Oliver Carding | Apr 12, 2012
If you have been given the task of planning a conference be it for a business, sporting, charity event or any kind of event, then choosing the conference venue is the most important decision that you will make. There are many factors to consider to ensure that you choose the perfect venue and deliver the message you want to your chosen audience. Let’s take a look at what to look for in a conference venue.
The city of Manchester has enjoyed a renaissance recently thanks to the relocation of the BBC and the continuing regeneration of the city, post IRA bomb (1996). Furthermore it is located in North West England and a great central UK location therefore we will use Manchester conference venues as examples.
Capacity and Location
The capacity and location are the most important factors to consider. How many people do you intend to invite to the venue? What is the objective of the conference and who are your audience going to be? For example hosting a corporate conference would require a large venue like Manchester Conference Centre or Manchester United FC due to their ability to hold and cater for large capacities. Whereas an intimate business dinner would need to be hosted in an entirely different type of venue, a small intimate venue such as Abode, Michael Caines restaurant inManchesterwhich caters for up to 40 people.
Logistics and Accessibility
It is important to understand who is travelling to the conference, how far they need to travel and by what means of transport. The conference should be located at a central point between all delegates (i.e.Manchesterif delegates areUKbased) to make it as easy as possible for people to reach. Moreover consider how delegates will be reaching the venue as this will determine if you require car parking spaces, rail, motorway or flight links near to the conference venue. If people are travelling from all over the country, consider choosing a conference venue that offers a flexible check in/ out time.
Identify the agenda for the day of the conference as this will determine how many meeting rooms you require, the room layouts, the equipment (i.e. flipcharts, notepads, pens, audio-visual equipment etc). Does the venue offer accommodation for those delegates that need a place to sleep?
Selecting a conference venue which offers the services of competent staff is one of the best decisions you could make. Delivering a successful conference where delegates including important clients and colleagues are impressed is the best advocate for your business that you could wish for. Conference centre staff will play a hugely important role in this as they will not only facilitate the day, but will also accommodate any last minute changes i.e. additional photocopying, room changes, customer requests etc. These are the things that people remember, therefore if the conference venue staff are friendly, helpful and flexible, it will create an overall more positive experience for your delegates.
The ‘X’ Factor
Choose a venue that offers the ‘x’ factor i.e. something that will make your guests remember the day. This could be anything from the quality of the food or drinks or the actual venue itself. Manchester offers a number of wow factor venues for example the Lowry, Manchester United FC and the Hilton Deansgate are all very different conference venues in Manchester, but they all offer the ‘x’ factor and guarantee your delegates will remember their experience for years to come.
Filed Under: Conference & Event Planning
About the Author: Oliver Carding is an established content writer and SEO expert from Manchester UK, he writes on a number of blogs and websites including http://barcelona.venuehunter.co.uk the independent venue finder.