MCM Expo Group organises the UK and Ireland’s largest and most anticipated pop culture experience, MCM Comic Con – which takes place annually in London, Manchester, Glasgow and Birmingham.
The sought after 3 day event attracts a broad scope of fans each year, promising an array of exciting attractions including celebrity speakers and photo opportunities with special guests, PopAsia, Comic Village, Cosplay Central, MCM stages, Steampunk, MCM Fringe Festival, and as expected, an abundance of stalls where visitors can buy collectibles, anime, trading cards, manga, DVDs, games, comics and toys.
Managing “The Doors”
With the number of MCM attendees skyrocketing to as many as 474,000 each year, you can imagine the importance of implementing a seamless system for managing “the doors” across all four locations.
With the event divided into separate arenas and areas, being able to capture data such as the volume of those who entered, left, re-entered, etc. at any given time is vital in informing forecasting, capacity and safety for future MCM events.
The issue for MCM Expo Group was the lack of portability. Staff were using barcode scanners, these were attached to laptops that were plugged into mains due to the devices simply not lasting the full work day. This subsequently hindered productivity levels with the inability to be mobile.
In order to fulfill their streamlined processes, MCM Expo Group approached Conker with the following requirements:
- A mobile handheld device that could read barcodes from paper tickets and mobile phone screens
- The capability to scan high volumes whilst maintaining productivity
- Ease-of-use for contract staff who might be unfamiliar with such devices, carrying out repetitive scanning
- Durability to withstand being dropped or knocked at a busy event where lots is going on
As standard, Conker took MCM Expo Group through its consultative process; we got to know what the device would be used for, who the end user would be, the setting it would be in and what success would look like for MCM Expo Group.
The solution was an IP65 rated handheld mobile device with an integrated 2D barcode reader and Quad-core processor for high scan volumes of both paper and E-ticket data.
Its IP65 rating ensured it could survive its work environment; having been drop tested from 1.2 metres on to concrete, impervious to dust and water resistance. The handheld Android barcode scanner also featured a hand strap and space to fit a lanyard for ease-of-use.
Breakdown times reduced by over 75%
“The (Conker mobile devices) were purchased as a replacement for our ageing set up based around laptops with external barcode scanners. Although relatively bulky for a phone they are fairly compact for a ruggedised unit and easy to hold and use. Because of their large battery they easily last a working day meaning we no longer have to run power to each unit making them truly mobile. This allows us to work in much smaller spaces, as there is no need to assemble shell walling to safely run power. This makes us much more flexible in our set up and best of all it reduces our setup and breakdown times by over 75%.
“We had many compliments by promo companies who provided staff for our entry systems on how well people got along with the units as opposed to iPad or Tablet based set ups as when using them for hours on end they are just less convenient to hold. And as we named all our devices our promo staff actually get competitive and somewhat possessive over their scanning units as they have fun using them.
Overall we couldn’t be any happier… they are reasonably priced, relatively compact, lightweight and do the job well. Best of all, none of our promo staff has managed to break one yet!”
-Johan Sijbesma, MCM Expo Group