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Hiring Event Staff: 5 Things You Need to Know

Hiring event staff is one of the most complex and critical aspects of event planning. You might have the finest venue, top-tier sound system, delectable food, and impeccable facilities at your disposal. However, without the right staff, your event could quickly spiral into a disaster. How can you ensure you assemble the ideal event team? No need to fret – we've got your back. Within the confines of this article, we’ll delve into the five pivotal aspects that demand your attention when it comes to hiring staff for an event. Keep reading to gain deeper insights into these key considerations.

Know what you need

The very first and most crucial step in event staff hiring is to have a clear understanding of your requirements. Your event demands a diverse array of roles, but the question at hand is: "Do these roles align with your specific needs?"

Numerous factors can influence the answer to this question. To simplify matters, let's break down the steps you should take to determine the precise type of staff your event requires:

1. Define your event objective

What kind of event are you organising? Is it a business conference, a wedding, a trade show, or perhaps a music festival? Different events inherently possess varying demands. Hence, it's imperative to identify the unique aspects of your event.

Delve into the event's goals and purpose, and this exploration will grant you a clearer perspective on the type of event staff you need.

2. Visualise the flow of the event

Contemplate your event from its inception to its conclusion. Identify the pivotal and significant junctures within this flow. What tasks take centre stage during each part of the event program? By deconstructing your event into manageable components, you'll effectively ascertain the nature of staffing essential for each segment.

3. Factor in event size

The magnitude of your event directly corresponds to the size of your required staff. Moreover, even if your event is relatively modest, intricate and multifaceted affairs demand additional hands. Complexity necessitates ample assistance.

4. Identify necessary roles

Tailoring your staff to your event hinges on its type, scale, and intricacy. A myriad of roles might be indispensable, including those responsible for registration, ushering, catering, technical support, videography, photography, setup, teardown, security, and beyond.

Be sure you clearly outline the roles and responsibilities of each person before the event staff hiring process. You don’t want event staff to get confused and misunderstand your expectations.

Determine your budget

How much can you afford to pay event staff? Your budget significantly impacts both the calibre and quantity of your team. Not only that, but budget has a huge bearing on your event life cycle. Remember, when planning an event, your focus should encompass not only staffing expenses but also the broader production costs. Event staffing can constitute a substantial portion of your budget.

Here are several key considerations to bear in mind when delving into the realm of budgeting:

1. Impact of event size

The scale of your event has a direct influence on your staffing budget. Naturally, you'll spend less on staffing for a small and intimate fundraising event compared to the requirements of a large-scale festival.

2. Calculating staffing hours

To calculate the number of hours needed for event staff each day of an event, start by defining the daily schedule, breaking it into work shifts, assigning staff roles, and knowing their hourly rates. For each staff member during a shift, multiply their scheduled hours by their hourly rate to calculate labour costs. Repeat this process for all shifts and staff members, then sum up the costs to determine the total daily expenses for event staff.

3. Factor in expertise

Compensation is not a uniform proposition. Distinct levels of skill, extensive experience, and specialised proficiencies entail varied wage structures. Higher expertise often correlates with increased costs.

4. Attractive compensation

To draw in top-tier talent, don't hesitate to offer higher compensation and provide extra perks and incentives. Deeming this as an investment is prudent especially when hiring the right staff. A team of adept professionals can elevate your event to new heights.

5. Allocated for the unforeseen

Events often encounter unforeseen situations, which may require additional staff. Incorporating a contingency reserve in your budget ensures you’re prepared to handle these types of situations.

6. Prudent budget utilisation

The interplay between quality and cost is paramount. In broad terms, if you seek quality staff, allocating a more substantial budget is advisable. While the allure of cost-cutting is ever-present, consider curbing expenditures in other event sectors before considering reductions in staffing costs. Such reductions should ideally be a final resort.

Ultimately, astute budget management empowers you to craft a highly skilled and experienced event staff without compromising on quality.

Define your qualifications

When it comes to hiring people, you should have a well-defined set of qualifications. Mere reliance on feelings or intuition for hiring decisions falls short of the mark. Objectivity should be your guiding principle, as the triumph of your event hinges on the calibre of your team.

As previously mentioned, understanding the roles to be filled constitutes a foundational step. However, this knowledge alone isn’t enough. You must dive deeper to gain a thorough understanding of the experience and qualifications your prospective event staff must have.

