Karl Vosper: UK Champion of SRO

Karl Vosper is inextricably linked to SRO as its champion in the UK since 2002. That will confuse some people from the start. SRO, from Standing Room Only, is developed by TopTix in Israel, but was originally distributed in the UK from 2002 as Artifax Ticketing under that name. Then distribution was transferred to Blackbaud, and, aligning the product name with others in their portfolio, became The Patron Edge. It was not until May 2010 that TopTix UK was formed, with Karl as managing director and SRO, now in Version 4, became the recognised name.

The route to now is interesting. Karl started out in the box office at the Central Theatre in Chatham in 1993, who were to be the first arts venue to take Venuemaster from Synchro Systems in Newcastle under Lyme. At 19 he had to go out and buy his own computer to learn about what he would have to deal with at work. This was the time of the big move from DOS to Windows in 1997 and Synchro quickly decided they needed him on their team and he joined their staff, in charge of arts venues in the south with a 360 degree role from sales to implementation and support. After migrating the Royal Opera House to Venuemaster in 1999, ROH decided they wanted him on the inside instead of working for their supplier.

Artifax brought SRO into UK

At Artifax the enterprising Timothy Nathan wanted to add an integrated ticketing product to his suite of tools for arts venue planning, scheduling and operation, and chose SRO from TopTix in Israel whose SRO Version 3 was then cutting edge leader in terms of much functionality. Karl joined the team there and they were quickly successful, securing the South Bank Centre as a user. They became a by-word, reflecting the Artifax approach, for hands on help and support.

Blackbaud wanted a ticketing system too

At this time Blackbaud in the US and the UK was looking for a ticketing system after an unsatisfactory acquisition of Intellitix, in a plan to expand its portfolio of solutions to combat the rise of Tessitura in the US. The hope was an integrated ticketing, marketing, CRM, and fund raising suite of tools would help arts organisations work smarter. They decided they wanted the distribution license for SRO and the team from Artifax was TUPed across to Blackbaud.

Karl is unwilling to talk about this period, but I know personally from my own experience and a visit to the Blackbaud HQ in Charleston that senior management were concerned about the level of hands on help and support they needed to supply for ticketing, and the continuous user’ demands for better interfaces and deeper integration. When some users in the UK asked me to help arbitrate on their behalf, I was concerned to discover that ”billable time” was a key target for Blackbaud services management, responsible for support, on which bonuses were dependent. A big change in culture from Artifax.

I knew that Karl had acquired something of a reputation as the users’ champion at this time, with a friendly approach which often meant things got fixed on-the-fly instead of at the billable rates. I was once in a meeting at which his senior managers tried to persuade me there was not a serious problem in relation to credit card processing, when Karl simply confirmed that there was. This was doomed, and in 2007 he offered his resignation. Blackbaud insisted he stay on and he became the global product manager for ticketing within Blackbaud, liaising with TopTix in the development of SRO and the new Version 4. Then Blackbaud proposed at the end of 2008 he lead on the development and release of a new ‘general admission’ (GA) alternative product called Altru, now Blackbaud’s primary ticketing product. After Blackbaud decided they would not run a pilot project to introduce SRO Version 4 to the arts marketplace, Karl resigned in 2009, required to have six months “gardening leave”.

 TopTix UK launched in May 2010

John Pinchbeck had been freelancing for TopTix in the UK in the commercial entertainment sector and sport, since the distribution license for SRO held by Blackbaud was for the not-for-profit sector. So in May 2010 they formed TopTix UK led by Karl. At this time they had to work in parallel with Blackbaud, but their exclusivity for the not-for-profit sector ended and Blackbaud finally withdrew from supplying and supporting SRO in 2014. In the period before this many users realised they could switch their support to TopTix directly and many did so, with many ex-Blackbaud staff joining Toptix as a result.

