It is the wise planner who has discovered – through hard experiences – the differences between selecting suppliers and services more carefully.

Of course we have our chosen sub-contractors – based on previous performance and indeed sound relationships – yet planners need to delve deeper dependent entirely on the type and capacity of the event.

There are few suppliers and services who will admit to not being able to undertake certain specific assignments hence below are the main questions worthy of noting based on the exact event specifications.


Sensible venues today are candid in specialising in certain types of events and even become renowned for being predominantly a banquet, training, conference or wedding–type of space.

* Pre-assembly Area

Are the spaces adjacent to the main room use large enough for the delegation?

Will the group be sharing the adjacent space with any other group?

What is the distance to the main collection areas such as: parking, dining & accommodation areas?

*Terrain & Accessibility

Is the venue’s external areas level and easily traversed?

What is the distance from the kitchens to the dining areas and are these on the same level?


There are many different kinds of caterers and a number of event planners have those that have been excellent for a specific occasion hence there is the tendency to use the same caterer for another event.  Beware that caterers are not a one size which fits all and every type of event.


Has the caterer the preparation space for the number of attendees?


Is the caterer accustomed to undertaking specialised cuisine in keeping with the event?

Registration Systems

Services that record the attendees can differ greatly between exhibitions and conferences.

*Recorded Information

What are the precise attendee details that are required for a variety of applications?

*Data-base Capture

Is the system capable of ensuring an ongoing, usable database?

Staging & Production

The number of differing types of AV & staging companies in a given area can be staggering and the events needs should be clearly pointed out in relation to the staging company’s actual abilities.

*Own or Hired Equipment

Is the equipment being hired-in together with the condition of the equipment?

*Permanent or Hired-in Personnel

Similarly where are the technical back-up personnel being sourced from?

Asking these key questions and assessing the answers will determine whether the most appropriate supplier & services for your event have been selected.

*Helen Brewer from The MICE Academy is an independent contributor and articles do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of The Planner.