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EVENT PLANNING

GUIDELINES

INTRODUCTION
The University of Oxford is renowned for its diverse and exciting events.
Each and every event, no matter what the goal or size, from a building
opening to a Sunday afternoon lecture, is an opportunity to promote and
reinforce the international profile of the University. Events offer people
the chance to experience the University first-hand and it is important that
their content and delivery reflect our work and values.
The Events Office oversees a wide range of events each year from
traditional ceremonies and high profile visits to world-class lectures and
topical debates. We work with all departments, divisions and colleges
across the University to help ensure that everyone achieves their goals
and all events are a success.
The Events Office plays a key role in giving support and advice to other
members of the University who are responsible for planning and delivering
events. We are keen to share experiences and best practice and have
compiled the following information and guidelines for developing, planning
and running events based on our experiences and those of our colleagues
around the University.

Events Office
University of Oxford
University Offices
Wellington Square
Oxford OX1 2JD
T: 01865 280524
E: events@admin.ox.ac.uk
W: www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/events/

If you have any queries about the content or resources in this toolkit, or
if you need any specialist advice for your event that is not covered here,
please do not hesitate to contact us.

Event planning guidelines 2008

EVENT PLANNING GUIDELINES

EVENT PLANNING GUIDELINES

CONTENTS

page

GETTING STARTED

EVENT PLANNING CHECKLIST

Your event proposal

Developing your event idea

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

page
34

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT


The run-up to the event

36

Developing an event plan and timeline

Setting up for the event

37

Key areas in your event plan

10

Managing the event on the day

38

Agreeing the budget

10

EVALUATING YOUR EVENT

Setting the date

11

Why evaluate?

44

Timings for the event

12

How to evaluate your event

44

Working with VIPs

13

Using your evaluation information

45

Choosing a venue

17

Compiling and managing the guest list

19

Organising the invitations

21

Catering

27

EVENT PROPOSAL TEMPLATE

46

Audio/visual

28

EVENT PLAN & TIMELINE TEMPLATE

48

Event staff

29

EVENT BUDGET TEMPLATE

50

Transport

30

EVENT EVALUATION TEMPLATE

52

Publicity

31

Insurance

31

Table plans, place cards, badges

32

Event planning guidelines 2008

RESOURCES

Event planning guidelines 2008

GETTING STARTED

GETTING STARTED

Your event proposal

Developing your event idea

If you have an idea for an event, a useful first step is to put together an event
proposal; a document which outlines the reason for the event and what you are
planning to do. Having these agreed early in the planning process provides a focus for
everyone involved and a guide for planning and delivery decisions. It also enables you
to think ahead in terms of what will be needed and who will be involved in organising
and running the event.

Discussion and consultation

The key questions that your proposal should answer are:

Agreeing the aim, objectives and format for the event early on and ensuring that
everyone is fully on board, will make the event planning process more straightforward
and will put you in a better position to determine the level of resources you will
need to make the event a success. It can also give you an opportunity to incorporate
positive new ideas for the events at the planning stage and assist in post-event
evaluation.

What is the event?


Why are you having an event?
What will happen at the event?
Who is the event for?
Who will plan and run the event?
How much will the event cost and who will pay for it?
When will the event happen?
Where will the event take place?
You can download an event proposal template from the Events Office website and
there is a hard copy on page 44 of this booklet.

Your proposal will be particularly useful if you are working with other individuals or
departments on an event. It provides a summary of the key elements and structure
of the proposed event, which can then be discussed in more detail and developed
with others involved in the planning and delivery.

If you do not have a clear proposal to guide your planning, you may find that the key
messages of the event get confused, and that you waste time and energy further
down the line changing plans and making decisions that could have been agreed at
the start.
If you are planning an event which will be of particular interest to other areas of the
University, perhaps in terms of the content or target audience, discuss your proposal
with them at an early stage, even if you do not need to involve them in the planning
or delivery of the event. At the very least they will probably want to attend the
event, they may also have useful suggestions or contacts if you are compiling a guest
list or looking for speakers or an appropriate venue.
Research

Resource
You can download a template

event proposal template


on the Events Office website at
www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/
events/

Event planning guidelines 2008

Try and find out about other events of a similar theme/nature both inside and outside
the University. This may give you some inspiration for developing your event in
terms of the style, duration or activities that might work well. This is also a good
opportunity to ensure that you are not duplicating a similar event that is happening
somewhere else. The Events Office has experience of organising and managing a wide
variety of events and would be happy to discuss your ideas at the development stage.
We also maintain a University-wide events diary to help avoid clashes in the timing or
goals of different events.

Event planning guidelines 2008

GETTING STARTED

GETTING STARTED

Agreeing your event idea


Before you begin any in-depth planning for the event, you should discuss your
proposal with the appropriate people/departments, for example your line manager,
the budget holder and the head of your department, division or College. You can
use your proposal to give them a concise overview of the key information about the
event.
How the University Events Office can help
The Events Office staff have many years experience of planning and running events
and may be able to help you with advice, information and resources. Among other
things, the Events Office can:

advise on whether your proposed event will clash with another event in the
University calendar in terms of date or aim/content;

if appropriate, liaise with the Chancellor or Vice-Chancellors offices if you


plan to invite them to preside at the event or if you would like to invite
someone outside the University to do the honours;

provide information on planning and budgeting, such as venues, caterers and


approximate costs;

offer examples of and advice on best practice and protocol in relation to your
event, such as timings, the order of events and appropriate briefings.

Event planning guidelines 2008

Event planning guidelines 2008

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Give yourself TIME

Developing an event plan and timeline

Time is one of the most valuable, and often overlooked, resources in planning events.
Start planning well in advance, so you have a better chance of securing your first
choice of date, venue, host/speakers and guests. It will also provide you with more
flexibility to deal with unforeseen changes or developments along the way.

Once you have agreed and approved the proposal for your event, you should put
together a detailed event plan in which you break down all the tasks that need to
be done and assign responsibility and deadlines for each one. Your event plan should
be constantly updated as tasks are completed or changed so that you can use it for
regular status reports.

Get ORGANISED
Start a folder containing all your planning documents such as the proposal, event plan,
budget, contact details and quotes. This will be your guide for the event planning
process and should be updated regularly.
Remember to COMMUNICATE
Give regular updates on progress and any developments to key individuals and
departments working on the event, remembering to include any interested parties
who may not be directly involved in the planning and delivery. Regular communication
from the start will help ensure that everyone knows what their role is and feels valued
as part of the team.