I have detected here a “part of the problem, or part of the solution” dilemma for some users. Karl and some of his colleagues were seen as initially helpful, but unfortunately problems seemed to mount up during the Blackbaud years. Ironically, switching to TopTix direct support and finding these could be quickly fixed did not prove satisfactory to some people.

 “part of the problem, or part of the solution”

This situation was amplified in 2014 with Blackbaud withdrawing, users wanting to migrate to SRO Version 4, and Blackbaud’s credit card processing solution Logic TPS also being withdrawn at, interestingly, exactly the same time as Blackbaud’s withdrawal.  TopTix had used the YesPay credit card processing solution but unfortunately this had run into problems of PCI DSS compliance and in June 2014, YesPay could take no new customers, with 40 Blackbaud users due to lose their service in August.

By any standards that is an emergency, with just two months to find an alternative gateway supplier, to build and test interfaces, obtain approvals, and set up and test 40 separate users. For those two months Toptix staff were entirely on the road, already in the middle of a sequence of 9 go-lives for new users and migrations for existing users, and inevitably there were ”dropped balls” on the way.

SRO: “Best Kept Secret”

Where to go from here? My colleague Andrew @TicketTattle Thomas and I have thought in the past that TopTix could be described as “the ticketing industry’s Best Kept Secret”. There are now 250 users of SRO Version 4 around the world and over 40 in the UK, Including the Buckingham Palace operation for the Royal Palaces with 3.5 million tickets sold per annum through 80 points of sale. One of the advantages of Version 4 is that it is architected for large-scale, multi-user, multi-venue setups. The “Rules Engine” combined with the middleware capability gives it exceptional tools, helping provide City-wide solutions, such as adopted in Leicester. That means it can be the right system for people wanting an “enterprise solution”, providing an application that can integrate and interface with all their other software and solutions, and provide the ”database of truth” for the 360° view of the customer. If you can get your head round it, the Rules Engine delivers an astonishing configurability of functions and processing.

‘annus horribilis’

But that “annus horribilis” in 2014 has dented their reputation in the sector, and quite a few users still can’t make up their mind on the “part of the problem, or part of the solution” dilemma. Karl has taken a lot of steps to address this. They have stopped working virtually and opened a new office in Clapham with a new staff structure and expanded staff. In the restructuring, two people were made redundant, some left, but more have been taken on in new roles. Industry stalwarts Pete I’anson (ex The Lowry and AudienceView) and Ken Paul (ex Delfont Mackintosh, NIMAX and ENTA) have joined. In addition to their 9am to 9pm office-based support, there is a user forum and a dedicated website that is helping users to network together and share solutions on a ‘self-help’ basis. Karl worries that while many venues have got 5 or 6 users logged onto this, there are still users who do not engage, and often these are the ones who have problems that could be easily solved.

Karl says the need is for more organisations to understand that ticketing is no longer just a sales operation and, in a sense, “the system does not stop when the box office closes”. He sees the need for users to understand the up-selling and extended sales and customer service opportunities of SRO, and take advantage of the Rules Engine. Instead of just talking about making tickets available through more channels, selling tickets in the bars and cafes in venues, plugging SRO4 into facebook, recognising members, subscribers and offering them additional benefits, he wants to see more organisations adopting this philosophy with the tools that they already have available. He remains convinced that SRO is a tool to empower organisations and he wants to help them to challenge the people who interface with the customers to make a real difference.

 users have to become the champions now

Karl acknowledges that TopTix had to address their relationship with their users following the events of last summer, so they come to see again that SRO is championing meeting their needs every day. I wonder if that means the users have to become the champions of SRO now?

 

Roger Tomlinson

June 2015

The motive power in Spektrix

When Spektrix burst into the ticketing sector in the UK in 2008, signing RADA, it looked to be a welcome if disruptive innovation.  In many ways it was the first fully fledged Software as a Service (SaaS) system, browser-based, single iteration, multi-tenant, with a polished and clever user interface – sliding tabs at the side of the screens hugely extended what could be done quickly from one place – and a “no up-front cost” with charging based entirely on usage, calculated as a percentage on income.  It was immediately changing the basis of competition between system suppliers and emphasising true “ease of use” for operators.

