Suggestions for Event Organizers

Preface

The EIT Digital Alumni is a non-profit foundation that brings together the graduates from the EIT Digital Educational programmes (e.g. Master’s, Doctoral, Professional, Summer Schools, etc.), as well as individuals who had a formal function within EIT Digital (i.e. former employees). As part of our mission, we organise meetups and events for our community members. 

We have prepared these guidelines to help our members interested in organizing an event on behalf of the EIT Digital Alumni. You will find here useful suggestions on how to plan and execute any event funded by the Foundation, regardless of the type (e.g. meet-up, workshop, hackathon, etc.) or the location where it is held.

Please keep in mind the following key steps before, during and after your event. In case of further doubts or questions, do not hesitate to get back in contact. 

 

Before applying for Alumni Board support

  1. Define a topic, general concept and goal(s) of the event

    • The most important aspect is to clearly communicate “What is the event about?”

    • There are many sources of inspiration you can rely on, e.g.: Are you an expert or passionate about some specific topic? What kind of skills would you like to learn or further develop? Is there some trending topic in your city or social community that should be worth discussing with others?

    • Always keep in mind to outline clear objectives when deciding on an idea for a meetup. When it comes to social gatherings, besides meeting and networking with other alumni, you should also consider why your idea is worth to be supported (i.e. funded and promoted) by the Foundation. Why is your event different from any regular meet-ups that can be organized directly with your friends or via social media?

  2. Decide the date and location

    • Feel free to contact directly your closest Co-Location Centre (CLC) manager: You will find they are usually very cooperative and willing to help.

    • Your event could also be held at a startup or external company. This option is very convenient, because many companies are interested in promoting themselves to potential partners and searching for prospective job applicants. In some cases, they may even provide you the venue, food and drinks for free!

    • The Alumni Board and Local Community volunteers can also help you look for the availability of other venues in your city

    • Consider the availability of any invited external speaker(s) and your audience when choosing a date

 

Submit your event application HERE

The Alumni Board will review your application and decide whether the proposed event is eligible to receive funding from the Foundation. We will do our best to give you an answer within one week.

According to our Financial Plan, we have a reference budget limit of 300€ per event but this amount can be allocated flexibly (higher or lower value) depending on various factors, such as the ones indicated in the General Guidelines. If you determine there are compelling reasons to give a higher budget for your event, please inform the board the estimated amount and explain briefly why in the application form. All costs are covered via reimbursements, after presentation of proper supporting receipts.

Once your application has been approved, the Alumni Board can help you with the following points:

  • We can get you in contact with other alumni community members or the Co-Location Centre (CLC) managers within your location. You could organise the event by yourself, but we warmly suggest you to set up a team of local organisers with different people working on specific tasks, in order to make the event organization easier

  • We will coordinate the promotion of your event on our website, local Facebook group and other social media channels. This content can then be shared and promoted further with your contacts.

    • If there is no Facebook event, we will create one for you and make you co-host. Please send us the exact start/end date and time, address of the venue and text description (including the planned event agenda, if applicable)

    • If you have already created a Facebook event, please add EIT Digital Alumni (@digitalumni) as co-host

 

Logistics before and during the event

  • You can refer to this file to get an idea of how your event schedule should tentatively look like

  • Collect participants’ basic contact information to inform them about any changes in the event, how to reach the venue, etc. Due to GDPR, you must explicitly ask for consent (e.g. by including a form checkbox) to collect any personal data. Ask only for the most essential information that is needed to organize the event

  • Send a reminder to the audience when the event is approaching. Get in touch with the speaker and get his/her presentation beforehand, to avoid any discrepancy. Finally, be sure of the availability of your audience and provide them clear instructions on how to reach the venue

  • Make sure all the A/V equipment (e.g. projection, lighting, speakers, adapter cables, etc.) works properly. We also recommend that one laptop should be used throughout the event, with all the presentations on it. Remember to have a backup just in case something goes wrong (no worries, most likely something will go wrong! ;))

  • Reserve a time slot during the event to briefly present the EIT Digital Alumni Foundation and promote our contact channels (https://alumni.eitdigital.eu and @digitalumni on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter)

  • Encourage participants to post about the event on their personal social media accounts and tag @digitalumni

  • Food and beverages can be arranged by yourself or delivered directly at the event. You can rely on the CLC contacts to find some adequate catering services. Snacks, light food and soft drinks are recommended. Please consider the dietary needs of your audience (e.g. vegetarian, lactose-free, etc.) when planning for food

  • During the event, take some high-quality pictures that you can send later to the board. If condition allows, record videos of talks (especially for topics that are interesting or worth-spreading to a larger audience like these)

  • If possible, gather feedback concerning the event from your audience before they leave. Alternatively, prepare a feedback form and send them the link, so they can fill it out right at the end of the event

Print out this Checklist to make sure you do not forget anything. If needed, you can always ping the Events Officer via email at events.alumni@eitdigital.eu

 

After the event

Send a short summary via email to events.alumni@eitdigital.eu, or fill out the form available HERE

Send a "Thank you" email to the speaker(s), participants, sponsors and supporters. If the event requires a follow-up (like presentation slides or feedback form), this will be the perfect time to include such information.

Delete or anonymize the list of participants or any other files containing personal data, for GDPR compliance. You can still keep general statistics like total number of attendees.

Send your pictures and videos via email to events.alumni@eitdigital.eu. Alternatively, you can also upload them to WeTransfer or GPhotos and send us the link.

 

Financial reporting and expense reimbursements

The Alumni foundation will reimburse costs associated to logistics (e.g. venue or facility rentals), speakers’ participation, catering and event materials after completion of the event.

Reimbursement has to be requested via the Rydoo application. Take HQ photos of the receipts and upload them, but do not get rid of the original paper invoices until the Treasurer approves your expense report.

 

Sponsorships

Opportunities to get event sponsors or establish longer-term collaborations are very valuable to us. We encourage you to scout for sponsorships, as long as it is beneficial to both parties. Hypothetically, sponsors can support in kind (via catering or venue) or in cash. On the other hand, companies partnering with the EIT Digital Alumni can benefit from the following aspects:

  • Brand awareness

  • Direct contact with our pool of highly-qualified talents

  • Identifying potential partners

  • Identifying prospective job applicants and future employees

  • Positive public relations

  • Exposure to an EU institutional network

Contact the Alumni Board if you require any promotional or communications material for sponsors.

 

Supporting links and tools

Here the recap of the tools listed in the Guidelines above:

Feel free to send to events.alumni@eitdigital.eu any comments, feedback and suggestions on how to improve our events (and these guidelines) further.

 

Last updated: 02. August 2019