your accounts manually. Xero integration is one of the many business tools Arlo provides to support the growth and efficiency of training and event organisations. Spend less time connecting dots and focus on growing your training and event operation.
- Easily reconcile and match payments received to invoices generated from Arlo
- Track payments and registration approval status
- Manage Xero accounts and tracking codes
- Synchronize contact information and keep records up to date
Leverage Arlo’s extensive research and development in the accounting field. Whether you’re an existing Xero customer or not, this deep integration will provide your accounts team the information they need, at the right time, without the need for manual checks and delayed communication.
Find out more about Arlo’s Xero Integration today.
August 9, 2017 11:57 am,
Software Advice powered by Gartner, recently announced its FrontRunners for Learning Management for 2017. Arlo is pleased to be included in the top tier of the 297 LMSs reviewed.
“FrontRunners quadrants highlight the top software products for North American small businesses. All products in the quadrant are top performers”. LMS solutions were evaluated in terms of capability and value, and those with the top scores made it onto the quadrant. The Quadrant contains 4 sections: Leaders, Masters, Contenders and Pacesetters. Arlo was listed as one of the LMS “Contenders”. See the quadrant below.
“Contenders may focus on a more specialized set of capabilities that are priced at a higher point. This makes them ideal for companies willing to pay more for specific features that meet their unique needs”. For more information on the Gartner study, check out the report. Arlo’s eLearning solution specializes both on Learning Management as well as the coordination and scheduling of training and events.
Arlo is a cloud based training and event management software designed to promote, sell and deliver courses and events. Arlo automates manual processes and routine tasks by providing simple scheduling, online registration, automatic communication, custom reporting, payments & invoicing. The solution goes further to create competitive advantage for users through, beautiful website integration, marketing tools, a robust CRM, valuable reporting, app integrations… Arlo covers all bases, allowing users to manage their courses and events from creation to delivery.
Arlo’s seamless integration with Moodle LMS provides a complete learning management solution for promoting, selling and delivering face to face, online, self-paced and blended learning. This integration combines the power of Moodle LMS with a complete training management solution including online registrations, payments, invoicing, and a robust CRM. Arlo’s learning management solution allows you to include quizzes, SCORM objects, forums, videos, and other online activities within your training. Get live visibility and reporting on all your registrants in one place with Arlo, this includes last accessed dates, learning progress, payment status, grades, results and contact information. Learn more about the Arlo-Moodle integration.
For more information on how the Arlo solution can help you grow your registrations, get in touch today!
July 18, 2017 9:35 am,
It’s not only the teaching that matters!
Our experience was far from the seamless experience we help our clients achieve. Having excellent teaching material is not enough to grow your training business. Many organisations forget the check in experience of their registrants. Or more commonly, training organisations do themselves a disservice by disregarding valuable data. The Arlo team recently attended a training course and found both these factors to be lacking.
Checking in registrants
Upon arrival, we were presented with a piece of paper in which we were asked to write our name and initials. There was no enrollment verification and no record of who was attending! This is a big issue for many training providers who use manual processes to record attendance and enter data. The cost of these paper-based processes is immense. They take time, increase the possibility of inaccurate data and offer a poor user experience.
Arlo’s mobile app easily allows presenters to mark attendance or attendees to mark themselves as present. This information is automatically synced back to the registrants record on Arlo’s inbuilt CRM or to your Salesforce CRM with Arlo’s Salesforce integration. The experience is fast, accurate and easy, reducing the time it takes for registrants to check in. Your customer is our customer, our goal is to provide the best customer experience for your registrants.
Using data to create value
Business intelligence is gold! Understanding your target market down to the specific course gives your business valuable insight. This information can help your marketing team generate promotional material that will attract attention. It will help your sales team identify likely prospects. It will help your content team formulate training material that addresses the registrants needs. Finally, it will vastly improve your registrant’s learning experience. Knowledge of what courses they have attended, allows you to provide them with an individualized learning path and encourage them to attend advanced courses to further up skill. By recording registrant information on paper, you are limiting the amount of data you can generate and increase the likelihood of incorrect entry or loss of data.