You may also find it useful to create a timeline, linked to your event plan but less
detailed, which counts you down to your event and acts as a quick reference guide to
help you stay on track and ensure that everything gets done. It is laid out like a month
by month planner so that you can see at a glance when your workload will be heaviest
and how you can best use your resources.
Once you have developed your event plan, check it against your event proposal
to ensure that you have made appropriate plans and arrangements for all the key
elements of the event.
You can download a combined event plan and timeline template with guidelines from
the Events Office website. More details on completing the template can also be found
on page 46 of this booklet.

Resource
You can download a template

event plan & timeline template


on the Events Office website at
www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/
events/

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PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Key areas in your event plan


Agreeing the budget

Setting the date

Normally your budget can be a very simple outline of projected costs which is quick
to complete but will provide an essential tool for monitoring your expenditure. The
Events Office has designed a budgeting form to help you estimate your expenditure.
This should be agreed with the budget holder before you start spending! Some costs
may immediately spring to mind when planning an event, such as:

Deciding on the date

Venue
Catering (food and/or drinks)
Audio/visual equipment/staff

If there is no obvious date for your event (such as an anniversary or scheduled VIP
visit to the University), you could research information on relevant dates in the
university/college history and propose a date to coincide with this.
You can find information on University term and other key dates here: www.
ox.ac.uk/about_the_university/university_year/index.html. You can find
general information about UK public holidays here: www.direct.gov.uk/en/
Governmentcitizensandrights/LivingintheUK/DG_073741.

Transport

Avoiding competition with other events

Staff - waiting staff, stewards, admin, first aiders

The Events Office holds a University-wide diary of to help ensure that your proposed
date does not clash with another major University event. You should also check with
your departmental, divisional or college events/alumni office, if you have one, to
ensure that your proposed date is suitable. Even if events that are happening on the
same day have very different themes, you may find that this will cause unnecessary
complications for the planning and organisation when securing the venue, attracting
your target audience and arranging catering and transport, for example.

Stationery (invitations, menus, badges etc)


Printing/photocopying (publicity material, invitations, programmes etc)
But remember to include other more hidden costs, such as:
Speaker expenses (travel, hotel, food)

Getting into a VIPs busy diary

Postage (invitations, publicity etc)

If it is important that the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor or external VIP attends/hosts


your event, it is essential that you approach them well in advance of the proposed
date (You should give them at least six months advance notice of the date). Your
event proposal will be useful in outlining the purpose and format of the event and
highlighting the important role of the VIP. Where your VIP is an integral part of your
proposed event (e.g. a lecture or presentation), offer more than one date to their
office as this flexibility will make it easier to find a date that works for everyone.

Decorations (flowers etc)


Photography
Security
You can download an event budget template from the Events Office website. More
details on completing the template can also be found on page 48 of this booklet.

Resource
You can download a template

event budget template


on the Events Office website at
www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/
events/
10

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PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Timings for the event

Working with VIPs

When deciding on the timing, write out a sequence of activities for the day to give
you a clearer picture of how much time you need to allow.

VIPs are people who are important to your event or wider work. They do not have to
be well-known and can be internal or external to the University. By identifying them
as a VIP, you can help to ensure that they get the attention and information that they
need in advance of the event and on the day.

Some key time allowances to consider include moving large numbers of people from
one building or room to another, transporting guests, speeches and/or presentations,
seating guests, and serving food. Large crowds tend to move quite slowly, as do small
crowds moving in to dinner after chatting in the bar!
If you are planning to have speeches and/or presentations for a standing audience,
they should normally last a maximum of 5 to 10 minutes each, with no more than two
in a row without a break.
Think about what has and has not worked at events that you or your colleagues have
attended and feed this into your plans. You can also contact the Events Office for
advice on timings for events.

Getting VIPs to your event


The further ahead you are able to approach VIPs for an event, the better, as their
diaries may be booked up many months or even years in advance. This is particularly
important when inviting a VIP to host or speak at your event, but also applies to any
guests that you hope will be able to attend.
Identifying an appropriate external VIP host
The University has a wide network of friends and supporters, in a variety of fields of
interest. If you are planning to ask a VIP who is external to the University to preside
over or host an event, you should contact the Vice-Chancellors office initially as they
may be able suggest appropriate individuals or advise on approaching someone you
already have in mind. You can initially approach the Events Office who may liaise with
the Vice-Chancellors office on your behalf.
If you are planning to invite a Head of State or Royal to your event, please contact the
Events Office before approaching them.
Inviting an external VIP to host
Once you have discussed and agreed your VIP host with the Vice-Chancellors
office, the invitation would usually be sent from the Vice-Chancellor on behalf of the
University. You should draft a letter of invitation and send it to the Vice-Chancellors
office to be reviewed and signed. If you would like to include some additional
information with the letter, you will need to inform the Vice-Chancellors office and
ensure that they receive the letter and all relevant documents at the same time for
approval.

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Inviting the Chancellor and/or Vice-Chancellor to host or attend

Liaising with the VIPs office

The Events Office is usually involved in the planning and delivery of any events which
the Chancellor or Vice-Chancellor preside over. If you would like the Chancellor or
Vice-Chancellor to preside over or attend your event, please contact the Events
Office as far in advance as possible to discuss your event. The Events Office will then
liaise with the Vice-Chancellors office if necessary to explore possible dates.

Once an invitation to host, speak or attend has been accepted, contact the VIP, or
their office, so that they know how to contact you and you know who to contact in
their office. This is an opportunity to find out well in advance whether they have any
special requirements that you should incorporate in your planning, such as transport,
parking, a room in which to change/prepare, refreshments, presentation equipment as
well as dietary or access requirements.

Most importantly, for events hosted or attended by the Chancellor or ViceChancellor, or events with University-wide significance, the guest list should be sent
to the Vice-Chancellors office for review and suggestions before invitations are
issued.
VIP information and profiles
You may need some biographical information about a speaker or host for publicity
material and/or for briefings for internal or events staff. Contact the VIPs office in
the first instance to find out whether they have standard text for this. If they are not
able to help or point you in the right direction, you can usually find information on the
internet. However, this information may not be accurate or up-to-date so you should
always make sure that any text you plan to use has been approved by the VIPs office
before it is circulated.

