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A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Nine Outside Suppliers.

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Presentation on theme: "A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Nine Outside Suppliers."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Nine Outside Suppliers

2  Providing Other Client Services  Audiovisual  Entertainment  Lighting  Ground Transportation  Government Agencies  Cooperating with Other Caterers  Rental Companies

3  Some catered events require much more than food and beverage service.  In addition to food and drink, some meeting planners will need audiovisual and/or lighting services.  Some will require specialized dining and buffet-table presentations.

4  Caterers cannot be all things to all people.  They must draw the line somewhere.  Cost considerations render it virtually impossible to store and/or provide all of the special types of services meeting planners might potentially need. 

5  When dealing with services other than food and beverage, caterers usually are faced with five options:  Provide as many of them as possible themselves.  Steer meeting planners to outside service contractors.  Expect meeting planners to find their own outside service contractors.  Authorize concessions.  Use some combination of these four possibilities.

6 Outside Service Contractors  Decorator  Designer  Audiovisual  Lighting  Photographer  Transportation  Media coverage  Specialized security  Printer  Host/hostess  Talent bookers  Florist  Specialized food ( e.g., subcontracting a sushi bar from a local Japanese restaurant)  Furniture  Exhibit equipment (e.g., pipe and drape, pop-up booths, etc.)

7  Some caterers have a list of approved outside service contractors they recommend.  The list includes only those contractors they feel are capable of doing the job properly.  To be placed on the approved list, contractors normally must have adequate references, proper licensing, and adequate insurance. ....

8  A caterer does not want to risk recommending someone whose ineptitude will cause dissatisfaction and ruin the chances of repeat patronage.

9 In-house Concessionaires  Large hotels, convention centers, and conference centers that do not want to provide their own special services, yet do not want to inconvenience potential clients, may grant a few outside service contractors concession status.  These contractors automatically receive a client's business unless he or she wants to make other arrangements with another service contractor.

10 In-house Concessionaires  Large properties usually allocate the concessionaire storage space so equipment and materials can be kept on- site.  The concessionaire also will need space to house employee work areas.  Usually the concessionaire has its own backup warehouse facilities off-site.

11  By having on-site space groups can be serviced quickly and efficiently.  Employees and equipment are readily available at a moment's notice; emergencies or last-minute requests can be handled immediately.

12 In-house Concessionaires  Caterers usually charge a commission to in-house vendors.  Understand that these costs must be passed on to the end user.  With high commissions, a meeting planner may end up paying a higher fee for a simple slide projector.

13 In-house Concessionaires  Some caterers charge outside vendors who are not part of their in-house group a surcharge for the right to work in the venue.  This is done to discourage the meeting planner from using a favorite vendor.  This ensures that the caterer will not lose its commission and satisfies the caterer that the service will be provided correctly.

14 Entertainment  Many catered events offer some type of entertainment.  Responsibility for booking, scheduling, and coordinating is up to the planner.  The caterer's major involvement in the entertainment decision is to take it into account when planning the catered event.  If a dance band is scheduled, everything from banquet setup to work scheduling will be impacted.

15 Entertainment  The banquet setup crew may have to work around the band’s road crew, affecting the banquet setup crew’s normal work schedule.  Considering the major impact that entertainment will have, caterers cannot work effectively unless they are privy to this information.

16 Entertainment  Be sure the caterer sees the entertainment contract before you sign it.  There may be conditions that the caterer cannot meet or will require you to pay extra for.

17 Entertainment  Lighting requirements  Dressing room requirements  Sound systems  Rehearsal time and facilities needed  Setup time  Security  Staging Requirements

18 Entertainment  Dance floor  Buffer area  Liability  Complimentary F&B, Lodging  Operational logistics

19 Lighting  Overcome a plain, pedestrian environment.  Highlight persons, products, and specific function room décors.  Illuminate speakers and other entertainers.  Focus attention on a particular spot.  Create an exciting and dramatic dance floor.  Frame an area.  Follow awardees from their seats to the stage.  Provide other decorative touches.

20 Lighting  Lighting can also be used to tell a story.  Laser equipment can project company logos, pictures of awards recipients, and names of VIPs on a wall so that attendees can view them when they enter the facility.

21 Ground Transportation  Some ground transportation firms specialize in providing limousine service.  They can pick up and drop off attendees as well as be on call for personal needs during conventions.  Shuttle or motor coach service often is employed by the meeting planner because it is more efficient and, in most cases, a lower-cost alternative to using taxicabs. 

22 Ground Transportation  A few ground transportation companies specialize primarily in entertainment.  Some trips, such as charter boat rides and trail rides, are planned strictly for their entertainment value.  The Napa Wine Train is an example.

23 Motorcoaches  Busses are usually booked per coach on a four- to five- hour minimum rate.  Busses can be booked on a daily rate if you need them all day.  A daily rate is usually less expensive than booking them for only a few hours.  Busses charge from the time they arrive at the pickup site to the time they drop off passengers; however, some calculate their time from garage to garage.  In this case, the meter is running from the time the coach leaves the coach company until it returns to the coach company.

24 Motorcoaches  Most companies do not charge garage to garage, but if it is a busy time, a regional coach company may not have the inventory; in that case, it would subcontract the job to a coach company that is outside the city.  When this happens, you usually would be charged garage to garage.  Find out what you’re paying for.

25 Motorcoaches  Are driver tips included in the charges?  What about staffing?  Will staff be on-site to load luggage, coordinate the transfers, and communicate with dispatch?  If so, what are the charges for staffing?  How many staff should you have?  Typically, staff is paid on a four-hour minimum; the cost also includes a positioning fee (i.e., parking/cab fees, etc., for the staff person).

26 Motorcoaches  Will there be signage on the coaches?  Will staff have communications with all other staff, dispatch, and drivers?  Where will motor coaches stage?  How much time before your event will they stage?

27 Government Agencies  Inform the fire department if you are putting on outdoor pyrotechnics.  Make sure that the pyrotechnics company has the appropriate liability insurance, typically $1 million.  The fire department may also need to oversee and inspect any portable electrical power setup to ensure it is grounded properly and safe to use in a public area.  In some jurisdictions, a fire marshal must approve banquet room setups to ensure guests will be able to evacuate safely in the event of a fire.

28 Government Agencies  The local health district would need to approve portable, temporary tents, cooking lines, and serving lines to ensure you are not violating health guidelines.  You may need special parking permits for motor coaches, parade permits, or a temporary off-site liquor license.  If an event will include a public official, such as a city mayor or state governor, speaking at a meeting, you may be dealing with bodyguards or, in the case of the President of the United States, the Secret Service.

29 Rental Companies  Audiovisual  Refrigerated storage  Freezer storage  Generators  Transportation  Tables and chairs  Tableware (flatware, china, etc.)  Service utensils  Napery (at times meeting planners want colors or patterns the facility does not own)  Centerpieces (meeting planners often rent or bring in their own centerpieces)  Lighting  Tents

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