For any business planning to organise an event, whether it is a Networking morning, a Charity Fundraiser, Business Conference, or a full blown Exhibition, here are ten things you need to know:
- Who are you inviting?
What kind of businesses or individuals do you want to attend? This will make a real difference to where, when and how you organise it. It will also have an effect on the kinds of facilities you need to include, such as car parking, disabled facilities and refreshments.
- Have you given yourself enough time?
Before you set the date, think about where and how you will publicise the event. Magazines that come out every month, are always at least 2 months ahead, so you could miss publication if your event is less than 9 weeks away. Businesses may need to hold meetings to decide if they will attend, and these marketing meetings could be monthly, so give them enough time to plan for it.
- Who do you need to help on the day?
You may need ticket collectors, badge givers, Press attendance, First Aid attendance, caterers, raffle ticket sellers, Prizes, PA speakers, lighting, and volunteers, so make sure they all have enough time to go through their processes to be able to attend.
- Legal Requirements
Things like Health and Safety Regulations, capacity numbers for the venue, fire Insurance, Risk Assessments, First Aid attendance like St Johns Ambulance, Children’s Play areas need to be staffed by Council checked people, Access requirements for visitor, wheelchair access arrangements, interpreters, and exhibitors to unload etc.
Then there is photo or video consent forms if you plan to take photos of people at the event, (of course you CANNOT photograph or video any children) Event licences may be needed, to have money collections for Charity, or to use a venue or piece of land for a different purpose. These will need to be investigated from the Local Authority, and may take up to 3 months to fill in forms, and get approvals in place,
- Public Liability Insurance
Every event, however small and informal will need some kind of insurance cover – even a Church coffee morning will need this, so leave enough time to get quotes and set up a suitable policy for the day.
- Venue restrictions of regulations
The venue you choose, may have some restrictions attached to it, such as, Church halls are often not allowed to have alcohol on site, does it have free WIFI – your attendees may be relying on use of the internet for presentations, or Wi-Fi credit card machines, and have rules about capacity crowds for standing up or sitting down events. They may also not allow you to bring in your own catering, and you may have to use theirs.
This is a huge area, if you decide to have posters or flyers, these need time to design, print and then hand out, do you need to pay for newspaper ads to promote it? This will need to be budgeted
- On the day plans
On the big day, who will be in charge, who will open up, show people to the car park, give out maps, direct exhibitors to their stands, set up microphones, PowerPoint projection, microphones, and what time can they all get in? Don’t forget what time they are allowed to leave – you can’t have exhibitors packing up halfway through the afternoon or people carrying boxes in and out, while the public are still coming in.
- The big clear up
Check with the venue, do you need to clear up, or can you just walk out at the end? What are you expected to do? Should you take away rubbish bags, or can you leave them on site, what happens if someone breaks something? A table leg, or chair, or the projector? What happen if something goes missing?
- Use a Professional
It may make life much easier if you use an experienced event organiser to do all of this for you. There are many different things to think about when organising any event, from a social to a business meeting, or village fete or church coffee morning.
Here at Hi2 Events we can organize all this on your behalf, have a look at our recent events to get some ideas:
Business Exhibitions http://www.hi2events.co.uk/index.php?id=2
Conferences in the UK, or abroad: http://www.hi2events.co.uk/index.php?id=25
Foreign Travel Tours: http://www.hi2events.co.uk/index.php?id=48