A common misunderstanding is that once the event has been held, the work is done. Quite the opposite, alongside the large amount of work still to be done with financial management, surveys and presentation material management, one of the most important resources that event organisers should produce is a comprehensive report.
Event reports are extremely useful for future event planning, KPI and business analysis and can provide material for business development activities or tenders.
The following list is an example of the main headings and sub-headings you can include in a post-event report.
Create a half-full page summary that you can use for post-event marketing, reports or business development that provides a high-level overview of the events and the key activities.
Include the client, committees, staff and volunteers (supplier contacts if appropriate).
Venue & Location
Provide an overview of the venue and the location, including any images of session rooms, external building or key features of the town/city.
Registration & Accommodation
Key dates (early bird – standard), statistics during the registration period (how many early bird versus standard or adult versus child etc.) and accommodation options (if applicable)
Marketing and Promotion
Include schedules, example newsletters or eBlasts, social media details (ads, hashtags, handles). Also include the event logo and collateral (post-cards, adverts) and website details (URL, analytics, page overviews).
Sponsorship & Exhibition
An overview of the campaign with confirmed sponsors and exhibitors, revenue totals, in-kind contributions.
Details on access for pre-conference (registration form, website meeting WCAG guidelines) and onsite (audio description, braille, interpreting, familiarisation tour).
Details and examples (photos from onsite are great) of program book, pocket program or guide, satchel or delegate gift, name badge and lanyard, tickets.
Details (including statistics) and photos of any breakfast events, gala dinners, golf days etc.
Include examples of the signage produced and where this was placed. Include sponsor acknowledgement, menu cards etc.
Provide a copy of the menu, what the catering numbers were for each day (and actual attendance if possible), percentage of dietary requirements etc.
Provide a detailed description for call for papers process, program committee, structure (plenary versus concurrent) how changes were managed onsite, presenters and gifts
Include a copy of the risk assessment and any incident reports (if applicable).
Provide a copy of the survey questions and/or results. This information is really valuable to future event organisers.
Include a detailed or high-level version of the budget, which clearly identifies the final financial position of the event.
Most importantly, be sure to include some key recommendation for future iterations of the same event, or other events organised by the organisation. This should include valid suggestions by the staff, clients and delegates.
TIP: It’s often helpful to create an ‘external’ report that can be provided to stakeholders and the client, in addition to an ‘internal’ report, that can be used to capture additional details and kept within the organisation.
Would you add anything else? Let us know!