To this end, take into account the following facets when delineating your team's qualifications:

  • Communication and social skills
  • Required skills and experience
  • Leadership and teamwork qualities
  • Technical proficiencies
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Problem-solving abilities
  • Time-management skills
  • Appearance and dress code
  • Work ethic
  • Dedication and commitment

Although you might be tempted to dismiss these factors as inconsequential or time-consuming, the opposite holds true. You’ll find solace in having dedicated time to consider these criteria.

Once a clear picture of your ideal team members forms in your mind, the hiring process becomes more streamlined and efficient. Moreover, your chances of recruiting individuals aligned with your event's vision, mission, and objectives are notably increased.

Choose a hiring process

Now that you’ve identified your staffing needs, established your budget, and outlined job qualifications, the next step is to refine your event staff hiring process. The hiring process is how you’ll find your potential employees and how they’ll find you.

Here are some important things to consider when hiring staff for an event:

1. Craft comprehensive job listings

Before you can put the word out there, you have to write the words down. Craft detailed job listings and descriptions for the roles you need to fill. Include in your listing the job responsibilities, qualifications, and what your event is all about.

It’s vital to write a job posting that will attract the right prospective event staff. Let them know the benefits and perks of joining your team. Be clear and concise so that there will be no confusion in your job description.

2. Leverage online platforms

Online platforms are cost-effective and have a wide range of reach. There are numerous websites today that connect employees and employers. You can go to those websites, post your job listing, and wait for applications to come in.

Beyond conventional job boards, harness the potential of social media and professional networking platforms. Notable online platforms encompass Indeed, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

3. Consider recruitment agencies

If time and resource constraints are barriers to navigating the hiring process independently, consider collaborating with a staffing firm or recruitment agency. They have the necessary skills, experience and expertise to provide you with the event staff you need. You simply have to tell them your specific requirements.

While utilising a recruitment agency presents numerous benefits, bear in mind relinquishing total control of the hiring process is an inevitable trade-off. Additionally, these agencies may have limited insights into the intricacies of your event— a factor worthy of consideration.

4. Practical tests for auditions

Part of knowing how to hire event staff is giving out practical tests and auditions especially if the roles demand specialised skills. This hands-on approach allows you to gauge candidates' abilities and observe how they would perform during your event. Such assessments provide valuable insights into their suitability for the role.

5. Ask for references

When hiring event staff, it's essential to request references. These references provide valuable insights into the candidates' previous work experiences, professionalism, and reliability. Contacting former employers or supervisors allows you to gauge their performance, work ethic, and suitability for the role, helping you make informed decisions and ensure the success of your event.

Final interview and build your team

Whatever hiring process you choose, you must have a final interview with your potential job candidate. You don’t want to add a new member to your team without speaking to them.

Interviews offer insights into the individual behind the candidate and lay the foundation for building rapport right from the start. Aside from that, the interview gives you an idea of how your candidate can contribute to your team.

Prepare a list of interview questions to help you gauge the candidate’s skills, qualifications, and experience. You might also present a scenario typical of your event and inquire about their approach to handling it.

Aside from technical skills, you should also evaluate the applicant’s soft skills which include teamwork, adaptability, communication, and problem-solving. Assess as well if the candidate is a cultural fit with your company’s overall mission and vision.

Once you have found the right people, it’s time to build your team. Explain what they’ll need to do. Tour them around your venue. Introduce them to your existing staff. Let them know your expectations as well as what they can expect from the team and event managers.

From there, delegate roles and responsibilities. Train them if necessary. Designate a team leader for each event department. This way, you won’t get overwhelmed by managing every single team member. Be sure everyone understands their roles and how their contributions to the team are essential to your event’s success.

Have the best team for your event

From assessing your needs to selecting staff, there are many things you need to know about building your team. Thankfully, with the information shared in this guide, you now have a better understanding of how you can find the right people for the right job.

Hiring event staff is just one aspect of event planning. You should also have the right tools especially when you’re selling tickets. In that case, be sure to use Ticketleap’s ticketing system to help you sell, manage, and promote your event’s tickets. With advanced analytics and powerful features, Ticketleap can turn your event from ordinary to extraordinary!