Frequently Asked Questions

We want to make sure that you’re prepared for this year’s conference experience, so we've created the frequently asked questions below.

How will I remain safe at the conference this year with Covid-19-related concerns?

A. Your well-being is the Society’s No. 1 priority. SMPS is committed to implementing intentional processes to help protect your health and peace of mind while participating in the conference. JW Marriott has also rolled out extensive health and safety protocols for their own staff and all guests and attendees at their property. This includes a touchless process from checking in to checking out. For more information on what those are, please click on the following link where all safety parameters are provided from the Marriott International CEO here:

  • Have more safety-related questions? Feel free to reach out to and a representative will respond within 24 hours.

I made hotel reservation(s) for the original Build Business August 2020 dates. Now that the dates have changed to October 2020, how will I update my hotel reservation(s)?

A. If you made reservations at the host hotel JW Marriott, your reservation for the Build Business 2020 block will be moved to the October 2020 dates. You should have received an email confirmation from JW Marriott confirming that a change has been made to your existing hotel room reservation (this was completed the week of June 8 – 12, 2020).

  • Still have questions about your hotel reservation? Please reach out to Sunshine Citko, group housing manager of the JW Marriott Austin, via email or phone: (512) 608-4175 or SMPS is not responsible for the room block transfers or cancellations for specific needs. You will need to speak directly with Sunshine at the hotel (JW Marriott) for any adjustments to your hotel reservations.
  • For all hotel cancellation policies, please refer to the JW Marriott’s policies here:
    • You may cancel your reservation at no additional charge with the JW Marriott until 48 hours prior to the day of arrival. Please note that a fee of one night’s room and tax will be charged if you must cancel after this deadline. If you have made a pre-payment, the JW Marriott will retain all or part of your pre-payment. If not, the JW Marriott will charge your credit card.

I registered for Build Business 2020, but I cannot attend in October. Can I get a refund?

A. Yes, please refer to our cancellation policy below:

  • Cancellation Policy: Cancellations must be received by August 28, 2020. To receive your refund, please send your cancellation request to Denise Schjenken at

My firm/organization is on a travel ban through 2020, and I cannot attend the rescheduled dates in October 2020. Is there a way that I can attend virtually instead?

A. A virtual program is currently not scheduled for this conference. Should this change, please email us at with your contact information so that you can be notified of any event updates. If you have questions regarding your conference registration, please email

I’d still like to attend, but there’s a travel ban within the state I reside in. What options do I have in attending Build Business 2020?

A: Safety is our utmost concern for all attendees and those who are traveling with their families. We do not encourage you to ignore your state’s specific policies on travel, and we request that you make the best judgment call for your protection and safety.

Q: I was looking forward to attending the Build Business conference in August. Why did the date change to October?

A: The safety concerns for SMPS members, attendees, and staff prompted our decision to postpone the conference to a later date as well as the venue capacity restrictions in August. Many businesses are projected to reopen this summer, which will provide a more solidified showcase of safety-measure procedures for the overall meeting experience in the fall.

We look forward to seeing you in Austin in October!