How these guys built one of the industry’s most robust global meeting services networks, overnight.
If you have met Todd and Andy, you know they are go getters, and great at client service. That service also extends to their vendor partners. After celebrating AMI’s 15th year servicing clients, and 25+ years each in the meeting services industry, they decided to leverage their vendors into one global network, making it easier for their planners and suppliers to interact and connect. That’s where the work began. They built out a secure system tied to all other AMI systems, branded it the American Meetings Network, and it took off! “The goal of the network is to allow AMI’s planners and service providers to interact and connect in a social, Facebook-like, infrastructure. We also allow each industry supplier to build a directory listing to market themselves to all of our planners and to each other. It’s simple, free, intuitive and actually pretty cool”, says AMI’s CMO, Bludworth.
Once the official launch of the network took place, AMI consolidated its 500+ meeting planners and travel directors and over 5,000 registered service providers into the network interface. Overnight, it simplified the sourcing, staffing of events, and compliance tracking. “One of the biggest benefits for our internal operations group was something we hadn’t even though of initially, says Kelly Cabitt, Senior Vice President of Compliance and Internal Operations. It became clear, very early in the development process, that the network greatly improved ways to track Tier 2 spend of small, disadvantaged, woman owned, minority, LGBT and veteran owned businesses, something with which we are much focused.”
The network has been up and running for almost two years, bringing in new and talented providers worldwide. From restaurants in Tokyo, training centers in Beijing and the newest hotels in New York City, the network continues to grow every day. So what’s next for the network? The guys have something up their sleeves and are not quite sharing, just yet. But they say it’s big and great for clients. Hopefully, we won’t have to wait too long to see!
Principle & Founders CEO, Andy McNeill and CMO, Todd Bludworth