A look behind the scenes of OSC19

By Erik Harden, BWC Public Information Officer

In a week, the Ohio Safety Congress & Expo (2019) will be here. However, much of the planning and preparation to bring OSC19 to thousands of attendees started almost a year ago.

In May 2018, just two months after wrapping up OSC18, we kickstarted OSC19 with a call for presentation proposals from local and national safety and health experts. Around this same time, more than 200 volunteers on 35 committees also began meeting to develop educational sessions for this year’s event.

These committees represent subjects ranging from ergonomics and industrial hygiene to small businesses and workforce diversity. The industry experts on these committees allow us to develop sessions highlighting newsworthy issues such as the impact of the opioid epidemic on the workplace to cutting-edge research and development in safety and health.

By late August, staff from our Division of Safety & Hygiene and Communications Division created OSC19’s “Connecting YOU to Safety & Health” theme and design after many brainstorming meetings and discussions. Each year, we center our marketing campaign, promotional materials and on-site signage around a unified look and message.

Safety congress is well-known for its Expo Marketplace for good reason. Every year, we work diligently to attract new and interesting vendors offering the latest products and services for keeping Ohio’s workforce safe and healthy. For the fifth straight year, we’ve sold all the vendor space on the expo floor – well over 200 exhibitors will be on hand this year.

Additionally, our staff negotiates with local hotels to ensure there is affordable lodging for attendees. We work with the convention center on logistics, room assignments, etc. several months in advance. Within six months of the event, we have secured dynamic speakers for the general sessions, recruited educational session instructors and applied for a variety of continuing education credits.

Attendees also play a huge role in planning the following year’s event. Every year we ask attendees to complete a customer satisfaction survey. We use the results and feedback from the survey to make sure we are continuously updating and improving the event.

All the planning, preparation and commitment from staff and volunteers results in an event we’re proud of, and one that makes Ohio a safer place to work and live. We look forward to connecting with YOU at OSC19.

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