Ensure that they have as much information on the event as they need, including
the background context, any key messages, the location, the timings, who will
be introducing them and any notes for their speech including duration and target
audience. Prepare a briefing pack which should be sent to their office at an agreed
time in advance of the event and also be available on the day.
In some cases, it may be appropriate to offer a meeting with the head of division,
head of department or head of house, for example, before the event, or even
to arrange a tour of Oxford or a specific area of the University that might be of
particular interest to them. You want to make their experience of the event as
enjoyable as possible.
Find out how they are planning to get to the venue and make sure that you have a
mobile phone number for them, their driver or a person who is travelling with them so
that you can contact them once they have left the office. Send clear directions to the
venue and check for major roadworks/road closures on their route. You can do this
online for Oxfordshire through Oxfordshire County Council
(www.oxfordshire.gov.uk Council Services > Roads and Transport > Roadworks)
and for the rest of the country through AA Road Watch
(www.theaa.com/travelwatch/travel_news.jsp). The traffic in Oxford can be
very slow so ensure their office knows to allow ample time for their journey.
If they are travelling by car, you will also need to make sure that you have arranged
appropriate parking and that you have let them know the details in advance.

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PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Looking after VIPs on arrival

Choosing a venue

First impressions really do count and if you have invited someone to speak at your
event and there is no-one there to welcome them when they arrive, it will not reflect
well on the organiser or commissioner of the event. Make sure that you have agreed
who is going to be responsible for meeting the VIPs on arrival, and that this person
is fully briefed; they know where they are going, what refreshments are on offer and
what the VIPs schedule is in case they have any queries. They should also have some
spare copies of the VIPs briefing pack to hand.

Starting your venue search

Introducing VIPs

The key factors in deciding on the right venue will most likely be the location,
facilities, the capacity and the cost. Visiting potential venues is the most effective
way of finding out whether it is suitable for the particular event or activities that you
are planning. You can also ask whether they have held similar events at that venue in
the past and how they worked.

If you have a VIP guest speaker or host for your event, it is common for either the
host or Head of your department or institution to welcome the audience and give a
short introduction on the event and the VIP before handing over to them. Once you
have agreed who would be the most appropriate person to do this, make sure they
are aware of what they should say, how long they should speak for and where they
should sit once they leave the stage. You may need to write their introductory notes
for them. Your VIP will also need to know who is going to introduce them and what
their cue is to take the stage.
Thanks and closing remarks
Similarly, on some occasions it is customary for the individual who introduced a VIP
speaker or host to make brief closing remarks at the end of a speech or presentation.
Again you will need to let them know what to say and it is probably a good idea to
make some notes. Closing remarks tend to focus on thanking the VIPs, summarising
the key messages of the event (where appropriate), thanking others involved in
planning and delivering the event (including the audience) and informing guests if
there is another element to the event, such as refreshments served in the foyer or
dinner served in the main hall. Bear in mind closing remarks should be very brief and
should not introduce large amounts of new information.

The Events Office has put together a list of University, college and other Oxford
venues with details on capacity, location and special facilities which may be useful in
identifying an appropriate venue. A copy of this list is available on request.
Finding the right venue

The event could potentially be held across more than one venue. This usually works
most effectively when the venues are in easy reach of each other, for example
combining the Divinity School and the Sheldonian Theatre, but may also work when
the venues are further apart with appropriate planning and transport. The University
Events Office may be able to advise you if you have queries about venues for
different types of events.
Considering special requirements
Depending on the type of event you are planning, you may need to consider special
requirements or facilities such as audio/visual technology, changing rooms, secure
cloakrooms/room for baggage or additional furniture. It is a good idea to contact
potential venues directly to discuss your particular requirements as they can advise
you based on past experience.
Getting the space you need
When you book the venue, make sure that you are booking all the space you are going
to need. Some venues book out other rooms for other events so you may want to
find out whether any other events are planned at the same time as your event. If you
need your own private reception area, for example, you may need to book an extra
room for this.

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Planning the layout

Compiling and managing the guest list

The layout of your event will depend on the size, format and activities. Visiting the
venue and walking through what will happen on the day really helps you see how the
event will work in practice, not just on paper.

Compiling the guest list

Some points to consider in addition to space and special requirements include:


Adequate signposting at the entrance to the building and from the entrance to
the room/area where the event will take place is important because some guests
may not have been there before
A registration desk for guests to announce their arrival, collect badges/
programmes etc. If you are planning to have this at your event, where will it be
placed to ensure that it is not easily missed or bypassed
Adequate signposting of available facilities, such as toilets, cloakroom, left
luggage, exits
A seating plan for any part of the event this should usually be printed in the
largest format possible, on display in more than one place at the event and not
displayed in doorways or corridors where a crowd could block a thoroughfare. In
some cases copies of the seating plan for a dinner, for example, can be circulated
to all guests earlier on in the event. If you are planning to do this, you will need to
identify the most appropriate time and location
Reserved seating for the host, speaker(s) and/or VIPs. You will need to ensure
that they have easy access to the stage or other areas relevant for your specific
event, that they know where their seats are and that their seats are clearly
reserved with signs if necessary

Keeping all guest information, including titles, names, addresses, dietary requirements
and partners names, together on one list, will make managing the guest list much
more simple. If you are working with a number of different people or departments on
an event, the most efficient way to compile a guest list is to give one person or office
responsibility for holding a master guest list, issuing the invitations and acting as the
main point of contact for guests. Everyone who is working on the event can then
submit suggestions or amendments to that person or office. The University Events
Office uses an Excel sheet to record and monitor guest list information. You can
download a template guest list from the Events Office website.
It is usually the responsibility of the event commissioner to put forward the guest
list and, depending on the circumstances, this may be added to by other interested
parties. In addition to the guests put forward within a department or college, it may
also be appropriate to ask other departments, colleges or individuals within the
University who have a link with the event, whether they have any suggestions or
contacts. In some cases, the event commissioner may wish to send a personalised
invitation with a letter to their contacts. If this is the case, those invitations are still
prepared by the master guest list holder with the rest of the invitations for the event,
and are then sent to the commissioner to be included with their own letter.
Places for the event may be limited so if you find that you have more suggestions
than you are able to invite, ask the commissioner to prioritise their guests and operate
an A list of priority guests and a B list of reserve guests to be invited as and when
A list guests are unable to attend. In this case, your RSVP date for A list invitations
should allow time for sending B list invitations at a later date.

Resource
You can download a

template guest list


on the Events Office website at
www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/
events/

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Agreeing the guest list with a VIPs office

Organising the invitations

For events hosted or attended by the Chancellor or Vice-Chancellor, or events with


University-wide significance, the guest list must be sent to the Vice-Chancellors
office for review and suggestions in the early stages of planning; in advance of wider
circulation and before the invitations are sent out. If you are inviting an external VIP
to host the event, you could offer to send a copy of the draft guest list to their office
for suggestions if you think it would be appropriate.