The motive power behind that launch was Michael Nabarro, a Computer Science graduate from Cambridge University who had gone on to manage the University’s ADC Theatre for 3 years.  When he arrived in that job, the ADC Theatre used to hang off the Cambridge Arts Theatre’s ProVenueMax system from Tickets.com.  The ADC decided to install SROv3 from Artifax as an in-house system.  This system, originating from TopTix in Israel, was transferred from Artifax to Blackbaud as the UK licensee.

Michael and his colleague and co-founder Matt Scarisbrick learned some tough but necessary software lessons at the ADC.  They had needed to apply considerable technical skill from their computer science knowledge to make SRO work as they wanted, especially on the web, and of course found that every upgrade broke their customisation.  They also began to understand just how important the back-end of any system was to what they wanted the front-end to do.  They also discovered how the support and help you got from your supplier made a crucial difference to your ability to use the system effectively.  It seems to me that there were some abiding lessons which had much influence on the Spektrix to come.

Michael and Matt formed the Spektrix company in 2007 and took 18 busy months to reach a workable system they could supply.  This was entirely funded by family – Daniel Nabarro is non-executive chair – with Matt as CTO and the key technical partner who designed the architecture which has enabled the system to grow in volume so rapidly as SaaS while meeting the needs of a huge range of clients.  Michael leads on the direction of the product and ensuring the functionality meets user needs with that usability which makes such a difference.  Some venues choose the system almost exclusively because of that user interface.

Back in 2009 the revenues started to flow and Michael ensured the company did not need to take on additional investors by re-investing in on-going software development from revenues.  From the beginning support and help to users were a key component of the Spektrix approach, initially promising whatever additional development users needed, and going the extra mile to help people get what they wanted from the system.  That commitment to support is a significant cost factor, and at 47 people they are now a large employer amongst ticketing system suppliers in the UK, with small teams in Manchester, New York, as well as in London, where they are heading to move to their sixth office in UK as the team expands.

Spektrix staff have always been drawn from the sector which Michael believes adds a significant dimension to how they can understand and work with users.  He himself went on to do a lighting design course after his degree, and periodically works professionally as a lighting designer for theatre productions, maintaining that close connection between ticketing and the art it serves.

Michael and I have disagreed about their revenue model from the beginning.  I don’t like the usage-based model, based on a charge on income, because it takes more money from venues the more successful they are, and I believe it becomes relatively expensive over time.  Michael is adamant that for the arts he never wants to skimp on the support and training and the continuous development; therefore the cost of providing the system drives the revenue model.  Now they continue to charge based on usage, but with a £10,000 per annum minimum, because they never depart from their full service supply model, now on a per year license model, so the commitment is for one year at a time.  Obviously some of the earlier adopters have different deals, and as a matter of principle Spektrix honours those deals with all the original users and their terms.  And the usage-based model does not appear to have inhibited their sales to arts organisations.

Spektrix have achieved some ambitious targets quite quickly, signing up some larger scale clients such as Town Hall Symphony Hall in Birmingham and recently Chichester Festival Theatre, as they add functionality and drive growth.  There are now over 200 users and 2,000 live terminal log-ins, with about £140M in ticket sales in 2014.

Michael’s ambition is to make a big difference over the next 10 years by deploying technology so the arts can work smarter and be more successful, and that means Spektrix will expand the solutions it provides.  They have already added a fully fledged fund-raising and donor management module with some great tools which go beyond what the established competitors have to offer.  Michael sees huge room to expand the software capability – covering the areas it makes sense for Spektrix to do, and to offer a full Application User Interface (API) so users can develop connections to third party solutions. In the debate about ‘enterprise solutions’ and ‘platforms’ in the ticketing sector, Michael does not see Spektrix delivering everything.  Instead their continuing strategy is steady growth and they are not building to sell the system quickly, but more to consolidate the capabilities provided to users.