Arlo’s extensive reporting allows training administrators to report on an individual’s learning. This information could help your clients grow the level of professional acumen within their employees. For professional development and certified course providers, the data that can be captured with Arlo will help you manage professional development points and issuing certification. From a beginners licence for a motorcyclist to professional development for nurses, Arlo’s reporting can show you exactly what is next for your learners.
The benefit of data analysis goes further than managing learning paths and certification. Information on what courses your clients have attended will help you promote other courses which they might be interested in. Arlo’s campaign management tool allows administrators to run targeted campaigns to promote a specific course.
How are you managing checking in and data entry? Save yourself time, money and give your registrants a better first experience. The training company we attended could certainly use some streamlining. Learn more about how Arlo could help you streamline your attendance.
June 13, 2017 4:41 pm,
Prior to a registrant attending a course there are training pitfalls you must avoid: accurate and timely communication, prerequisite tasks and clear course objectives! To find out more about these read part one of our training experience. Assuming you have these covered, your registrants should arrive on time, with the right knowledge and expectations of course outcomes. However, you can’t stop there! There are a number of pitfalls that need to be avoided on the day of training too. Let us share our experience of a poor training session we attended, with you!
Extra for experts is not just for school homework!
At the training we recently attended, the diverse range in technical ability amongst attendees was evident.
Some learners found the exercises easy while others found it challenging to keep up with.
Because there was no extension work, the advanced learners were left with time on their hands, bored and frustrated. Those who required extra support felt they are consuming everyone else’s time. It is also difficult for the presenter, as they are unable to cater for everyone’s ability.
This could have been managed with a method of teaching called Peer Tutoring. Advanced Learners could have been asked to teach others consolidating their recent learning and supporting those less able.
Having a range of content differing in difficulty, gives the presenter flexibility to cater to all learners present. Be prepared by having some extra material for faster learners. This material can also double as take home content for those who needed extra support. Good presenters cater for individual needs in content and delivery.
May 15, 2017 4:15 pm,
Everyday we help a range of training providers promote, sell and deliver their courses. We have a variety of clients using many different processes, however they all have the same goal, to scale.
We are very passionate about the difference Arlo Software can have on a business by allowing management and training staff to focus on the important things. Many training businesses focus on manual administration tasks at the expense of attendee experience, learning content or training follow-up.
Let us share our experience of attending recent training.
Communication before the course is key!
Providing registrants accurate and helpful information before a course is vital to their experience and your success. Upon registering for our course, we received delayed confirmation with inaccurate time details. The course finished considerably earlier then instructed. This left us feeling unsure regarding our registration status prior to the course. It was also an inconvenience for attendees who based their transport on the times originally given. Our expectations weren’t met either as we felt short-changed after finishing early yet still paying a large amount in fees.
With Arlo, registration communication is automated. The information is tailored to the registrant providing accurate details on what, where and when they have registered for. Learn more about Arlo communication.
Attendees to your courses are paying for what you told them they would receive. Providing any less than that is inviting a negative reflection on your business. At the very minimum meet the expectations which your registrants have paid for!
Prerequisites allow increased learning potential
Prior to our course we were casually directed to reading material and exercises to complete for the course. Although we are busy at Arlo, we recognized the importance of completing this to achieve better outsomes. However, it seemed like the casualness of the invite to prepare meant that many in the course did not attempt the prerequisite material. Therefore, a large part of the course was spent catching up on that material. This left other attendees covering already known material. With course fees, travel costs, accommodation and the return on investment expectations this experience left a lot to be desired.