Sending a hold the date

Data Protection
When circulating the guest list internally or externally, always remove addresses and
personal details as it may be possible for other people to access this information. The
person who is responsible for managing the guest list should select only the relevant
information about accepts, regrets or special requirements to circulate as an update.

For some events which are planned well in advance and are of particular significance,
a hold the date can be sent in advance of the invitations to give guests as much
notice as possible. This might be particularly useful for high-profile events, where
guests may have very busy diaries or where places are limited and you will have a
reserve guest list. You should note the date that a hold the date is sent against the
relevant guests (if not all) on your guest list for future reference.
Sending the invitations
Invitations should ideally be sent out eight weeks in advance of the event. Bear in
mind that you will need to allow time for designing, proofing, printing and addressing
invitations.

Managing the guest list


Giving one person or office responsibility for compiling and managing the guest list
will:

Please note: a draft copy of the invitation for events to be hosted by the ViceChancellor/Chancellor should be sent to the Vice-Chancellors office for approval
before they are printed.

Avoid duplicate invitations being sent to guests


Ensure that all guests receive the same information and that all replies are
recorded in one place

Provide a single point of contact for all guests for queries relating to the event
This list should be updated as guests reply to event invitations, noting any
amendments/requirements that they may have which could affect the planning
and organisation of the event, such as dietary requirements or transport needs. The
person or office who is managing the list can then circulate the updated list each
week (or as frequently as agreed) so that all those involved in organising the event
can review the acceptances and regrets as they come in.

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What to include on or with the invitation

Dress codes

In addition to the date, time, location and dress code for your event, you should
include the following information:

Commonly used dress codes, from most to least formal, are:

Who is issuing the invitation, i.e. hosting the event


What they are being invited to, i.e. what is the nature of the event (e.g. concert,
lecture, debate), what time the event will begin (and end, if appropriate), will
there be drinks/food etc

The RSVP date


The name, contact address, telephone number and email of the person to
whom they should reply or address queries

Whether they need to inform you of any special requirements they may have,
such as transport, access or dietary

Whether the invitation is just for them or whether they can bring a guest. If
they can bring a guest, do they need to let you know who it will be and if so,
how should they do this

If the event is invitation only, state that they need to bring their
invitation with them

White tie
Very formal, usually only used for heads of state dinners and, in Oxford,
commemorative and May balls. Men: black tail coat and matching black trousers with
a white dress shirt, a low white waistcoat and a white bowtie. Women: full-length
evening gowns.
Black tie
Typically for dinners and other formal evening gatherings where white tie is too
formal. Men: black dinner jacket and matching black trousers with a white dress
shirt, a low waistcoat or cummerbund and a black bowtie. Women: on a scale from
conservative cocktail dresses to full-length evening gowns.
Lounge suit/Business dress
Often used for evening or business functions including drinks parties, networking
events or conferences. Men: Suit with shirt and tie. Women: Smart office wear,
preferably a suit.
Business attire gowns will be worn
Usually used for ceremonial University events. Members of the University (who are
Oxford graduates, members of the Chancellors Court of Benefactors or honorary
fellows or degree holders) may wear their academic or honorary robes. All other
guests to dress as per Business dress guide above.

In some cases it may be appropriate to include:

Supplementary information such as maps, places to stay locally, taxi contact

Academic dress/gowns
All guests may wear academic robes.

details, parking arrangements

Reply forms on which guests can specify whether they will or will not be
attending. This is particularly useful if there are different elements to the
day and some guests may not be staying for the whole event or where numbers
are required for transport arrangements e.g. between venues

Information about photographs at the event. Unless it is a public event, you

Informal/Smart casual
Suitable for more informal events including lectures or garden parties. Tie optional, no
jeans, shorts, trainers.
Business attire or National dress
For international events

should ensure that guests are aware that photographs will be taken to avoid
issues with permissions. Guests can notify the photographer on the day if they
do not wish to be photographed
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Academic Dress

Invitation Styles

When members of the University are asked to wear academic dress to an event, they
should wear subfusc clothing as when attending a university examination, i.e.:

Details of the invitation styles most commonly used by the Events Office are outlined
below. Please contact the Events Office if you need more information or invitation
templates:

Men - A dark suit and socks, black shoes, a white bow tie, and plain white shirt and
collar
Women - A dark skirt or trousers, a white blouse, black tie, black stockings and shoes,
and, if desired, a dark coat
Guests who are not members of the University, dress should be such as would be
appropriate for formal occasions, unless otherwise stated.
Candidates serving in HM Forces are permitted to wear uniform together with a
gown. (The uniform cap is worn in the street and carried when indoors.)
This is taken from the Statutes and Regulations relating to Academic Dress made by
the Vice-Chancellor, as Authorised by Council. There is an extensive description of
various forms of academic dress available from the University website:
http://www.admin.ox.ac.uk/ps/staff/handbooks/9/9sall.shtml

Folded invitation
Printed size: A4 folded to A5, designed to open as an invitation card. Colour:
White, Weight: at least 250gsm. This can be useful for including larger amounts of
information or for longer events, for example, as there is space to include the running
order and timings for the day.
A5 invitation
Printed size: A5, Colour: White, Weight: at least 325gsm. This is used for all nonceremonial events.
Large gilt-edged card
Printed size: Landscape, width 202mm, height 152mm, Colour: White with gilt-edge,
Details: 350 gsm Gateway Gold bevelled edge. This is usually used for larger, formal
events such as lectures or events involving a number of different parts.
Small gilt-edged card
Printed size: Landscape, width 152mm, height 108mm, Colour: White with gilt-edge,
Details: 350 gsm Gateway Gold bevelled edge. This is usually used for smaller, formal
events such as dinners and ceremonial events.
If you have a specific enquiry about the wording for an invitation, please contact
the Events Office. The Universitys Publications and Web Office may be able to offer
advice on invitation design. They have also produced a branding toolkit as a guide on
the use of the University logos, texts and colours on printed materials. This can be
accessed online at www.ox.ac.uk/toolkit/
Printing and design
The Print and Reprographics Unit handles University print and reprographics, as well
as some external work. For further information contact
reprographics@admin.ox.ac.uk or phone (2)70029.
The Publications and Web Office has a list of external printers and designers which is
available on request. Email publications@admin.ox.ac.uk

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25

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Addressing invitations

Catering

Contributors to the guest list are responsible for making sure that the names and
addresses of their contacts are up-to-date when they are put forward to be invited
to an event. The person who is managing the guest list should make a note on their
master list of the date that each invitation was sent for future reference. You may
need to put an invitation on hold if a guest is on a reserve list or the address is being
confirmed, for example. Remember to highlight this on the guest list so that you dont
forget to send it at a later date.

