November 07th, 2017

CEO Special Report

CEO Special Report

Tad Zurlinden

Another milestone! EuRA’s new management system and website represent a big step forward and a significant investment in resources. I have to thank our new partners, OpenUp Media B.V. for the great job they have done integrating our systems and helping us to become future prof as we consider new reporting and training mechanisms for EuRA.

However with every new relationship comes the ending of an older, trusted one. We have worked with Designtec and Neil Burr for nearly 15 years and during that time, his team have kept us at the forefront of functionality and choosing to leave was not a decision taken lightly. But as we move forward with new projects such as our Indemnity insurance and RMC DSP Forum, we see the need to have a more robust reporting and sharing mechanism that will expand to fit members needs over the coming year.

We are all living in the shadow of recent cyber events and part of the new investment in our systems is to ensure that we are 100% compliant with new data regulations and potential hacking threats. As I’m sure you all know, the risks are great and the costs are high but our continuous investment in data security is unavoidable as an organisation dealing in online payments and secure data.

There is also new fun stuff in this new system. We have integrated our training systems that enable us to track an individuals progress. We have also streamlined the milestones for people undertaking the MIM certification programme and there is a full page outlining this change in the Education section of the website.

We are very much looking forward to welcoming our members across Africa and the Middle East to our Dubai Conference in November. We have a great programme lined up looking at the challenges and opportunities for business and mobility in the region and some great opportunities to network and have some fun in the desert. Our venue is the Jumeirah Creekside hotel, in the business district very near the airport and next door to The Irish Village, a great meeting place. Our final night party is limited to just 100 guests and will take place in the stunning Palace Downtown Hotel on a terrace overlooking the incredible Fountains of the Burj Khalifa. If you’ve been to the Bellagio brace yourself for the Dubai version.

We have just had the Board Meeting where we chose the session for the event from a shortlist of submissions made by members. Thanks to your creativity we have one of our strongest programmes ever.

Next year’s hotel is a stunning resort, in our opinion one of the most beautiful venues we have ever used. There are 250+ rooms in the main hotel and another 200+ in the village Residences. Check out The Leading Hotels of the World website for full details. The Residences offer one bedroom villas sleeping up to four people and two bedrooms sleeping up to six. These offer great value for money for colleagues attending together. Also, if you want your own private meeting space, each Residence, one or two bedroom comes with a fabulous sitting dining area and kitchen. Essentially they are mega suites and located in the hotel grounds, no more than a three minute walk from the main conference area. There are other hotels nearby, but not within walking distance, but with rates starting at €145 we have secured an amazing deal, especially for a hotel of this quality and one part of The Leading Hotels of the World group. I strongly advise early booking.


In Warsaw we had 670 delegates and in response to delegate feedback, we are limiting the event to 600 from now on. This means if you don’t book early, you may not secure a place, either at the conference or in the hotel.

We have made a significant change to the booking process. From now on, delegates will not be able to add guests to their online booking. You can still bring a guest, but will need to contact the team at EuRA HQ and do this as a separate booking. The reason for this is our increasing pressure to not turn delegates away. Every year you tell us not to make the conference any bigger and we will continue to limit numbers to 600. In the past, we have had delegates book guest packages for colleagues and this takes away a place for a genuine delegate. So now, please don’t hesitate to bring a guest who is not a colleague, but numbers are strictly limited and will only be allocated on a first come first served basis.

I look forward to seeing you!


This article first appeared in the EuRApean - Edition November 2017 

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