There’s a lot that goes into pulling off a successful event. For the most part, the hardest work goes on behind the scenes, long before your guests set foot in the venue. And a lot of the details that seem minor (and as a result, are overlooked), are the details which can sabotage your entire event.
Technical requirements – two words that instil dread into the heart of almost every event planner – are one of these crucial minor details that, when you really get down to it, aren’t so minor after all.
Let’s set the scene with a flashback to an event we were once involved in:
Our client had requested that we erect a bedouin tent on the balcony of the venue: a high-rise building. After getting the thumbs up from the managing company, we were all systems go. As our team stepped into the elevator – so did the client’s logistics engineer. An encounter which can only be described as serendipitous ensued: he informed us that the balcony could not, in fact, support the weight of a bedouin tent. Had we not crossed paths, over 200 guests would have plunged to their death.
The moral of the story? The devil is in the (technical) details.
In order to ensure your guests, and staff, aren’t at risk of a structural failure at your next event, it’s crucial that you include the following in your event planning checklist:
- Familiarise yourself with the National Building Regulations for Temporary Structures , as well as the Rigging Guidelines for Ladders and Scaffolding.
- Always ensure that you obtain written permission from the building’s architect prior to setting up any sort of structure.
- Ask for the building’s engineering certificate and have it examined by a certified structural engineer.
- Conduct a safety assessment of your venue with a certified structural engineer.
- Draw up a Disaster Management Plan. This serves as a critical legal safeguard should any accident or structural failure occur.
It’s your responsibility to check, check and check again that all safeguards are in place, and that you’ve done your due diligence. As I’m so fond of saying (for this very reason), when it comes to technical compliance, assume nothing.
Make sure you’re equipped to give your guests a professional event experience – from start to finish – by downloading our free ebook, below.