The annual Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) showcases simulation, education, modeling and training technology for the exchange of information among industry, the military, and the educational communities. I/ITSEC is organized and sponsored by NTSA.
But, how do you share the value of this event with your board or supervisor in order to help justify your attendance?
We've gathered some tools and articles to help you "make your case" for your attendance. Feel free to cut, paste, paraphrase to suit your particular situation or needs.
Some things to consider to justify the travel and training expense:
- Focus on what you will specifically bring back to the organization as return for the investment.
- Offer to prepare and deliver a short presentation and Q&A to your colleagues to share what you learned. That way others in your unit will also get the benefits of your attendance.
- Share the Program Agenda and Program Guide with your colleagues. As an attendee, you will have access to all papers and abstracts, available online at the Knowledge Repository (2018 papers and previous years are located at www.iitsecdocs.com).
- If you are working to obtain or maintain your Certified Modeling and Simulation Professional (CMSP) or other professional designation, remind your supervisor that this is a great way to earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or Continuous Learning Points (CLPs).
- Be ready with a plan that shows who will cover for you while you are attending the conference.
- Be sure to check out the registration page where all the various rates are listed to see if you qualify for any of the lower rates or discounts.
Quantifying the Benefits
Although you might understand the benefits of I/ITSEC, your manager may not. Therefore, to be most effective in justifying the conference, you need to clearly articulate the connection between your organization's knowledge requirements and the I/ITSEC program. DO NOT assume that your manager will be able to automatically make those distinctions.
Use the Expense Calculator (above) to develop a cost estimate for attending I/ITSEC.
Many benefits from I/ITSEC attendance are hard to quantify. For example, experts agree that the top benefit of conference attendance is networking value. Where else can you find so many contacts facing the same issues as your organization? Are there solutions you're not aware of?
When you present your request for I/ITSEC, focus on what you will specifically bring back to the organization as payback for the investment.
Some specific details you may want to identify include:
- Session content – What sessions have particular relevance to your organizations work? You'll want to specify relevant Tutorials, Special Events, Papers and/or Workshops. The full agenda is usually set and posted by early Fall.
- Vendor contacts – Will the conference showcase vendors with tools you use or are evaluating for potential future use? Is this an opportunity during which you'll be able to compare competing tools?
Have you seen other examples of material that could be adapted for I/ITSEC? Perhaps you have developed a packet that may be useful to your fellow attendees? See a gap that we could help fill? Let us know and we'll be glad to add to the information posted here.
This page is meant to provide information for attendees, though some of the material is relevant for Exhibitors as well. For more Exhibitor related material, please see exhibits.iitsec.org.