Caterers

For clarification on the correct form of address, the Events Office refers to Correct
Form by Debretts which is a comprehensive guide to forms of address in Britain and
overseas, including academics, legal professionals, the peerage, armed forces, and
medical, political and religious styles.

The Events Office has used a number of local caterers for a range of events who can
provide canaps to buffets to large, formal dinners. A list of caterers that have been
used for events in the past is available on request. We would be happy to advise you
of companies who might be appropriate for your event and budget. In the majority
of cases these companies also provide waiting staff for your event as well as a bar
service, if required. It is advisable to request sample menus and quotes from at least
three different caterers before making a decision.
If you are planning a dinner, you should ensure that your caterer is able to produce
extra portions of any planned dishes in case you have an unexpected guest, or a
guests dietary requirements are only received on the day.

Managing replies
Venue requirements/restrictions
Logging RSVP information
The guest list should be updated as replies are received, noting any amendments/
requirements which could affect the planning and organisation of the event going
forward, such as catering or transport. The person or office who is managing the list
can then circulate the updated list each week (or as frequently as agreed) so that all
those involved in organising the event can review the acceptances and regrets as they
come in.
Following up with guests who have not replied
Where timing allows, leave a few days to a week after the deadline for replies before
contacting guests to find out whether they are planning to attend. If you are planning
an event at which guests will wear badges, make additional badges for any guests
who have not replied in case they turn up. You should also take some blank badges
and a marker pen for other unexpected guests.

If you are planning to have food and/or drinks at your event, you should discuss your
plans with the venue manager in advance. They will be able to advise you on what
will be possible, what has been successful in the past and whether they have the
appropriate licences.
Agreeing menus
When reviewing sample menus from caterers, remember to consider more common
dietary requirements, such as vegetarianism and religious dietary requirements, to
ensure you have a range of options that cater for everyone. If you are planning a
buffet, make sure that the dishes are labelled clearly so that guests can easily identify
any dishes that they cannot eat.

Larger/public events
For events that are open to a wider University audience or to the public, it can be
useful to use a sign-up process to give you a rough idea of how many people will be
attending. For some events an online registration facility may be appropriate and the
Events Office can provide more information on this. If you are not able to have an
online facility, you could ask people to send an email requesting places or to pick up
hard copy tickets in advance of the event.

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27

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Audio/visual

Event staff

Identifying requirements

Who will you need to help plan the event?

If you require audio/visual equipment and think that you might need a more advanced
lighting or sound arrangement than that which is available on site, you should discuss
this in advance with the venue manager. They may be able to recommend companies
who have worked on events there in the past whose experience will be beneficial in
planning what to do for your event.

For larger events with a team of people involved in organising the event, make sure
you all agree your roles and responsibilities early on in the planning stages. Having
a detailed plan and timeline will help you co-ordinate different areas of the event
planning, particularly where there are a number of people or departments involved.
Who will you need on the day?

The Universitys Media Production Unit has worked on a wide variety of events at
different venues around Oxford and may also be able to advise you: www.ox.ac.uk/
publicaffairs/mpu/
Photographers
Unless you are planning a public event, there can be issues around permissions to use
or reproduce photographs for an event. It is advisable to inform guests prior to the
event that there will be a photographer there and request that they should notify the
photographer on the day if they do not wish to have their photograph taken.
Remember to brief the photographer if there are any particular shots that you
would like from the event. It may also be useful to issue them with a badge or
other identification so that guests and staff are aware that they are the official
photographer. The Publications and Web Office can provide a list of photographers
who are used by the University. Email publications@admin.ox.ac.uk

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Event planning guidelines 2008

In addition to possible catering and audio/visual needs, you may need to consider
other staff to work at the event in stewarding or security roles, for instance. This
usually depends on the number of guests that you are expecting and the complexity
of the event. If you have several presentations happening simultaneously in different
rooms, you may need a member of staff present in each room to manage timing and
deal with any issues that might arise such as technical faults. Remember, you cant be
in two places at once!
Security/stewarding
If you think that an element of your event may pose a security risk, for example if you
have a high profile or controversial guest speaker, you should contact the University
Security Services through the Proctors Office. They should be able to advise you
on the appropriate level of security and/or stewarding for your event. You can also
contact the Events Office to discuss your particular requirements.

Event planning guidelines 2008

29

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Transport

Publicity

Transport requirements

If your event is going to be open to the public or University students, for example,
you will need to think about how best to advertise to your target audience. University
colleges and departments may be able to assist in disseminating information via
emails to students or staff or by displaying posters. If your event is open to the
public, you could display posters in public places (check first with the administrator)
or advertising in local newsletters and newspapers. There are also some local events
pages online, such as Daily Info: www.dailyinfo.co.uk

If your event requires guests or other attendees to travel, or if any of your guests
have specified that they need special transport provision, obtain quotes and book
transport with a reliable company as soon as possible. You should make it clear to
guests if they will need to travel from one venue to another during the event and let
them know whether transport will be provided or not. If you are planning to provide
transport, make sure that you know which guests have requested a place on it so that
you can tick them off as they board and no-one gets left behind.
Transport providers
The Events Office has used a number of local transport providers in the past and
would be happy to advise you on appropriate companies for your event and budget.

The University also has a number of resources which can be useful for advertising
certain events. These include The Gazette, Blueprint, Oxford Today and the University
website. Please contact the Publications and Web Office for more details on deadlines.
It may be appropriate to include some biographical information about a speaker or
host in your publicity material. In this case, contact their office in the first instance to
find out whether they have standard text which they use for this sort of thing. If they
are not able to help or point you in the right direction, you can usually pull together
information from the internet. However, you should always make sure that any text
you use has been approved by the person in questions office.
Insurance
There are several different types and levels of insurance involved in event
management that may be applicable to your event. In the first instance, you could
discuss what arrangements your venue has already and what additional arrangements
you might need. If you are unsure about what you may need, please contact the
Events Office.

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PLANNING YOUR EVENT

PLANNING YOUR EVENT

Table plans, place cards, badges

Badges

Table plans and place cards

Depending on the size and nature of your event, you may decide that it would be
appropriate for guests to wear badges. This can be useful at networking events, for
example, but is not usually done for smaller, more intimate events.

