GES’s New Flex Talent Pool Program Aims to Put Exhibitions Professionals Back to Work

January 26, 2021

With many trade show professionals still unemployed due to COVID-19, one full-service marketing and logistics partner for the global exhibition and convention industry is taking matters into its own hands with a new program designed to get them back on the job. Launched Jan. 25, GES’s industry-wide Flex Talent Pool program has been designed to provide flexible, temporary work opportunities for experienced and talented trade show personnel in 2021 and beyond.

In anticipation of exhibitions starting up again this year, the new program will be first introduced in the United States and will cover key cities and venues where shows are expected to occur, according to Jeff Quade, GES’ executive vice president of exhibitions.

“We created this program in anticipation of exhibitions returning in 2021,” Quade said. “As shows and events begin to come back safely, we want to prioritize work opportunities for those talented and skilled trade show and live event professionals that have been so pivotal to the success of our industry.”

Quade added that the program’s goal is to join forces with other leading industry suppliers to offer exhibition professionals broader opportunities for flexible employment. Meanwhile, GES is partnering with Epic Personnel, a third-party staffing agency, to help recruit, on-board and manage the Flex Talent Pool. 

Individuals with operational and exhibitor services experience in key industry markets will initially be sought on a show-by-show basis to provide administrative as well as supervisory support for all showsite operations, including freight, electrical, logistics and decorating services.

All qualified and experienced exhibition talent, including former GES employees, will be paid on par with market expectations, with paid travel provided when required, Quade added. 

While temporary work for professionals will be a welcome opportunity to get back in the game, what will be the chances of turning these gig workers into full-time employees at GES?

“Business demand in 2021 is still uncertain, therefore, we implemented a method that will allow us to flex up and down as business needs necessitate,” Quade said. “Of course, when shows return at large scale and business demands ramp up again, we are always eager to hire great talent.”

At this time, the Flex Talent Pool program is accepting applications for Texas, Florida, Louisiana and Georgia. To learn more and to register, go here


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Partner Voices

As event professionals and destinations adjust, adapt and evolve in these uncharted waters, it is imperative that substantial resources be put in place for all of the people responsible for planning and executing trade shows, expositions and conventions. An example is Mohegan Sun, which built an industry-leading, COVID-19 Resource Center with a combination of pictures from recently held successful events (the property reopened on May 1, 2020) along with several widely available and informative documents, such as an evolving operational framework: