Impact Of COVID-19 On The Event Industry In India And The Measures Being Taken
The pandemic, COVID-19 or Coronavirus that has in the last few weeks shaken the world over needs no introduction. The widespread fear that it has instilled in each and every one of us is proof enough of its malicious affect.
While it is not unknown that the virus has brought the whole world to a standstill, the negative impact it has had on almost every industry has long crossed the safety margin with companies now incurring losses in millions of dollars.
With stock markets plummeting at a rate never before seen, the markets are at its worst at the moment. The impact it has had on the economy can be best explained using the domino effect.
With some of the bigger companies encouraging their employees to work from home, there is a decrease in the users of public transport as well as the private cab companies.
The hotel industry has also taken a huge blow as business has fallen beyond repair in the last few months.
The aviation industry is another major industry that has lost a substantial amount of business with international flights being cancelled and border security becoming stricter.
Local vendors are facing the brunt of the lack of public interaction as most of the people are now resorting to online purchases, for even the basic essentials.
Impact of COVID-19 on the Event Industry
The Event Industry is probably one of the most highly affected industries given the nature of its services.
Human interaction is an inevitable aspect of any event and with the onset of the Coronavirus, the most important precaution to be taken is to avoid contact with other human beings as much as possible.
This in itself brings the whole industry to a halt. Events are being cancelled and refunds demanded putting event managers in an absolute financial dilemma. Vendors are expecting payments and employees need to be paid.
The financial fallout is probably one of the most severe as seen by the industry as a whole in recent times.
Apart from the financial consequences being faced there is also the issue of quality vs rate. In the hope of sustaining their business, some may compromise on the quality of their service while offering low prices.
This not only breaches the restriction imposed on social/public gatherings but also adversely affects the brand image of the company.
Coronavirus : Solutions That Benefits The Event Community On The Whole In Lockdown Situation
Very recently, on the 12th of March, 2020, members of the KEMA- Karnataka Event Management Association, held a meeting at the Leela Palace to discuss the current scenario and how to best handle the situation.
Present at the meeting were some of the biggest names of the Indian Event Industry,
Geo Thomas – Acme; Sanjeev – Scorpio; Barni – Wizcraft; Zubair – Zzeh; Amit – Scotch & Water and Arvind – Zeroin were the key speakers for the day.
Some of the key outcomes of this meeting were:
- The uncertainty of the time period identified with the virus is one of the biggest challenges at the moment. An estimate of 2-3 months has been set but could even extend upto 6 months depending on the measures taken to curb the rise in the number of cases worldwide
- Strict measures are being taken to ensure that the employees are as safe and healthy as possible. With events being cancelled, it now calls for the perfect opportunity to engage the employees in training sessions keeping them up- to- date on the latest developments on the technological front.
- Given the drastic revenue crunch that companies will now be facing, cutting down on the employees’ salaries will have to be done. Apart from this, an anti poaching agreement has been created to maintain trust and loyalty amongst the KEMA members.
- In the future, to be protected from a dilemma of this magnitude, the board has decided to look into an insurance policy scheme that will safeguard the interests of their companies in times of crisis.
- While events across the globe are either being pushed to a later date or being cancelled altogether, the IIFA2020, the META Awards, the IPL and the Geneva Motor show just to name a few, event companies are catering to online events, making the most of the situation.
- While the means of financially battling this global crisis could come as a blow to the companies and most importantly to the employees and the clients, these are steps that need to be taken to ensure that the company will have a future in the industry.
- From charging a rejection fee to laying off and cutting down salaries, losses are being incurred by every section of the society irrespective of their social standing.
- The industry is hoping that in the wake of the passing of this epidemic, business will boom and they will be able to recover the losses incurred.
We as a community at large can only try and do our best to be aware and follow protocols for not only the sake of our own health but keeping in mind those who would not endure the virus if affected.
It is important to acknowledge the seriousness of the matter and how susceptible and vulnerable humankind is to medical research gone wrong. We have already witnessed the mass destruction it can cause and the crumbling of the life around us as we know of it.
Let us all take it in stride and work together to battle this calamity and resume living in a more sustainable and conscientious manner for not only our benefit but for the generations to come.
Stay safe and educate as many as possible!