If the Vice-Chancellor or the Chancellor is hosting your event, you should send them
a draft copy of the table plan for the event one week in advance. If you have an
external or other VIP hosting the event, it would be good practice to offer a copy to
them in advance as well, if appropriate.
Usually the host sits in the middle of one of the long sides of a rectangular table,
next to the guest speaker, if there is one. You should also think about other internal
or external VIPs and where they are placed, as well as any sponsors. Where there
is more than one table, it is common practice for each table to have a host, often a
senior member of internal personnel. Couples should not be seated next to or directly
opposite each other. Ideally they should be seated on opposite sides of the table but
offset (one place removed from being directly opposite each other).

If you are planning an event at which guests will wear badges, make additional badges
for any guests who have not replied in case they turn up. You should also take some
blank badges and a marker pen for other unexpected guests.
As with place cards, it is not usually necessary to include the guests initials or gong
(i.e. the letters that appear after their name to signify qualifications or honours). You
may, however, consider including their job title and/or company or organisation where
appropriate. You can order boxes of badges and inserts from stationers or office
suppliers.

In addition to producing one or more copies of the overall table plan for display at the
event so that your guests can find out where they are sitting, it may be appropriate
to distribute individual table plans earlier in the event, for example at pre-dinner
drinks. This is particularly useful at very large dinners to avoid several hundred people
crowding round the table plans at the same time, trying to find out where they are
sitting.
You will need to provide place cards with names on to go on the table to make it
clear where people should sit when they reach the table. These are usually printed
on both sides so that the guest can easily find their own place and other guests
can identify who they are sitting next to or opposite. It is not usually necessary to
include the guests initials or gong (the letters that appear after their name to signify
qualifications or honours).

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33

EVENT PLAN CHECKLIST

PROPOSAL

EVENT PLAN CHECKLIST

GUEST LIST

VENUE

TRANSPORT

Discuss and complete budget

Agree guest list co-ordinator

Research possible venues

Obtain quotes

Approve proposal

Call for suggestions and circulate


guest list to relevant parties

Agree venue

Book transport

Reserve all required spaces at


venue

Confirm contact details and


routes

Agree event team and roles

FINANCES
Compile budget

Agree final guest list

INVITATIONS

Catering

Other

Obtain quotes

Signposting

Invitation approved

Approve menus with hosts and


VIPs where appropriate

Furniture (e.g. registration desk,


lecturn)

Invitations designed and printed

Design and print menus

Discuss proposed dates


internally and with VIPs

Invitations sent

Update caterers on numbers

Decorations (e.g. flowers, table


cloths)

Check proposed date with


Events Office

Monitor replies

Approve budget

DATE

Agree date

VIPs
Identify and approach VIP
Send event info to VIP office
Request VIP profile and special
requirements

Invitation and accompanying


information drafted

PUBLICITY

Seating requirements
Plan seating for lecture/
presentation and inform venue

Design and print publicity

Draft and approve table plan

Circulate to departments,
colleges, local press etc

Design and print menus


Update caterers on numbers

Audio/visual
Agree music/audio requirements
for speeches etc
Approach and brief photographer
if required

Available facilities (e.g. cloakroom, green rooms, parking)


Table plans, place cards, badges
Agree staffing and security
requirements
Insurance
Licences
Emergency procedures

EVALUATION
Complete evaluation form
Circulate form and feedback to
commissioner

Agree visual requirements e.g.


projectors and screens
Agree additional lighting
requirements

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35

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

The delivery of your event, including the layout, plans for setting up and staffing,
should be part of the planning process well in advance of the day itself. The more
thoroughly you are able to think things through and plan ahead, the more likely the
event is to run smoothly and be successful.

The run-up to the event

Re-confirm the date, location and timings for the event with the venue, VIP
offices, caterers, audio/visual technicians, event staff, transport and any other
key people or organisations involved in the event

Make sure that you have confirmed emergency exit procedures with the venue
so you, and other event staff, know what to do in the event of a fire or other
emergency on the day

Where necessary, produce briefings on VIPs for internal or event staff. Contact
the VIPs office in the first instance to find out whether they have standard
text which they use for this. If they are not able to help or point you in the
right direction, you can usually find information on the internet. However, this
information may not be accurate or up-to-date so you should always make sure
that any text you use has been approved by the VIP before it is circulated

Prepare table plans, place cards and badges where necessary. If you do what you
can in advance, you will allow yourself more time, however it is usually a good
idea to print the final table plan last as this is the least simple to amend where as
place cards and name badges can be swapped in or out if necessary

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

Setting up for the event


Try to imagine the venue with the event in full swing when you are setting up for the
event to ensure that you provide adequate space and signposting. Do you need to
consider:

Stewards/security/first aid
Signposting
A registration desk badges, programmes etc
Branding for the event such as table cloths, posters, displays
A cloakroom/coat rail
Additional lighting
Presentation plaques/awards/certificates
Reserved seating:

If your event includes a dinner with a seating plan, make sure you take any last
minute cancellations/additions into account on the day

If your event includes a lecture or presentation, make sure that the events
staff, hosts, speakers, any other VIPs and their guests have clearly reserved
seats with easy access to the stage

Staging and stage furniture such as lecturns, chairs and tables including cloths
and flowers

On-stage refreshments for speakers/panellists, e.g. water and glasses


Announcements will you want to announce dinner or ask guests to take
their seats? Make sure that the person who is going to do this knows what
they should say, where they should stand and what time they should make the
announcement. For large crowds you may need to consider using a microphone
or perhaps a gavel or bell
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DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

Managing the event on the day

Be prepared

Day plan

Take spare copies of the guest list showing who has accepted, sent their regrets or
not replied. Sort the list alphabetically by surname to save yourself time searching for
peoples names. It can also be useful to arrange it with those who have accepted and
not replied at the beginning of the list with those who have declined the invitation at
the end as they are less likely to come (although they do occasionally show up!)

