Inaugural National Business Events Awards announced at MEETINGS 2024

19th Jun, 2024

New Zealand will celebrate its first national business events awards in 2025, with a bi-annual event to be held in conjunction with the Business Events Industry Aotearoa (BEIA) conference. The National Business Events Awards will recognise and reward outstanding achievements in the industry and promote excellence and innovation, collaboration and congeniality across the sector.

BEIA Chief Executive, Lisa Hopkins says they are excited to be acknowledging the people, the companies, and stakeholders who support the wider industry ecosystem.

“This has been an industry-wide initiative, first mooted by former BEIA Chief Executive Sue Sullivan, and developed and championed by industry leaders such as Megan Crum, currently Head of Business Events at ChristchurchNZ. It was appropriate that Megan, representing the industry, announced the Awards at MEETINGS 2024.

“The time is now right, with the launch of our 10-year strategic direction - Pīata Mai, to celebrate the outstanding achievements in the industry and to elevate the business events sector, and the amazing people and work being achieved,” Hopkins says.

Crum says the awards align with the industry's strategy to support growth, retention, and to champion legacy impacts from business events: “as an industry, we want to raise the profile of the sector, strengthen our voice, highlight contribution and value, and reinforce the diversity of the sector and its contributors.” 

Both the conference and Awards are open to anyone in the business events sector. The new Awards will sit within the BEIA framework, with accountability to the executive and Board, while managed by an independent industry committee and trust.

The BEIA conference will be held in one of New Zealand's metro cities every second year to encompass the National Business Events Awards evening.

“In a non-awards year, conference will be held in a regional city to continue BEIA's commitment to hosting conference in our incredible regional destinations,” Hopkins says.

The inaugural National Business Events Awards dinner will be staged late next year in Auckland, at a date to be announced. One of the many legacy impacts from the awards includes establishing an independent trust to hold and distribute the profit from each event in support of the BE community – its projects and people.


Vocational education key to a resilient industry

Ringa Hora, Services Workforce Development Council and Business Events Industry Aotearoa (BEIA) are coming together to develop vocational education and learning for the business events sector. Ringa Hora will be adding its voice to the Workforce Steering Group, one of the key focus areas industry highlighted as part of Pīata Mai – the strategic direction for New Zealand's business events industry to 2035.

Lisa Hopkins (pictured below) says the Workforce Steering Group has been established to provide a collaborative forum for cross-sector industry representatives who are part of BEIA's membership and subject-matter experts in areas of shared interest.

“Collaboration is at the heart of the development of the steering group that will include broad expertise from the industry representing small and large businesses and those in a leadership or management roles. Ringa Hora is focused on responding to industry needs by developing fit for purpose qualifications and standards. Initial feedback from industry is a desire to explore micro-credentials in the workplace that blends experiential learning and practical application based on business needs”. 

“This ties back to Pīata Mai's vision of creating a resilient sector, attracting and retaining talent. Talent attraction firstly relies on people knowing the sector exists. Traditionally, the sector has attracted people from hospitality, tourism and PR, but there is additional breadth of variety and challenge which only business events offer. There is something so satisfying about delivering an incredible event which leaves a lasting impression on its audience, and having the opportunity to rub shoulders with truly fascinating people," Hopkins adds.

Ringa Hora will have four representatives on the Workforce Steering Group including a cross-section of senior and operational kaimahi (staff) with expertise ranging from relationship management, qualifications, product development and moderation in the vocational education area.

Mel Harrington, General Manager, Partnership & Engagement for Ringa Hora told industry leaders at MEETINGS 2024 that Ringa Hora brings the voice of industry to the vocational education system and this is crucial in ensuring fit for purpose qualifications and skills, now and in the future.

“This supports the broader vocational education and training priorities outlined in the business events industry's strategic direction to 2035 (Pīata Mai) and our own strategic vision,” she says.

Ringa Hora will assist with insights from industry into upcoming qualification reviews for the industry, informing and critiquing existing or new product developments relating to skills and qualifications needed by industry.

“Our role is advocating on behalf of industry to contribute strategically to design qualifications and skills aligned with the strategic direction and national priorities.

“Importantly, in working with industry we want to showcase and celebrate role-models in businesses to recognise best practices and encourage future employees to be part of an exciting, fun and rewarding career in the business events sector,” Harrington says.

Other Articles

About Us

Supported by the Union of International Associations (UIA), the International Association of Professional Congress Organisers (IAPCO) and the Interel Group, the global public affairs and association management consultancy, Headquarters Magazines serve the needs of international associations organising worldwide congresses.