Protecting our environment and caring for the communities that depend on it… these things are no longer a matter of choice. And as event organizers impose ever-stricter sustainability standards, the demand for ecologically and socially-responsible suppliers is very much on the rise.
But how, as a prospective client, do you go about finding partners who meet your standards? And how, as a responsible venue or event supplier, can you boost your profile as a sustainable supplier? As the world's fastest growing events platform, we are all about bringing the right people together. Which is why we've developed a solution in the form of a new sustainability label exclusive for the events industry. The eventplanner.eco label is expected go live in 2025. You can however already start preparing now!
With so many different and often confusing eco and sustainability labels for specific niches like venues, caterers, etc. there is a genuine need for a simpler and more uniform approach that covers the entire event industry. To make it easier for prospects to demand the same level of compliance from all their event suppliers. And when you realise that the complex and often costly certification process of existing labels places them beyond the reach of smaller businesses, there is also a need for a more accessible and democratic alternative. At least, that is the feedback we've received from thousands of eventplanner.net users. And our answer? A new, overarching sustainability label for the entire event industry: eventplanner.eco
In order to qualify for the eventplanner.eco label, event venues and suppliers need to:
- comply with all mandatory criteria (indicated with (!) )
- commit to following a minimum number of sustainability guidelines (indicated with (v) )
- pledge to the eventplanner.eco charter. The charter will be published later.
- in year one a minimum of 75% of all points (mandatory & other guidelines compared) are required, after year 3 you'll need 80% and after 6 years 85% or more.
Certification is based on a statement on honour, sample audits, publication of the statement and feedback loops by customers to flag in-compliance.
Please note that certification criteria can and will be updated on a regular base making eventplanner.eco more ambitious and extensive over time.
- Have an eventplanner.net business page (the certificate will be linked to the page), regardless of being a free or premium version. (A certification is needed per business page. For example a business managing multiple venues will need a label per venue. If more than 5 labels are required and requested at the same time, volume discounts apply.)
- Pay the audit fee and yearly contribution to the eventplanner.eco initiative.
- Agree with the legal policy.
- The eventplanner.eco label must be displayed in a prominent place at the event venue (plaque) or offices in case of a event supplier and on the website (widget with link to more information and the full audit report). With each online reference to the label a link will be placed to the full audit report.
- Certificate will be valid for 3 years after which a re-audit is needed to prolong the certificate. It's the requestors responsibility to do a re-audit whenever his situation changes and cannot meet any of the pledged commitments anymore. Audits and re-audits will always be done with the latests version of the criteria published by eventplanner.net (so it is possible requirements will be stricter over time, adding additional guidelines and/or make other guidelines mandatory).
- All communication and documentation should be in English.
- Agree the report will be published in all transparancy.
An audit fee is payable upon application, as well as a small annual contribution to the program. The fees below are indicative and can still be changed.
- 350 euro audit fee (initial and re-audits)
- 250 euro yearly contribution to the initiative
What do you get?
- Free plaque with the eventplanner.eco logo (only with initial certification, not on re-audits)
- Yearly digital certificate (on your eventplanner.net business page + widget to put on your own website)
- Filter on the eventplanner.net search engine + additional promotion in the eventplanner.eco categorie
- Use of the eventplanner.eco logo, in respect with the brand guidelines
Certification is too easy?
The certification is low entry, both in procedure as in price. That is 'by design'. Having the perfect sustainable business is of course something to strive for, but at this moment not (yet) realistic for every business. In stead of having a hand full of venues and suppliers certified and achieving no impact on the industry as a whole, our mission is to make a dent in the universe by inspiring event businesses, organisers and clients. In that perspective planting the seed in many heads by making a label achievable and starting a real mind change is the goal. That doesn't mean we're very serious about our mission, we have implemented feedback loops to act promptly on any misuse and communicate about it as transparently as announcing the qualification itself. We'll also commit to raising the bar gradually, but in a consistent way over the next years.
Will there be 'levels'?
We won't offer 'levels', but we'll make it possible to search for suppliers who for example score 90% or higher, this to give additional exposure to the best in class. We're also thinking about adding functionality later to search on specific topics (for example if ecology of diversity is more important for an organiser than other topics we cover).
Please note the below criteria are still under review and can still be changed before the official eventplanner.eco launch. Especially the number of points for each criteria is being reviewed by our stakeholders and partners. Your feedback and help on improving the criteria or making them more extensive is warmly welcomed.