It will be useful to compose a day plan which outlines the running order for the event
and helps you co-ordinate activities, guests and staff. It clarifies the roles of everyone
involved in delivering the event and sets out what is going to happen and where staff
need to be at certain times. You can use the day plan as a basis for briefing staff and
colleagues. You want to avoid a situation where you are the only person who knows
what is happening and who is responsible for different elements of the event.
Your day plan should include contact details with mobile phone numbers for
individuals and organisations who are involved in the event, such as speakers, hosts,
caterers, transport providers, etc. If there is a delay, change of plan or a problem, you
will then have all the information that you need to hand.
In some cases you may want to carry out a risk assessment. If you think this would be
appropriate for your event, please contact the Events Office for more information.
Briefing staff
Setting aside time to make sure that event staff know what they are doing is essential
for making your job easier on the day and helping to ensure that the event runs as
smoothly as possible. Try to meet with all staff who will be working on the event in
advance at the venue so that you can run through the process together and highlight
any potential difficulties or factors that had not yet been considered in the planning,
such as the number of staff required for stewarding, the location of the drinks/buffet
table, the green room for the VIPs/hosts/speakers.

Take spare copies of the table plan, speeches and menus, as well as blank badges and
place cards, if relevant to your event, as you may find that plans change at the last
minute. If possible, take a name badge and/or place card for any guests who have not
replied in case they turn up. Remember to take a good pen for writing on the day.
If you are setting up an evening event during the day and therefore not in the office,
arrange to check in with the office before the event starts to make sure you are
aware of any last minute changes/cancellations to the guest list, for example.
If you are not going to be in the office, give your mobile phone number to everyone
who is involved in organising and delivering the event so they can get in touch
with you. Make sure that you have a list of all the contact details of the staff and
contractors involved in the event, as well as any hosts or speakers.
Remember to fully charge your mobile phone before an event if it is going to be your
main method of contact for the day.

Depending on the size of your event, it may be useful to have supervisors for
different areas or activities, such as greeting and seating guests, setting up the
catering/drinks. Make sure that you book staff as early as possible and are clear about
your requirements so that you get the level of resources and skills that you need.
Your staff briefing should also include details on what to do in the event of a fire or
other emergency and whether there are any staff trained in first aid.

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39

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

Dont panic!

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

A VIP guest or dinner guest turns up who is not on the table plan or the
list of those who have accepted, but is on the original list:

It is more than likely that something will not go to plan on the day. If this does happen,
try not to panic as this will make you less able to think clearly and come up with an
appropriate solution. Below are some common examples of problems that can arise at
events:

Your VIP/host/speaker is running late:


See the VIP section under Planning your Event (p. 13) for advice and information
on steps to take to try to avoid this happening in the first place, such as providing
traffic information, clear maps and ample time for travel. However, there may well be
circumstances beyond your control which mean that the event may have to start late.
Keep your host and other speakers informed about what is happening and keep in
close contact with the person who is running late so that you can make a judgement
as to when they are likely to arrive.
If there are a number of speakers, it may be possible to rearrange the order so that
the person who is running late will appear last and the event can start on time. If this
happens, ask the host to inform the audience so everyone knows what is happening.
If the event cannot start without the person who is running late, you may need to
delay the start of the event. If possible, make the decision on this before the audience
is seated, waiting to begin. Always keep the audience informed if there has been a
change of plan.

This situation may not be so much of a problem if you are holding a reception or
lecture but may prove more difficult if you are holding a dinner. Make sure that you
have a full copy of the guest list with you, including everyone who has accepted, sent
their regrets or not replied.
Firstly and most importantly, if someone turns up who you are not expecting, you
should make them feel very welcome and not make them feel embarrassed while you
run around checking with other people about why they are there and why they are
not on the list. While it is necessary to double check with them that they are there
for the event that you are running and have not turned up on the wrong day for a
different event, it is not the right time or place to enter into the details of who they
replied to, how their reply went astray or who is responsible. The fact is that they are
there and you need to make sure that they enjoy the event.
You need to make sure that the guest feels comfortable it does not matter whose
fault it is that they are not on the list. Depending on the size of the event and the
timing of their arrival, you could take them over and introduce them to the host or
perhaps get them a drink. You can then liaise with the caterers to create an extra
place in an appropriate space at the table, there is sometimes room at the ends of a
long table, and use one of your spare place cards to label it.

A dinner guest has a specific dietary requirement that was not taken into
account in planning the menu:
Again the most important thing to do in this case is to make sure that the guest does
not feel uncomfortable or that they are causing a problem. It is not the right time or
place to enter into the details of who they sent the information to, how it went astray
or who is responsible. As soon as you have clarified what their requirements are,
consult with the caterers to find out what they would be able to provide.

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41

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

DELIVERING YOUR EVENT

A guest arrives who is not on the original guest list


This can happen for number of reasons and the way that you deal with it will usually
depend on the type of event you are having. If they have accompanied someone
who is invited and the nature of the event is such that they would be able to join,
you may decide that it would be appropriate to let them in. You can then use your
spare resources to create name badges etc where necessary. If it is not appropriate or
possible for them to join the event, it will usually be sufficient to explain the reasons
for this to them, such as limited seating or security protocols. It will be helpful if you
have specified on the invitation that the event is invitation only to try to avoid this
situation arising in the first place.
If a guest turns up unaccompanied to an invitation only event and is not on the
original guest list, you should be quite careful about whether to admit them. If they
are an employee of the University, and you think it would be appropriate for them
to attend, make sure you check their identification. If it would not be appropriate to
admit them, you should explain that this is an invitation only event with limited space
and unfortunately it is fully subscribed.
Try to remain as diplomatic as possible!

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43

EVALUATING YOUR EVENT

EVALUATING YOUR EVENT

Why evaluate?

Using your evaluation information

Evaluation does not have to be complicated or time-consuming but it is an extremely


useful tool for developing planning and delivery processes in the future. By evaluating
you are measuring how successful your event was against your aims and proposed
outcomes. You can also find out peoples opinions, monitor your spending against your
budget and think about what worked well and what didnt work well, providing useful
lessons for future events. This will inform your plans for future events making them
more successful and easier to plan.

What are you trying to find out through evaluation?

How to evaluate your event

Were your team, participants and audience satisfied?

There are two useful methods of evaluating your event:

What could you have done differently/better?

Monitor the planning process for your event against your event plan and timeline

What worked well?

as you go to find out whether you are keeping to schedule

Evaluate after the event to find out if you achieved your aims. You can do this
through feedback from other people who organised or attended the event,
including hosts and speakers etc. The Events Office has created a post-event
evaluation form which can be downloaded from the website

Did everything go as planned?


If not, why not? What could have been done to change this?
Were your objectives achieved?

What lessons did you learn for next time?


What should you do with the information from your evaluation?

