KPMG: Innovation Via Technology

 

 

Innovation Via Technology

Consultancy powerhouse KPMG views innovation as a strategic priority, from its Ignition collaborative spaces for clients to its internal workforce engagement. It's a concept embraced at every level of the organization—from the c-suite to the sales team. Meetings and events, naturally, fall in line. Just ask Tammy Benedict, who has the enviable title Director, Innovation, Events & Meetings.

"Innovation is everyone's responsibility at KPMG," she says. "We give people time to innovate. We approach things differently. We ask what our attendees need from our events, what their expectations are and how we can deliver against those."

There's also an ingrained motto: Not afraid to fail. Not everything you try is going to work. This includes the company's attitude and approach toward technology and tech innovation. Tech is a big part of what makes KPMG's path to innovation successful, for the organization, its clients and its meetings and events.

Benedict's director of innovation role focuses specifically on technology and how it affects the attendee experience. And while she iterates that technology is largely innovative, she also says innovation ≠ technology. It permeates through every part of KPMG’s meetings. Her staff does, necessarily, comprise of quite a few technological roles, from virtual meetings and webcasting to video tech solutionists, positions brought in from other departments to form the innovation team.

Even with this team of techsperts, Benedict can't do it alone. That's why she created a Meetings Innovation Council, a cross-functional team within the Events & Meetings Department, comprised of people who raised their hands and said, "I want to think differently — I'm interested in tech, and I want to innovate the event industry."

 

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BEST PRACTICES

From MPI's Research
  • Appoint an internal "point person" to oversee, coordinate and supervise the selection, management and deployment of all event technology (including non-event technology such as CRM platforms that are used for event purposes) across the organization.
  • Consider a team approach to the event-technology requirements of specific events. Appoint different team members to represent specific technologies for the event and become the go-to person for all questions and issues regarding this area of expertise.
  • Create a stable of event-technology subject matter experts - either internal or external - who can answer questions and troubleshoot on specific technologies.