A Guide to Corporate Event Planning in the Time of COVID (2022)

Since the COVID 19 pandemic, many industries have seen adverse effects on their work processes. The hospitality industry has been deeply affected by this, especially businesses tasked with planning and executing events.

To keep people safe and to support business operations continuing, corporate event planning companies can smartly execute their tasks with COVID cautionary measures in place. Read on to learn more about the corporate event planning ideas and trends during COVID-19.

What is Corporate Event Planning?

Corporate event planning is the profession of event management for businesses, such as planning and executing meetings, seminars, conferences, and more. Corporations will entrust these planners to put together events that will represent their organizations professionally to their attendees. 

However, since the COVID pandemic occurred, event planners have needed to adjust several aspects of their planning process to comply with safety measures and ensure security for their clients and attendees. This guide will explain some of the methods that corporate event planners can use to plan and hold their events safely.

Types of Corporate Events

Corporate event planners are utilized for a wide range of occasions. Examples of such company event planning objectives are included below:

  • Company Retreats: These events are attended by company members and are usually held in a remote location, away from the office. They allow staff and leadership to discuss goals and boost their team collaboration skills.
  • Conferences: Conferences are large gatherings of usually many attendees that are formal and professional. Conference planning often involves hosting these events in conference halls or large spaces to hold the people and equipment necessary for the occasion. 
  • Seminars: These events are usually held with the purpose of education or to train company staff members. They typically have up to 50 attendees and involve presentations or discussions to share information or ideas. 
  • Trade Shows: Trade shows are usually held to show off a company’s new product or service. Attendees can include industry professionals, members of the press, and representatives for the company. 
  • Charity Events: Charity events have the essential purpose of raising awareness, funds and/or resources for a particular cause. Suitable venues should have enough space for the attendees, equipment, and any activities involved with the theme or raise money. 
  • Board and Shareholder Meetings: These events are generally only attended by company members in higher-up or leadership positions. They are usually held for the purpose of discussing business finances, management, and policy topics.
  • Milestone Events:  These events celebrate the company’s staff efforts or the achievement of company milestones. 
  • Product Launch Events: This type of event is to debut a new product by the company to the public. This is so they can build excitement toward the product and secure sales.
  • Networking Events: Networking events generally involve professional attendees within the same industry and allow them to communicate on relevant topics and build business relationships. These networking events usually allow participants to meet and have one-on-one interactions. 

Considerations for Planning Corporate Events in the Time of Covid

In the time of COVID and the safety measures and restrictions that come with it, planners have had to consider many factors to comply with rules and regulations. The following subsections will detail some essential considerations planners must take for planning a corporate event.

Local and Government Restrictions

To ensure safety for their citizens, many local and government offices have established restrictions following the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, it is important to research the area in which the event is to be set before planning to see if you must follow any current safety restrictions or guidelines. This will ensure that your event goes on safely and in a way that abides by the rules.

Exceptional Hygiene Standards

Corporate event planners have always needed to consider hygiene when organizing these events; however, planners must be even more mindful of these cleanliness and health standards. For example, setting up hand sanitizer around the event is a great way to support cleanliness. In addition, if there are any rules for the event, like mask mandates, you should include them within the invitation and a sign outside the event’s entrance, so that your attendees can prepare accordingly.

Enforcement of Social Distancing Measures

There are many ways for event planners to enforce social distancing measures. Aside from reminding your attendees of social distancing rules in a sign by the entrance, you can also place appropriately distanced marker stickers on the floor anywhere where your attendees may gather in a line.

Effective Risk Communication

Risks should be communicated effectively to attendees and guests prior to the event. Corporate event planners can provide the risks and restriction information in the invitations or signs advertising the event to ensure their awareness before attending. Planners can also effectively communicate risks to staff by speaking with them prior to the event and establishing a proper protocol aligned with the safety standards and restrictions.

Practical Use of Event Technology

Event management software may be used to plan and conduct corporate events safely. Also, hybrid events can occur online by establishing chat rooms and virtual meeting presentations. Webinars can be held for this purpose so that attendees can meet and gain information while practicing safe social distancing. Many streaming and virtual meeting services have gained popularity since the onset of COVID, such as Zoom.

Event Planning Checklist Tips to Make Sure Your Event Is COVID Compliant

The following corporate event planning checklist contains tips and tricks to help you ensure your business event planning is compliant with COVID safety regulations. This list will provide the steps to help you organize and hold a successful corporate event.

Step 1: Understand the purpose of your event

You should first understand the purpose and primary goal of your event. Identifying the purpose of the event (networking, releasing a new product, employee training) can help you determine what type of event (seminar, conference, etc.) would be best for reaching your client’s goals. 

Step 2: Set a budget

Once you have determined what type of event you are planning, you can more easily estimate your overall event budget and the resources needed to execute this type of event. Remember to consider Covid-factors or needs that could impact the budget, like securing a larger venue to allow for social distancing or purchasing supplies like hand sanitizer or extra masks.

Step 3: Establish a timeline

You should then establish a goal timeline for planning and executing the event. When doing so, consider how much time each step will take, like securing a venue, event marketing, allowing guests enough time to plan to attend, etc. Also, consider any COVID-related restrictions or factors that may lengthen this time.

Step 4: Choose your audience

This corporate event planning checklist step is to determine the best audience for your client’s event. Based on their needs and goal of the event, this could be press members, other corporate leaders, members of the public, etc. This will help you decide appropriate themes and locations based on your goal number of attendees, but due to COVID, you may wish to aim for a shorter guest list.

Step 5: Decide a theme and format

The event theme and format are essential for excitement for your event’s purpose or cause. Ensure that your event theme will be safe per COVID-risks. For example, a ball or square-dancing theme that involves dancing in close proximity could cause germs to spread, whereas a silent auction with distanced seating would be a safer option.

Step 6: Find a location

When venue sourcing, remember that your location should align with your event theme and provide enough space for your attendees and any necessary equipment. In the time of COVID-19, choosing a slightly larger venue may be better, as guests can distance themselves safely in this space.

Step 7: Plan the logistics

When organizing event logistics, you should consider your hiring needs, the materials you will utilize, equipment transfer, and other similar operations as cost-effectively as possible. Also, be sure to consider how COVID-risks could affect these actions and the event’s needs.

Step 8: Market your event

Event marketing will make potential attendees aware of your event and generate excitement. This can be done in-person or online, which may be a safer option as per social distance rules.

Need Staff for Your Special Event? We Can Help!

By following the checklist provided, you can ensure that in the times of COVID-19, your event goes off safely and successfully. And if you need any staff members for your special event, you can contact Adia for your hospitality staffing and event hiring needs. 

Adia’s online staffing platform can help you with your event staffing so that you can reach and hire workers quickly and easily. We can also help you develop the best salary for hospitality members and competitive rates to attract quality talent for your next event.

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