Conference organiser’s handbook
You’re spent, you can hardly think, the very idea of a conference makes you puke, and you tend to concentrate on everything that went wrong. Welcome to the conference aftermath.
Fortunately there’s little left to do. Nobody expects anything from the conference organisation the weekend after, so take your time to sleep in long. You’ve deserved it.
In the aftermath there are three items on the agenda:
Usually I prepare the Thank You mails before the conference so that I only have to press Send on the Monday or Tuesday after.
Take the list you created during the evaluation, make a clear, concise document out of it, and send it to everyone who was involved in any part of the conference. Sometimes you’ll get valuable feedback to your feedback. Make sure the updated document is available for next year.
The bills take a while longer, unfortunately. The venue will usually not send its bill immediately on Monday — it’ll come somewhere during the next three weeks or so. Besides, you don’t have the money to pay it yet because you still have to get the credit card money from your ticket sales system vendor.
Expect the administrative aftermath to take another month or so. Not that it’s very difficult or even time-consuming, but it’s annoying that you can’t calculate your profit (or loss) exactly for such a long time.
If you have recorded the sessions, put the videos online. Sometimes you should see the videos not as free material to be shared as soon as possible, but as marketing material for next year’s conference. In that case, keep the bulk of your videos for release when ticket sales for the next conference has started. Still, you should probably publish one or two sessions as soon as possible: people expect it.
During all this, take the time to congratulate yourself and your fellow organisers. You’ve succesfully organised your first conference, and it’s likely you’re already thinking about next year.