DALLAS, TX — MPI has published its Fall 2021 Meetings Outlook, a future-focused quarterly report that identifies new trends and innovations. Developed in partnership with IMEX Group, Meetings Outlook presents future industry trends and predictions from MPI members, including meeting professionals on MPI’s Business Research Panel. Research is conducted in house using the Qualtrics survey platform.
According to MPI, across the board for most of Meetings Outlook’s evergreen questions, the latest results show slight weakening or uncertainty compared to this summer — although the projections remain overwhelmingly positive and are better than spring 2021 metrics.
• 79 percent of respondents project favorable business conditions over the next year, notably higher than results from last fall when 58 percent of respondents projected a positive future.
• A full 92 percent of respondents identified as being fully vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 — an uptick over the previous quarter, in which 84 percent were fully vaccinated.
• The percentage of respondents anticipating favorable live attendance over the next 12 months is at 64 percent, down slightly from the all-time high seen in the previous quarter.
• Respondents reported an increase in contract hiring (30 percent), slightly greater than the same for full-time (28 percent) and part-time (21 percent) positions.
“It’s encouraging to see sustained positive forecasts for overall business conditions in the November Meetings Outlook report,” said Jessie States, Vice President of MPI Academy. “Nearly 80 percent of meeting professionals predict improving conditions moving into 2022, but a full recovery for many businesses isn’t expected until 2023 (35 percent) or 2024 (22 percent). Projected growth with in-person attendance continues to outpace projected virtual attendance, a sign that meeting professionals and their organizations are eager to convene face-to-face — though their objectives (and therefore design and execution) for doing so continue to evolve due to the newish virtual landscape. One of the biggest challenges facing the industry is filling open positions, a challenge shared by 51 percent of suppliers and 30 percent of event owners and organizers. How that struggle plays out will continue to impact the delivery of in-person, hybrid and digital experiences.”