Following last week's Elite user conference in San Diego, we have received the following feedback from Elite and from one of our correspondents who also attended the event…

Elite say: “The 2009 Elite User Conference – Extend Your Advantage – has just finished up in San Diego, CA at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront. Even with the challenging economic times, Elite’s conference has seen impressive attendance rates with registration numbers twice as high as their competitors’ conferences. The buzz at this year’s conference was around the five firms that have gone live on 3E in the past 60 days and the wave of new 3E deals recently signed.

“The specialized boot camps and hands-on detailed sessions were a huge success, allowing attendees to get the targeted information they need about the products their firm uses. This was the first year Elite offered the specialized Boot Camps which focused on learner-centered training and experiential learning. Separate tracks were provided for new and experienced users allowing trainers to focus on the appropriate level of education needed.

“Attendees had the opportunity to network with their peers and colleagues from all over the world, including the Elite senior management team who were available for meetings throughout the conference. A few other highlights included regional and product-specific user group meetings, a jammed Exhibit Hall, and a Learning Lab staffed with subject matter experts on all of Elite’s applications.”

Our correspondent says: “Having attended both the Aderant and Elite conferences, I can say that Elite did have twice as many people as Aderant. Here comes the “comma However”… There were a lot more Elite staff at the conference, probably three or four times more than Aderant had (perhaps due to the close proximity to LA). An attendee to staff ratio would be interesting to see. The Elite delegate attendee numbers were noticeably lower than the past years, but given the economic times, not at all surprising.
 
“A similar comment was made by several different people from various firms: They wished that Elite had not scheduled the boot-camp classes during the conference. Many folks would have attended both and felt that they had to make a choice that left them wanting a bit more. Seems Elite could have placed the conference and boot-camp back to back and perhaps enjoyed reaping the benefits of two revenue streams.
 
“Several firms came to see the Allen & Overy dog and pony show and get private time to question them on their project. The A&O crew were well prepared. They had a well though-out presentation that answered loads of questions and seemed honest about the effort that was involved. They then had a packed schedule of face-to-face meetings with potential and current 3E clients. I think they may have been the most booked people at conference. The sales staff owes them a free holiday for their efforts!
 
“All in all a good conference, even thought the location left a little to be desired. Nice new hotel with state of the art conference facilities but the location (just next to a huge goods yard and military vehicle depot) left a little to be desired…”