As pc/nametag's in-house Word Wizard, Meaghan creates educational content that brings people together and drives meaningful conversations in the events industry.
Attending a conference, workshop, training or seminar is the perfect way to gain new knowledge, meet like-minded professionals, expand your skillset and expose yourself to new perspectives in your field. However, while you may see the benefits of attending an event, getting the “thumbs up” from management may take a bit of convincing.
Your manager needs to know your justifications for attending, plus the costs of travel, lodging, time away from work, and other expenses associated with the event. The next time you find an event you’d like to attend, use the tips within this article to get your boss on board with letting you attend.
- ⌛ Short on time? Download our free, pre-written conference justification letter.
How to Write a Conference Justification Letter: 6 Steps
1. List key event details and information.
An event justification letter should always start with a brief overview of the event. This will give your manager a solid understanding of the event and why it appeals to you.
Keep things simple by copying and pasting a description of the event from their website or social media pages. Don’t forget to note the event's location, dates, and attendance options (virtual, hybrid, in-person, etc).
If your event has a great reputation, let them know! Communicate the importance of this conference. If you know of any prominent organizations that plan to attend the conference, make a note of this in your letter. Not only will you build credibility, but you'll highlight brands your manager is familiar with.
2. Explain the benefits of attending the event.
While events are fun, your leadership team is more interested in knowing how your attendance will benefit you and the organization. Not sure what to write? Start with the following list of great examples of how attending a conference is beneficial to all stakeholders involved:
- Find new vendors, suppliers, and business partnerships
- Discover the latest technology solutions and industry trends
- Meet with exhibitors and vendors for in-person discussions
- Learn best practices from keynote speakers and breakout sessions
- Identify techniques for meeting today’s growing guest demands
- Make memories as you network and build relationships with peers
3. Describe ways you'll earn continuing education credits for attending (if applicable).
For many employees, seeking continuing education (CE) credits or continuing education units (CEU) is a necessary part of remaining competitive in their field of work. Luckily, continuing education resources and training can be a lot of fun, especially if you can receive them by attending a conference or seminar.
If the conference you have your eyes on offers CEU credits for attending, make this known to your employer. This benefit can greatly improve your chances of getting funding to sign-up for your event.
4. Emphasize peer networking and partnership-building opportunities.
Whether your goal is to forge new business relationships or develop your personal career, events are a great place to make interpersonal connections with people in your industry. In your letter, highlight that attending the event could help you obtain new clients, source better vendors, gain new perspectives or form successful partnerships with other brands through business networking.
Conferences are the perfect place to build your professional network, attend networking events and hand out business cards. Let your employer know that you intend to share your perspectives and return with new ones, which you can share with the rest of the team once you return.
Jess O'Dell, Tradeshow and Sponsorship Manager, pc/nametag
5. Highlight career development opportunities.
Exploring your career interests is important. This is how you discover your personal talents and ensure that your skills align with your values and preferences. Attending industry-related workshops or conferences can help you gain an understanding of what you enjoy most about your field.
Your letter should mention that attending this event will expose you to new disciplines and research within your industry. This information will improve your professional development and help you reach your career goals. While most conferences revolve around a single topic, chances are that you’ll find the perfect opportunity to explore different sub-fields you may not have known about before.
6. Note ticket pricing, travel expenses, and early-bird discounts for the conference.
The cost of registration is only one part of the overall expense to attend a conference. Be upfront and concise with how much it will cost for you to go to your event, including the cost of food, lodging, airfare, gas mileage, and other expenses. Remember to mention any expenses that are included in the cost of your event registration in your letter. For instance, make a note if meals, activities, or any other perks are covered with your ticket purchase.
Download Your Event Justification Letter Template
We know that convincing your boss to let you attend an event may seem nerve-wracking. Our greatest advice is to focus on event ROI and how attending will yield a great return for your organization.
How to Demonstrate the Value of a Conference:
- Emphasize how the experience will help you expand your skill set as a professional.
- Mention how the relationships you’ll form could lead to new clients, partnerships, and opportunities.
- Note how the event will help you promote the company’s mission and create brand awareness.
- Offer to prepare a presentation or write-up on what you learned to share with colleagues.
With a little persuasive writing, you’ll be on your way toward convincing your manager of the value and rewards you’ll gain from attending your seminar.
If you’re looking for help writing an attendee justification letter, we are here to help. Event planning professionals and attendees alike can use the following letter layout to improve their chances of attending (or creating) a successful event that draws a wide variety of audiences. For event planners, dispersing this template can be an integral part of your event marketing plan.