That user interface continues to be a particularly special quality, with a concentration on making complex tasks as simple as possible, especially in marketing and CRM, where the system now incorporates Culture Segments and tools to profile and select customers based on behaviours and attitudes.  That focus on how the users use the system and get the best from it is a crucial emphasis that Michael champions.

Michael Nabarro is now CEO of Spektrix, still only with family investors, and Libby Penn is UK MD and they have a separate US subsidiary with a team in New York led by Gavin Berger, with Adam Rubin (ex AudienceView) on sales. Sadly they have withdrawn from the Spanish marketplace where the ticketing model there and the turmoil in the local economy stunted their growth.  You get the real sense that Spektrix learns lessons and applies them to future benefit, and the large US marketplace is proving very interested in the ways Spektrix works smarter.  Clearly, Michael and Spektrix are motivated to deliver much more.

Monad – It scores what!??!

There can be few better places to spend the morning talking ticketing technology than the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London. I recently met with Monad Ticketing’s founder and CTO Ben Curthoys to have a light audit of their system.

Having seen a great deal of Monad’s work in recent evaluation sessions, we have always found their answers on the Functionality Builder MORE than accurate, often even underscoring themselves.

They are a system for which we have yet to write a full review, but Monad score’s highly in terms of functionality, but also in cost effectiveness and references from its customers.

In some recent processes, where their name has scored highly, people have asked “who?”, so then follows us explaining their outline offering and key features.

As with other audits the process was simple, pick a good handful of criteria and ask the vendor to “prove” they could do it.

Monad’s absolute commitment to being open and honest about its functionality made this a session where we saw the least change in ANY area to date. Again, as with other systems, we like to highlight the negative points adjustments to show that not everything with everyone is rosy.

Monad lost a total of three points from its MET score. All three were on technicalities, in that it just did not quite deliver what would be expected by a venue. Of these three points, these all went to “Workaround” score, but between our session and writing this audit up, we have seen these items reworked to push two back to MET and one which remains in Next Version state.

Given Monad’s ability to react, develop and deploy new features, this is a not a surprise and has led to its fast rise up the scoring rankings of the Functionality Builder.

In terms of other scoring adjustments, we found two pieces of functionality that had their scores upgraded. Monad believed one was a workaround, when, in our view and the majority of clients it would be seen as MET, along with another piece, which again was part of a recent upgrade and been overlooked by their team.

Overall Monad score is as accurate as any we have seen through this year’s audits. In terms of scores out of 649, it is below others, but as we often say to clients, no-one wants 649 criteria to be MET, they typically want a score between 300 and 500; if a system has those items, it is viable for your organisation.

Audit Result – Pass, the most accurate score yet. Net score movement (0)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AudienceView Functionality Audit – PASS!

The process of conducting audits of scores in the Functionality Builder can be quite a chore.

From the 649 criteria, we pick around 50-60 different ones from the 23 categories, covering everything from assistive technologies for audience members, to recording regrets.

I must admit, I have always liked the way AudienceView performs certain tasks, or brings together different areas, into one well thought out screen, so decided to pick some more of the “challenging” criteria, to see just how well they scored.

The mark, I always think, of a well thought out and managed system is the ability to show almost any feature or function “off the bat” – that is, the demonstration system able to show the full range of it’s abilities. AudienceView’s Dave Dingle, one of the industry’s longest “single system” members, was driving our session and was able to efficiently and accurately take us through the 60 criteria for in depth evaluation.

Now, those of you who have contacted us, asking if we were going to audit a long list of systems, AudienceView being one of them, will no doubt be asking “where’s the score” – well, to cut to that…..

On the negative side. . . . on reviewing one piece of functionality we downgraded a single criteria from “MET” to “Workaround” – this was the subject of quite a discussion.  The hotly awaited Version 7 of AudienceView will see this criteria go straight back to MET, we have no doubt, but in terms of an audit, it did not quite match the level of functionality we would expect venues to expect.