Formally asking registrants to cover some prerequisite material is asking of their time. Although this can seem a burden, most registrants will appreciate the heads up. It shows that you want them to achieve success and learn. This sets the expectation that prerequisite material is required for attendance. It also lessens the chances of some registrants getting bored by covering known information. Do not take for granted the financial and opportunity cost your registrants take to attend your course. With these costs come return on investment expectations, personal growth and knowledge. Not delivering a satisfactory ROI will negatively affect your reputation.
Course outlines and objectives increase expectation and excitement
Until we began the course we could only guess what we would be covering. We expected some information on what we would be achieving for what we were paying and for what our business goals were. Receiving this information would also have increased our motivation. We would have looked into the topics, as well as considered how they were going to be used at Arlo. Produce course outlines and deliver on the expectations you set.
In this article we have covered the pitfalls one can fall into prior to the course. Next month we will examine what not to do on the day of your course! Make sure you read this to increase your chance of success!
May 15, 2017 4:10 pm,
Google AdWords can influence the number of people coming to your website significantly. There are many elements needed to be considered: advertising content, bid strategy, keywords, audience targeting, budgeting,.. the list goes on. Google AdWords done right can drive large amounts of traffic to your training or event site. This leads to increased engagement, registrations and ultimately increased revenue.
Arlo and Google AdWords Conversion Tracking
Combining Arlo and Google AdWords is a smart move if you want to be able to see how effectively your ad clicks lead to valuable customer activity, such as website purchases. AdWords conversion tracking allows you to see what happens after someone clicks your ad. This provides valuable insight into:
- The return on investment for you to prioritize your budget within campaigns, adgroups or ads.
- Website user behaviour. Which enables you to see what calls to actions are clicked and which need to be adjusted to be clicked more.
- Which markets result in higher conversions. For example: what devices or countries do most of your conversions come from?
These benefits will improve your marketing to better target new customers and profitable markets!
Setting up Conversion Tracking
Within the Arlo order settings users are able to enable the Google AdWord Conversion Tracking easily. Once you have found the conversion tags you wish to track simply select where you would like to use them and add their ID and label. Find out more about setting up Google AdWords Conversion Tracking.
April 26, 2017 11:41 am,
Capterra, one of the leading business software review sites recently released its Top 20 Most User-Friendly Event Management Software report for 2017.
“Capterra released a new report to help event professionals find the right software to fit their needs,” said Rachel Wille Senior Product Research Analyst at Capterra, a group that researches event management systems. “The Top 20 Most User-Friendly Event Management Software report lists software vendors on three criteria: usability, customer services offered, and customer reviews. Arlo ranked 9th with a score of 80.”
With over 400 other softwares in competition, Arlo was pleased to be recognised in the Top 10, as the 9th most user friendly Event Management Software. At Arlo we strive to make the event and training managers job easy, by providing a full solution to promote, sell and deliver courses and events. A lot of effort is put into developing friendly user interfaces, simple yet robust usability and quality support.
Many thanks to all our customers for you honest and helpful feedback. At Arlo we are committed to providing a solution that assists our clients. Feel free to see what our clients have to say about us on our Capterra profile.
To learn more about the Arlo solution have a tour, or try out our 30 day free trial!
March 24, 2017 9:29 am,
Are you running your training or events business but finding yourself weighed down in administration and time consuming tasks? These tasks consume the time you have available to engage in activities which will grow your business. Having your head down in the day to day running of a business takes your eyes off the horizon of where you could go. This is part one of the Refocus & Prioritise series, in this part we will be examining the Pareto principle and how it can apply to our businesses.
What is the Pareto Principle?
The Pareto Principle is commonly referred to as the 80/20 rule where approximately 80% of effects originate from 20% of causes. This phenomenon was originally identified by Vilfredo Pareto who identified that around 20% of his pea pods produced almost 80% of the total peas from his garden. The same link was then shown in one of his studies that 80% of Italy’s land was owned by 20% of the population. Joseph Juran then took the principle and applied it to defects. (Teich & Faddoul, 2007).
