Planning a successful abstract submission process

  1. Plan Ahead

    It may sound obvious but it is amazing how often we get asked to set up on-line abstract submission at the last minute. It's a good idea to contact us at least a month before the call for papers goes out. This will give you time to fill out the questionnaire and check the set-up and more importantly give your committee a chance to go through the process and give their feedback - and committees being what they are that can take time!
  2. Do one thing at a time

    Finish with abstract submission before you start the reviewing process or you will have authors amending abstracts while they are being graded. Try to avoid staggered deadlines, e.g. one date for posters and one date for oral presentations. Give yourself some slippage time around the deadlines if you think your authors will need it and plan accordingly.
  3. Keep it simple

    Are the questions on the submission form obvious and does the choice of answers fit with the question? Will the authors understand the terms and definitions that you have used? And is each question really necessary - for example, do you need the authors to enter keywords when nowadays it's so easy for users to do a full-text search?
  4. Think about the data

    How will you be using the data that our system captures? For example, if you don't really need tables, diagrams and pictures in the abstracts you can go with our text-only option - it's easier for the authors, gives you more control over the process and you can produce a fully formatted draft abstract book at any time. And what if you want authors to choose up to two categories for their abstract? Make that two separate questions, first choice and second choice - it will help you sort things out later.
  5. Get the authors to help build your conference structure

    Have the authors select an appropriate category or track for their abstract. You can use this to assign the abstracts to reviewers and it will also help you to group the abstracts in the conference.
  6. Choose the right number of reviewers

    Remember that you will have to manage your reviewers and make sure that they do the grading on time so you don't want too many. But if you have too few you will overload them with a huge number of abstracts to grade and they'll do the job badly. We recommend a target of 20-40 abstracts per reviewer.
  7. Make full use of our add-ons

    Our standard pack has everything you need to run your online abstract submission but sometimes you need a little more. We can set you up for multistage submission, allow authors to view their grades, build an online conference programme and much more. For details go to the Orderpage of this site.
  8. Above all... ask us

    Over the years we have helped with almost 2,000 conferences so there are very few situations that we have not come across again and again. If you are having problems with your online abstract submission, drop us an email - we can usually suggest a solution.