So was this early loss of a point a sign for the rest of the session? Far from it!

Working through some of the more complicated scenarios, around seat plan adaptation and annotation, it became clear that AudienceView are delivering solutions that allow their customers, large or small to “ticket THEIR way”, all too often system suppliers want you to “ticket OUR way”.  Using the range of tools in just seating plan design, allows venues and organisations, to create, quickly and simply, complex seating plans, not just in terms of rows and seats, but sight lines, physical features and other overlays.

key to the SALES process as being able to show accurate and complex information on a seating plan

It seems odd, and something we must address, that something as key to the SALES process as being able to show accurate and complex information on a seating plan, only account for a few pieces of detailed criteria for functionality scoring.

Away from  the “less sexy” areas of the system, we also pushed Dave hard on data sharing, such as specific questions and statements for specific promoters and producers, as we are finding this a hot topic with some clients who are working under the new data sharing agreements from the Arts Council of England. We challenged Dave to show how a new event on sale could have specific questions for their purchasers, which he duly showed.

Working through some of these more detailed and complex business tasks we were able to see and mark off a number of other criteria in the CRM category. In addition to having their previous answers verified, we also found several that, pending some more discussions, will see AudienceView gain around 5-10 extra “MET” marks.

we are seeing AudienceView make sure it stays in the top tier of systems with highly developed functionality

As mentioned earlier, their next major release, like those for all systems, will add new rafts of functionality to an already rich product. EMEA Managaing Director David McClellan walked us through a presentation on these features, which we cannot reveal here, but adds further weighting to their “Next Version” score.

Overall, we are seeing AudienceView make sure it stays in the top tier of systems with highly developed functionality. Its’ ability to be configured to achieve the same results through different routes within the same system, really does allow venues and organisations that deploy it to have the ability to have the system work as they want it; we feel that is a big feature just on its own.

Audit Result – Pass, net score movement (+5)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spektrix Passes Annual Functionality Audit

Many clients of the Ticketing Institute often ask us “how do you know the answers in the Functionality Builder are correct?” – to which we often reply about our knowledge of their clients, staff, developments and versions, as well as formal evaluations as part of tender processes. As Roger often states “the devil is in the detail”, so we have just begun a series of “MOT” (Certificate of Road Worthiness) style spot checks on vendors to examine random selections of their answers.

As Roger often states “the devil is in the detail”

I recently travelled to London to carry out one such session with Spektrix.  As I produced a file of notes from my briefcase, I could see Libby Penn’s (Spektrix new Managing Director in the UK) and Michael Nabarro’s (Spektrix Co-founder and CEO) eyes widen.

We ran through a cross section of their answers to the Functionality Builder that they had answered as “MET” – that is they could undertake all the requirements of the criteria stipulated, now and in a live production environment.

We examined their Met features, with Michael driving a demonstration system and Libby talking us through the processes.

In the interests of complete transparency we found ONE single criteria for which their answer was not quite correct, which we discussed at length and I did concede that it could be construed in several ways. Both Libby and Michael were happy to self-re-assess and mark themselves down a point on that one; clearly they are keen to make sure the “what we say is what we do” mantra, sometimes missing in software, is part of their ethos.

The issue of quality of the feature is a hot topic

Whilst looking at many other criteria, it became clear that their thought process in certain features was very clever. Not alone in offering great waiting list functionality, their ability to almost seamlessly convert into marketing campaigns for extra shows, flagging regrets for subscriptions or fundraising events, or simply allocating the tickets, all seemed little more than a mouse click or two away, in a soothing and efficient user-experience.

The issue of quality of the feature is a hot topic with vendors sometimes, as most systems, can “print” a ticket, but what about multiple formats, sizes, printers etc? Spektrix clearly showed in a number of their features that they had not cut corners or the design process in bringing ideas into the product.

