Putting on a conference or meeting where you will have speakers is no easy task. There are seemingly hundreds of “hidden” tasks that only add to the level of stress that piles up quickly. Now to add to all of that, you need to manage abstract after abstract coming from various potential speakers or presenters from around the country (or even around the world), and the success of the conference is riding on selecting the correct speakers.
Collecting via Email or an “In-House” System
Some conference organizers collect abstracts via email, which might be cost-effective, but the lack of organization and the difficulty level of keeping everything in order is sometimes astronomical. Others might be using an in-house system that their IT guy put together specifically for their conference. This seems like a great idea until you realize that you and him are the only people who can effectively use the system, and your reviewers feel like they’re being asked to decode a top secret FBI algorithm just to access the site, let alone actually conduct reviews.
One thing I try to always compare what I call “in-house” abstract management systems to is having that “guy-you-know” build your organization a new website. At first, it sounds like a great idea. The “guy-you-know” is only going to charge you a “couple hundred bucks” and he’s said he’s built a few blogs before. Just think of all the money you’ll save…right? Wrong. What you don’t anticipate is the lack of quality in how things function and look, as well as the fact that it takes the “guy-you-know” three weeks to get back to you just to update some text on a page. In the end, the “couple hundred dollars” he charged you costs you thousands in sales because your site looks like it was built in 1990, and not even a computer programmer can navigate the site efficiently.
The same can be said for collecting and managing abstracts via email or with an “in-house” system. Don’t put yourself in the position of trying to save a few bucks with a DIY system that only does the bare minimum of what you need. Find an abstract management partner that knows the art well and has a lot of experience. Working with an abstract management partner means you’re working with someone that collects more abstracts in a month than you typically would in your entire career. They are the true artists of abstract management.
Understanding All of Your Needs
It’s important that the organization that you work with understand all of your needs and can not only sell you an abstract management system, but can offer best-practices that will make the entire process run smoothly for your organization. They shouldn’t just be order takers, but problem solvers who can be there throughout the entire process for you and take charge of your process. Customer service is of utmost importance when it comes to the art of abstract management.
Omnipress is a family-owned company located in Madison, WI, and our #1 asset is the people that work here. When it comes to abstract management, we have a dedicated group of team members that work directly with you throughout the entire process. They work with you to not only conduct your abstract management, but also to continuously improve your process to save you time and money. Whether you’re collecting abstracts, posters, speaker materials, disclosures or anything else, we make it a point to be the masters of our art.