Résumés and work orders — the key documents that define your meeting for a hotel or convention facility — have been under the microscope of the Convention Industry Council's Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX). And now it's your turn. After interviewing American and Canadian meeting planners and a variety of meeting facility professionals, collecting a broad sampling of résumés (aka, operations manuals, specification sheet, etc.), and distilling the best practices from what they found, the APEX Résumés & Work Orders Panel released a preliminary report on October 1. The 27-page draft is available for public comment through mid-March at www.conventionindustry.org, after which the panel will go back to work on its goal of establishing industrywide accepted practices in the content and format of these forms.

The panel, co-chaired by Sandy Biback, CMP, CMM, CEO of Imagination+Meeting Planners Inc., and Susan Schwartz, CEM, president of ConvExx and executive director of the Exhibition Services & Contractors Association, has put together a three-part document template. It includes a general overview, or “narrative,” of the meeting, a schedule of events, and a “meeting event order,” which records each function's specifics. There are two meeting event order samples, one for functions and one for exhibitions. Even unfinished, the panel's comprehensive draft could serve as a resource for planners in need of a well researched meeting specification form. A finished report is due in October 2003.

“Our hope,” says Schwartz, “is that when completed, the technology group will create a single document or a single Web-based product, where the meeting manager or the exhibitor or the show manager can go in, type everything they need, and shoot it to the hotel, facility, where ever. That person can then take it and break it up and shoot it out to the various departments, without having to do all the retyping that's being done now.”

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