Having had a net “loss” of one point from our first session, we moved onto items in their “Work-around” score column.  These are features they cannot perform exactly as described, but by two or more tasks, possibly combine to produce the desired outcome.

….perform a huge number of tasks for any box office.

“Work-around” has a different meaning for some suppliers, or has in the past. For example, going back to printing, a work around for printing a ticket COULD be to copy the details of the ticket into a Word document template and laser print it.  This IS, I suppose a workaround, but not how the Functionality Builder scores them.  We found, again a number of well thought out features, which could be used to perform a huge number of tasks for any box office.

If truth be told we spent too long discussing UK postcode data, the powerful API, and the data sets behind them, and their application in both Sales and Marketing for venues. We were actually examining a geographic question that Spektrix had marked as “Work-around”.  Our protracted discussions led us round to upgrading their work around to a Met status: they had underplayed or downplayed their strength and delivery in this area, but should be shouting it from the rooftops, with all the possibilities for its application that we had come up with in our 30 minutes brainstorm.

Several other small features we picked through regarding Web APIs and cross-selling mechanisms also saw the status of their answers upgraded giving a net gain of several points on the session.

Having looked through these answers we had a session on technical infrastructure and reworking of certain parts of the system, all of which will no doubt strengthen Spektrix’s ability to meet the needs of more complex ticket revenues and organisations.

Spektrix gets a “passed with flying colours” award from our audit procedure.  The bar has been set in their honesty of answers, as we move onto other systems in the coming months, I only hope they too can show the transparency I saw yesterday.  For too long our industry has been over shadowed by some unscrupulous sales practices.

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Ticketsolve Joins TI Partner Programme

 

Ticketsolve logo

We are delighted to announce that Dublin based cloud ticketing provider Ticketsolve has become a 2015 partner to the Ticketing Institute.

Their white-label system has managed to do what not many systems achieve which is manage the different requirements of arts venue, comedy clubs, sports events and festivals.

Certainly, a glance over their features page does show the breadth of functionality they have. As we see as consultants using the Functionality Builder, the level at which systems perform tasks, the complexity, automation and overall usability all need to be considered, so we will be having a very close look at Ticketsolve in the coming weeks, to report back on what we see.

In addition to supporting the Ticketing Institute as a place for news and discussion, Ticketsolve are also working through the 646 criteria in the Functionality Builder, so as that we can bench mark them in selection processes.

 

 

 

Teaching us the ABC’s?

Ticket ABC Logo

 

The UK marketplace, some have commented, is currently ‘overpopulated’ or ‘swamped’ with systems, many vendors have complained of this, or their own lack of sales.

Well, sorry, there seems to be a new entrant or rather an emerging member of the community.

I had a brief glimpse for Ticket ABC today and I must say it looks to be on the way to offering a great deal of what venues tell me they need / want.

I will caveat this with the fact we only had a chance to run through a few areas of core use, so we will be finding time to do a full review, as well as look forward to seeing their scores on the functionality builder.

If you feel like checking them out in the meantime, they can be found here ticketabc.com

Exciting Job Opportunities at PatronBase

Two new opportunities have been advertised with Ticketing Institute partner PatronBase, details below

2

Sales and Account Co-ordinator

Salary: Competitive based on experience, plus commission on sales
Contract period: 12 months fixed
Location: Working from home covering UK and Northern Ireland
Deadline: 17.30, Friday 30th January 2015
Job Description

Support Analyst

Salary: circa £18,000 (dependent on experience)
Contract: Permanent
Location: Cardiff Office with potential travel of 3-5 days per month
Deadline: 17.30, Friday 30th January 2015
Job Description

TopTix Office Helpdesk Move

TopTix UK have started the year by consolidating its help desk resources into a central location with  the opening of their London office.

Like several other of the major providers, they have previously been deployed in virtual offices, with staff working from home, around the country.