The same link can be said of a lot of tasks which many training and event managers find themselves doing day to day. Generally speaking, 20% of the tasks will produce 80% of the growth for the business. Tasks like manually entering paper registration data into a spreadsheet to later use for communication and payment reconciliation may be required for a business, but taking into account the time it takes and the alternative solutions the effect this has on a business is minuscule. Knowing this, there is serious prioritization needed to ensure that you are spending sufficient time on the 20% of tasks that will create 80% of the effect.
Bruce Lee puts it this way:
“It is not a daily increase, but a daily decrease. Hack away at the inessentials”
How can we use the Pareto Principle to Refocus and Prioritize
A Pareto Chart is a powerful way to identify out of a group of tasks, which have the biggest impact. Lets use an example to understand how it is utilized. Sam runs a first aid training school he has been tasked with reducing the number of complaints the company receives and increasing customer satisfaction. Sam was given 100 bits of feedback from customers. They were grouped broadly in 5 sections:
- Paper forms are inconvenient to scan or post to Sam when registering. 44 Complaints
- People can’t keep up with Sam’s business because there is no blog. 3 Complaints
- People can’t get through on the phone, it always goes to voicemail because Sam is busy. 36 Complaints
- People don’t like Sam’s social media profiles because the tweets are infrequent. 5 Complaints
- People arrive late because it takes a while to find the physical location of Sam’s business. 10 Complaints
- People don’t like the music they hear while they wait for the voicemail to begin. 2 Complaints
Let’s first graph the number of complaints:
Now if we work out the cumulative percentage of the complaints (orange line) for each category and order these from highest to lowest we see Pareto in action:
Paper forms and the phone always going to voicemail make up 80% of the complaints that were received as can be seen above.. The 80:20 or Pareto principle suggests that Sam should focus his attention on these two problems before tackling location and the other issues. One solution which Sam could implement and which many businesses worldwide are implementing, is using Arlo for online registrations. Arlo’s online registration allows you to capture the data you need, store it securely and recall it in seconds. Learn more about Arlo’s online registration here, and also customized registration forms to gather targeted information.
Obviously this is a very simple example, but the theory holds. It is not limited to number of complaints, Sam could look at dollars spent, expected return, hours taken etc. The Pareto Principle should never be used in isolation, it proves to be one way event and training managers can think about prioritization and in turn refocus on the things that will grow their business.
In next week’s issue we will be looking at John Maxwell’s rule of 5!
Here are some more materials on the Pareto Principle:
March 21, 2017 2:41 pm,
Here are some of the most interesting and insightful blogs the Arlo team came across this month. Take a read with your next cup of coffee and stay up to date with all things trainings, events and business.
We love sharing what’s helped us, feel free to pass these on to help others!
20 Life Hacks for Event Planners
Productivity is the key to managing your life but this can be hard to find and while we can’t control the amount of hours in the day, we can make a difference in how we spend them… Read more
How to Conduct an Effective Training Session
Learn tips and techniques for effective workplace training. All the planning has been done. All the preparation is taken care of. You know your training needs, you’ve set goals, management is behind you, you promoted your training schedule, and prepared materials, space, and people. The time has finally come: Training day is here. Read more
3 Reasons Why Employees Aren’t Engaged with Training Programs
TJ Coyle – Training Industry
There are so many reasons why employees don’t engage with training programs that we could fill a season of late-night icon David Letterman’s “Top Ten.” For the sake of time, we’ll stick to the Top 3… Read more
People-based Marketing: The Gold Standard
People-based marketing represents an industry shift from targeting devices to connecting with the right people at the right time, with the right message. Rather than targeting ads to devices based on cookies, which is fraught with inadequacies, marketers can now reach people across the many devices they use, thanks to persistent identity… Read more
Evaluating the Impact of Learning Programs
Emmy Monticelli – Association for Talent Development
What are you measuring? What is the purpose of your evaluation? How do you define a successful learning program? With whom are you sharing the results? How you are currently evaluating the impact of your learning programs?… Read more