The current economic climate has seen businesses across the board become more frugal and the events industry is no exception. For this reason, it’s become more important than ever to have processes in place that safeguard against the unnecessary waste of resources.

The amount of waste your event generates boils down to your attendance rates. If your event is well attended, the likelihood of surplus is minimal. If only a fraction of your guests show up, you’ll not only be left with excessive waste but the unpleasant task of having to explain to your client that their investment didn’t result in a profit. Our professional RSVP system has been created in order to ensure that your event is as well attended as possible. Here’s how we go about this:

Safeguarding against event waste starts at the very beginning of the event planning process.

Far too few event managers realise the importance of following up with guests prior to an event. If you’re of the opinion a mere email or SMS will suffice – your events are likely to be poorly attended and result in wastage that is entirely preventable. The RSVP Agency has developed an intricate 12 step process in order to make sure our clients’ events are as well attended as possible. Before we send out our clients invitations, we send a ‘Save the Date’ – one of the most crucial considerations in ensuring events have the maximum attendance rate possible. Guests who’re given adequate notice of an upcoming event are far more likely to attend.

Just prior to the event, we send out an SMS reminder – because even though someone has accepted your invitation, they may have forgotten about it. In addition, we call guests in order to confirm their dietary requirements. This is an efficient way of conveying that their attendance is expected due to the fact that you’ve already spent money on their meal.

Giving clients the final say as to what will happen to leftover food, eliminates against event waste.

One of our considerations when planning an event is to ask our clients their preferred way of dealing with surplus catering once a function is over. Some may want to donate it to a charity, like a church soup kitchen, and others may prefer that it goes to event staff. Knowing what to do with excess meals is paramount, as it further prevents unnecessary event waste.

Accurate reporting tools that are updated in real-time notify us about any changes in the guest list.

Thanks to our sophisticated event management software (you can read more about it here), we’re able to see who is coming and who has cancelled at the last minute. The attendance or non-attendance of every single guest has ramifications related to event waste. This means that it’s essential that you’re up-to-date with your attendance rates at all times. If we notice that a guest has cancelled, we’ll be able to inform the caterers – avoiding the over-supply of meals, and having to pay for food that won’t be eaten. Efficiently managing all aspects of an event – not just event waste – relies on keeping your finger on the pulse at all times. This can’t be done manually. For this reason, employing the use of event software is crucial if you want to safeguard against event waste.

Gathering as much detailed information from our guests beforehand enables us to be as prepared as possible.

Years of event planning has taught us that the more detailed the data, the better the management of an event. Depending on the function in question, we’ll ask guests for specific information in order to enable our clients to be sufficiently equipped. Information such as, shirt sizes and quantities for a corporate golf day so that you don’t run the risk of being left with branded golf shirts that can’t be re-used. Other information we’ll ask for are dietary preferences, and whether or not guests will be bringing a partner. Once we have this data on hand, the need to order unnecessary extras is eliminated.

Image Credit: Living on a Dime