Having core support operations together allows vendors to better understand support activity levels, spot patterns, share problem-solving more quickly, and increase staff awareness and training, through exposing them to a much richer environment and shared knowledge on a daily basis.

With their huge growth of TopTix of the last few years, now untethered from Blackbaud in the UK, it is encouraging to see the investment being made to ensure that support levels are maintained, and, like their product, continue to improve.

TOP TIX PRESS RELEASE

2015 has started with the opening of the first Toptix UK office – desks are being built, computers setup, cables are being plugged in and the first pot of coffee has been filtered…..all systems are go for the first Toptix UK office to declare itself open!
Toptix UK is heading into its 5th year and with Helpdesk being the most important part of our business, together with a growing team and customer base, this move will allow us to centralise our 364 day a year Helpdesk operation.
Our team members learn something new every day, that’s the result of having SRO4 which is the most comprehensive ticketing and CRM system in the market place. A centralised operation will bring together our PRINCE 2 certified Project Managers, Implementation specialists and Helpdesk team to enhance communication and knowledge.
These teams working alongside our Helpdesk Manager, Rhys Beynon and our Operations Director, Rob Fleming will help maintain, and ultimately improve, the standard of support and service we are able to offer our clients.

Karl Vosper, Managing Director says “This is an exciting step for Toptix UK which will benefit not only our team, but also the service we offer our clients”
Nothing changes for our clients as all contact phone numbers and emails addresses remain the same – that’s the power of technology.

ENDS

 

Tessitura Users Converge in Birmingham

As part of our on-going coverage of user conference season, we asked Tessitura’s Director of Client Development (Europe) Tim Coleman in his own words to fill us in on what looked like a packed two days at the Birmingham Hippodrome this week.

Tessitura_Logo_web
Tessitura European Conference, Birmingham – 20/21 October 2015

Over 350 Tessitura users from the UK, Ireland and Denmark gathered in Birmingham on 20th and 21st of October for the Tessitura European Conference 2014 and two packed days of discussion, training, networking and planning with Tessitura Network staff and sponsors from the UK and USA. The different areas of interest that were covered were IT, Customer Service, Ticketing, Online, Fundraising, Marketing, Education and an Executive Track, with over 60 different sessions over the two days.

Tessitura Lighting up Central Birmingham (UK)

Tessitura Lighting up Central Birmingham (UK)

The European Conference is a chance for Tessitura users to share best practice with each other and receive training from the experts. Hosted by Birmingham Hippodrome, where Tessitura has powered the ticketing and CRM needs since 2008, the resident planning team built on their experience of previous conferences and delivered a faultless experience to all those who attended.

The conference opening address was given in the Hippodrome’s main theatre by Jack Rubin, President of Tessitura Network, set against the distinctive backdrop of the Blood Brothers set. An inspirational keynote was delivered by Executive Vice President, Andrew Recinos, a reprise of his highly acclaimed speech delivered earlier this year at the global Tessitura Learning & Community Conference in Dallas, Texas.

This year, education was high on the list of conference priorities as more and more learning and participation departments are getting on-board with the system. Recent enhancements have made the tracking of bookings by teachers, schools and the actual participants much more transparent.

Input from the user community is fundamental to the development cycle of Tessitura so conference delegates were given the opportunity to look at what the Tessitura development team is working on and provide a valuable feed into this process, better defining requirements and functions.

Networking is a huge part of what the conference has to offer and along with the various coffee breaks (with cookies and ice-cream for afternoon pick-me-up) there was an evening networking event at the Loft Lounge with a curry supper and live music provided by world-renowned electric string quartet Siren.

The team at the Birmingham Hippodrome saw all their planning and hard work pay off to provide a truly memorable experience for all those who attended. Everyone in the Tessitura Community is now looking forward to the world wide Tessitura Learning and Community Conference (TLCC) in Orlando in August 2015 and the next Tessitura European Conference in November 2015, which will be hosted in Nottingham.
#tessnet #TessEC14