Picture this – you have to source and manage a training venue quickly and you do not have a clue how to go about managing all the pieces in order to have a successful event? Is this you? Don’t worry. You are about to benefit from over a decade of my HR experience in this area. Here are 5 easy tips for sourcing and managing your next training venue.
- Know your budget and work within it. Know what you can afford and avoid luxuries and temptations!
- Check on accessibility to the venue via public transport, road links and parking
- Does the venue need to be near a corporate office? At times, it is necessary to use speakers at training
- events from the corporate office. If they have to travel too far for a 30 minute slot, this will put them off and be counter productive.
- If accommodation is necessary, you need to choose a venue near to the hotel where the participants are staying.
- Check on the number of toilets and other facilities – this is important in my view. The worst thing is having just a couple of stalls for 50 women!!!
- Endeavour to get meeting rooms with natural daylight
- Depending on the use of breakout rooms, considering designate an area in the plenary room as a breakout area to save costs
- When hosting outside events, such as a drinks reception, have a space available inside in case of inclement weather as a contingency plan
- Check there are no obstructions in the meeting room such as pillars – these can be annoying. If there is no alternative, adjust the layout to cause least distractions.
- Make sure there is adequate air circulation in the room but that the AC is not noisy and it is adjustable. This can be distracting
- Check on the acoustics in the meeting rooms.
- Make sure you check what is included and what is not in rental fees.
- Negotiate on the daily delegate rate packages.
- Check whether water is included. Try to negotiate costs on free flowing hot beverages during the training event.
- Check on overnight holds. If you do not want to vacate your meeting rooms by the end of the day. You may have a particular set up and do not want to empty the room at the end of the day. Overnight hold costs can be excessive, try to negotiate these costs.
Set up Day
Depending on the complexity of your training event, arrange to set up the afternoon before. This will give you sufficient time to complete technical checks and a rehearsal if necessary. This may be the first time the facilitator or speaker see the venue so allow sufficient time for that. Again, a word of caution, be aware of overnight hold charges. Some venues will negotiate a set up and derig charge.
Audio Visual Requirements
- Check in advance with the facilitator and speaker what AV requirements are required.
- Obtain all slide decks at least 24 hours before the event so that these can be loaded on the event laptop
- If slide decks contain embedded videos, insist that these are sent at least 48 hours so that they can be tested and any problems identified.
- Do technical checks on equipment on the set up day.
So, there you have it. 5 easy and quick tips you should consider when managing your venue for your next training event. Just an extra tip, make sure you book early especially in areas where there are other events going on. This could be up to a year beforehand depending on the complexity of the event, its requirements, the popularity of a specific venue and the location.
What other tips have you found valuable when managing your training event? I would love to hear them. Just send us your comments below.