Keep it for the next event


Feed back to your managers
Share it with the Events Office

Resource
You can download an

event evaluation template


on the Events Office website at
www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/
events/

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45

RESOURCES

RESOURCES

Event proposal template

Event Proposal - Draft

Event Proposal - Draft

University of Oxford Events Office

University of Oxford Events Office

EVENT NAME

Notes

Organisers name
Tel.
Email

DELIVERY
Proposed date of event
Location
Notes

Host

PURPOSE OF THE EVENT


What is the Event?
Event aim

VIP guests

Speech

Why are you having the


Event?
Objectives and key messages
of the Event

Other content

What will happen at the


Event?
Event format (e.g. reception,
dinner, concert, lecture)

Print requirements
A/V requirements
Dress code

Who is the Event for?


Target audience / guests
(and estimate of numbers)

Catering requirements
Guest list coordinator
Security issues
Authorisation and sign-off

Notes

ORGANISATION Who will plan and run the Event?


Event Commissioner/Owner

Evaluation

Other interested parties


Budget Source
Budget Estimate

8 July 2008

Confidential

1/2

The Event Proposal Template provides an overview of


the key elements of planning and delivering your event.

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Event planning guidelines 2008

8 July 2008

Confidential

2/2

You can adapt it by creating new sections to detail


specific elements of your own event.

Event planning guidelines 2008

47

RESOURCES

Event plan and timeline template

RESOURCES

Guidelines for completing event plan and timeline template


Please note: this template is not comprehensive and is designed to be adapted to your
specific needs

Insert your event name where indicated at the top of the template
Insert your event date in the format dd/mm/yy where indicated at the top of the
template

Todays date and the number of weeks to go until the event are calculated
automatically

Fill in the left-hand Activity column with all the tasks which are relevant to the

planning of your particular event. You can use the headers provided such as Set
the Date and Guest List or you can adapt it to a more suitable layout for your
event

Identify the person or department that is responsible for each of these tasks in
the By Who? column

Note the deadline for completion of each task in the By When? column
If you would like to complete the timeline element of the template as well:

Insert the date that each week leading up to the event commences in the Week
row

Complete the Weeks to Go row, counting down from the number which was
automatically calculated in the Weeks to go until event field

If required, fill in the University term week numbers in the Term Dates row. This

information can be very useful when thinking about the numbers of students and
staff who may be available for an event

Against each task in your Activity column, colour the field of the Week which
corresponds to the date which you have entered in the By When column

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49

RESOURCES

RESOURCES

Event budget template


Event name:

Example Event

Event date:

2nd July 2008

ITEM

Guidelines for completing Event Budget Template

Event Budget

BUDGET

Insert your event name where indicated at the top of the template
Insert your event date in the format dd/mm/yy where indicated at the top of the

ACTUAL

SURPLUS/
DEFICIT

INV
REC'D

INV
APPV'D

template

NOTES

Insert the total budget you have available to spend on the event under ACTUAL

INCOME: eg sponsorship

INCOME. Remember to include all availalble funds including those from external
sources, such as sponsorship

5,000.00
EXPENDITURE:
VENUE:
- hire charge

1,000.00

750.00

250.00

7/7/08

CATERING
- food
- drinks
- waiting staff

1,200.00
600.00
0.00

1,500.00
400.00
0.00

-300.00
200.00
0.00

5/7/08

PHOTOGRAPHY
- external
- internal

0.00
0.00

AUDIO/VISUAL
- external
- internal

0.00
0.00

TRANSPORT
- coach hire
- car hire
- other

400.00
50.00

350.00
20.00

0.00
0.00

PUBLICITY
- advertising

0.00

STAFFING
- external
- internal

0.00
0.00

SECURITY
- internal
- external

0.00
0.00

FLOWERS

0.00

TOTAL EXPENDITURE

INCOME LESS EXPENDITURE

3,250.00

3,020.00

the BUDGET column against the appropriate area. These figures should be based
on quotes and research

If you have specific costs which are not included on this general template, insert
a row and enter a header name for the cost and appropriate budget figures

When you know your exact costs for each element, enter this figure in the
ACTUAL column against the appropriate header

50.00
30.00
0.00

PRINTING
- Internal
- External

CONSUMABLES
- stationary
- phones

Enter the amount that you are budgeting for different elements of the event in

8/7/08

The budget template will automatically calculate whether there is a surplus or

deficit on your spending for each element. In other words whether you spent less
or more than you had budgeted. A surplus will be indicated as a positive figure
and a deficit as a negative figure

The template will also calculate your total budget, total actual costs and work out
whether you had a surplus or deficit between the two over all your costs. If this
figure is positive it means you remained within the budget that you set yourself;
if it is negative then you spent more than you had budgeted for the event

Finally the template will subtract your total actual costs for the event from your

income for the event. If this figure is positive it means you did not spend all the
money available for the event; if it is negative then you spent more than you had
available

0.00
0.00
0.00
230.00

You can also use the template to monitor the invoices for each cost as they are

1,980.00

received and approved to ensure that all costs are paid within the agreed period usually 30 days

8/7/08

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Event planning guidelines 2008

51

RESOURCES

RESOURCES

Event evaluation template

EVENT EVALUATION SHEET


SUMMARY:

FEEDBACK:

Event Name:
Event Type:
Please tick
appropriate:

What worked?
Ceremonial
Reception

Launch
Lunch

Opening

Dinner

Presentation

Press

_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________

Lecture Sports

_______________________________________________________
Other (please specify):_________________________________________
What didnt work?

Venue/s:
Date:

_______________________________________________________

Budget:

_______________________________________________________

EVENT DETAIL:

_______________________________________________________

Host:

Speaker/Presenter/
Lecturer:

Music:

What could be done


differently?

Caterer:

_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________

Other features:
Nos. Guests:

_______________________________________________________
External:

Internal:
OUTCOMES:

PROJECT TEAM:
Press &

Events Office coordinator/s:

Communications:
Commissioner/Client:

_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________

Contact Details:
Tel:

_______________________________________________________

Development:

Email:

_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________

FEEDBACK:

_______________________________________________________
Statistics/attendees:
Impact on Objectives/
Key Issues for Client:
_______________________________________________________

Which objectives

_______________________________________________________

met?

_______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

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The Event evaluation template covers some of the key


questions that should be asked after an event for an
effective evaluation of its success and to inform future
planning.

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Remember to look at all elements of planning and


delivering the event such as consultation processes and
working relationships, in addition to logistical successes or
difficulties.

Event planning guidelines 2008

53

Events Office
University of Oxford
University Offices
Wellington Square
Oxford OX1 2JD
T: 01865 280524
E: events@admin.ox.ac.uk
W: www.ox.ac.uk/public_affairs/events/