Planning a conference or other large-scale corporate event is a huge undertaking. With so many details and logistics to keep track of, it’s important to have a well-crafted plan to ensure all the steps come together smoothly—from pre-event planning to post-event review.
These conference planning tips will guide you through the process so you can plan and produce your next corporate event with confidence. Use our free conference plan template to save time and effort and get your plan off the ground more quickly.
If you’ve managed an event before, you’ve surely created some kind of plan or to-do list for all the work needed to pull off the event. But maybe you never built out a comprehensive conference timeline you could easily track and collaborate on with your team and stakeholders.
Here are just a few ways having a detailed conference planning timeline benefits you:
No two conferences are the same. But most large-scale corporate events share the same core activities, even if the specifics differ.
Let’s break down 5 major phases you’ll want to include in your conference plan.
Yep, even your planning needs a plan. 😊 The pre-planning phase provides a solid foundation you can build the rest of your event plan on.
So before diving into logistics, nail down core conference info, such as your target audience, event budget, and general program. If you need any approvals to move forward, be sure to account for the time it may take to secure these in your plan.
The logistics phase includes all the key activities that essentially make your event. It’s likely where you’ll spend the bulk of your time, effort, and resources as you lock in event details, negotiate contracts, and secure vendors, entertainment, and services for your event.
Large-scale corporate events like conferences and trade shows require consistent communication that’s on point and on brand. They also need to be promoted across a variety of channels, such as an event website, social media accounts, email, paid ads, and PR.
You can track and manage all these communication efforts in your event plan to ensure word gets out right on schedule. This makes it easy to keep everyone in the loop so nothing falls through the cracks.
Want to dive even further into event promotion? Check out our event marketing and promotion template.
A key success metric for your event will most likely be ticket sales (or registrations, if your event is free). It’s important to properly price tickets and carefully monitor sales (or registrations) so you can adjust your strategy as needed along the way. For instance, you may need to extend your early-bird pricing window or beef up ad spend to hit your sales goals.
A big-budget event will require follow-up with everyone who had a stake in the event. Here are some questions you’ll want to discuss as a team:
Capture any important notes or plan adjustments as you go. For instance, you might document why something got delayed or went over budget. That way, you can easily reference takeaways and use lessons learned to build a tighter plan for your next event.
We created a free conference plan template you can use to plan your next big event. It’s a perfect base to build upon if you want to get a quick start on planning.
Feel free to customize the template to fit your event’s unique needs. It’s flexible enough to adapt to any large-scale corporate event, whether you’re planning a conference, trade show, or festival. You can use this template to:
Let’s dive into some other helpful ways to use this corporate event planning template.
A conference plan is your first step to event planning success. Let’s look at a few examples of how you can use our conference planning template to plan and manage corporate events in TeamGantt.
Get the most out of your conference plan by viewing it as a gantt chart—a visual timeline of the tasks in your plan. This format is great for scheduling out tasks and making sure everything comes together correctly across your plan.
Sometimes one task needs to happen before the next can begin (like preparing an event proposal before it can be approved, as shown in the example below). Dependencies ensure tasks always happen in the right order, even if you move things around.
Invite team members to your conference plan, and assign them to the tasks they need to work on. It’s an easy way to keep everyone in the loop on their role in making the event a success.
With TeamGantt, your important files and conversations can live in a single place. Attach documents such as quotes, proposals, budget spreadsheets, vendor contact info, and more! Use comments to communicate updates and collaborate with team members on all the hard work that goes into a corporate event.
Want to transform your event plan into a calendar? Simply select Calendar in the top navigation bar of your plan. This format allows you to get an intuitive look at how tasks stack up on any given day, week, or month.
This simple view makes it clear to see what you need to work on each day. It pulls in all the tasks you’re assigned to across projects, which can be super-helpful if you’re running multiple corporate events. No more digging through emails or Excel spreadsheets to plan your daily to-do list!
Ready to start planning your next corporate event? Use our conference planning template in TeamGantt, and save time on project setup!
Customizing the template is quick and easy, thanks to TeamGantt’s drag and drop simplicity. And since everything’s online, your whole team can collaborate on activities in real time.