Some 93 percent of respondents to the Special Events “2017 Event Rental Industry” forecast say they will handle the same number or more events this year than they did in 2016.

A total of 64 percent of respondents say they will handle more events this year than they did in 2016. This is, however, a downshift from the robust 80 percent who told Special Events they would oversee more events in 2016 than they did in 2015.

Some 62 percent of respondents say they will handle more business/corporate events in 2017, while 29 percent expect this segment to remain the same. A total of 53 percent of respondents expect revenue from social/private events to increase in 2017 while 35 percent expect it to remain the same and 9 percent are unsure.

The greatest challenges facing the industry? The No. 1 reply, listed by 45 percent of respondents, is the labor shortage/lack of skilled labor. No. 2, listed by 43 percent of respondents, is increasing costs in the face of pressure to hold down rates. And No. 3, listed by 38 percent of respondents, is shorter lead times. (Multiple replies are possible.)

How to adapt to the new business environment? The No. 1 reply, listed by 73 percent of respondents, will be to pursue new clients. No. 2 on the list will be to increase marketing efforts, and No. 3 will be to add new inventory.

Read the full story—including 10 years of lookback data—in the Spring 2017 issue of Special Events. Not a subscriber? We can fix that; just click here.