Thursday, August 26, 2010

How to Plan a Corporate Conference

Trevor Richards

If you are looking to organise a conference then it is perfectly understandable that you would want to get it just right - but with so many elements to organise it can be difficult to know where to start. This is especially true if you are something of a novice when it comes to organising large events so here are some top tips that you will be able to use as a handy checklist.

Your choice of venue will be absolutely vital. Once you have established the theme of your conference this will help you to draw up a list of potential venues. It would be a good idea to contact each of these venues to get an idea of their prices however it would be much more effective if you were to actually visit the venues in person. This way you will be able to get an idea of their suitability in terms of size and what sort of facilities they offer. Speak to the staff, find out what catering and drinks services are available if any and ensure that the venues have the required equipment. If you are unsure as to what equipment you may need for a conference, items commonly used at these types of events are computers, projectors, projector screens, microphones and of course a sound system.

Depending on the size of the event, organising a conference can potentially be a huge undertaking, requiring many careful weeks of considered planning. It is important that every single detail is thought of in advance and that nothing is left to chance. As well as the location of the venue it is also vital that you consider the transport links that are available as well as any nearby parking. If there are people travelling a long way to get to your event then it is of course important that it is as easy to get to the venue as possible. You should ensure that there is adequate signage placed all around the venue so that attendees will be able to find conference rooms easily and quickly. This should also be true of any fire exits as you must of course take health and safety considerations into account. A venue with helpful and friendly staff on reception will also be very useful.

A couple of weeks before the event is due to take place it would be wise to send out a conference pack to each delegate. This should contain directions to the chosen venue as well as a car pass if required. You should also compile an itinerary for the day's events and include a delegate badge.
When you are in the initial stages planning your conference it is vital that you pick a suitable budget and stick to it. With these sorts of events it can be very easy to get carried away with your spending as there can be many unforeseen expenses so you may wish to adjust your budget accordingly. This sort of event planning can be a large job for one person to undertake so if you feel that the task may be a little overwhelming then it may be sensible to employ the services of a corporate event planning company. A simple internet search will bring up a list of companies in your area.

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