The dreaded ‘no show’ or last-minute cancellation is the bane of every event organiser, but a new app, Symlee, is hoping to change all that and help a range of charities in the process.
Founder and CEO Skye Butler developed Smylee as an event organisation app, and was also conscious that human connection in the pandemic era was more important than ever. On top of that, she’d witnessed the negative impact a growing trend in guests not turning up was having on event hosts.
“Humans need to interact – it’s part of our DNA. This is the very essence of Smylee,” she said.
“Supporting a healthy mind and human connection is at the forefront of what we do, whilst also providing a way to give back. We stand for making people feel valued through positive interactions.”
Butler conducted research that found 80% of people felt social unreliability is an increasing issue and set out to move the dial on the problem.
“Smylee’s ethos is built on a genuine passion to support people who value meaningful and reliable face-to-face connections,” Butler said.
“We’re about flipping cultural norms on their head. That it’s cool to be reliable, not to wait for the best offer before you RSVP to an event. That cancelling is not ok. That respect and being kind to each other is on trend.”
She built Smylee as an events app to deal with everything from run sheets with timings to guest details and dietary requirements, along with scheduled event reminders, and an automated check-in process for anyone attending. Butler also added a ratings system to keep tabs on the reliability of guests.
And while unavoidable, last-minute disasters can intervene, Smylee allows guests to make amends by donating to charity if they can’t attend.
Several well-known Australian charities have partnered with Smylee, including Sea Shepherd,
ReachOut, Oxfam New Zealand, OzHarvest, and the Starlight Children’s Foundation.
All function guests have to do is pledge to make a tax deductible donation if they’re a no show. Of course they can donate anyway and there’s an in-built ‘pledge counter’ with running totals for donations to each charity.
Ironically for Butler, she planned to launch Smylee at an event in Sydney this week, but was thwarted by the city’s COVID-19 lockdown. But that made her even more determined to press ahead.
The Smylee app is available on Google Play, the App Store or at smylee.com.au.