Does Your RFP Address Your Audience’s Need for Space?
Will your audience be in the same space most of the day for five days? Do you take the time to consider the comfort of your audience as you determine your meeting room needs in terms of capacity and room sets? If you were the attendee, what would you expect to be provided at an event that would make you comfortable? You are the key to the success of your event as you communicate through your planning process.
Check with Your Sales Person
The sales person at a facility will sell space based on the facts that they are given to sell. The facts are often in the form of a Spec Sheet. Then at some point, you will talk with a staff person from convention services, catering or even audiovisual. They will recommend room capacities as a result of their experience and your needs.
Let’s go back in time to your advance planning and what information to include in your Request for Proposals. Before you distribute your RFP to a facility, take the time to include a description of your requirements, based on your audience needs and your needs. Do you know what is needed?
Visualize Your Event Space
Just envision your attendees entering a meeting room at your event:
- Electronic equipment such as laptop and/or iPad in hand.
- Notebooks for their handwritten notes carried under their arm.
- Carrying food and beverages picked up from your break stations. Remember this is in addition to the water that you provide at each seat.
- Ticket for their working lunch (requiring table space for their lunch plates).
Space is the magical answer. Your audience will need space.
Seven Steps for Your RFP
Seven steps that the planner can take to prepare the meeting room segment of the RFP in an attempt to accommodate the space needs of your audience:
- First of all, share demographic information about your audience. This allows the facility to get to know and understand your audience, e.g. male/female, mode of travel, business/casual dress, etc.
- Based on your previous events and your planning for the upcoming event, review the projected attendance and room set requirements for each room.
- Offer an outline of your audiovisual requirements. As a result, the staff can offer suggestions based on their experience and in the end often saving you time and money.
- Consider your utility requirements, e.g. electric, Internet. Items may differ between common areas, the needs of a speaker in a meeting room and attendees in a meeting room.
- Provide a realistic schedule for Food and Beverage functions, e.g. break stations, lunch buffet, etc. The location and size of the stations will need to be determined.
- Most facility websites offer floor plan diagrams along with room statistics and room set standards. Reviewing this information in advance will help you to provide accurate and realistic requests in your RFP.
- Finally, prepare an outline of your events preferred room sets and share specific details allowing the facility the opportunity to provide an accurate proposal.
In addition to improving the proposal response, providing details about your event and your needs will allow you to be successful with the product that you deliver to your audience, that being space.