Packing may seem like an afterthought, but don’t let it become one any longer. For planners, it is vital to have a game plan in place, or you are bound to forget things. After all, nothing is more important than your event valuables being on time, intact, and easily accessible. So how do you ensure this happens?
Cvent’s Event Team has had a lot of practice with this, one of the biggest of our challenges being Cvent CONNECT.
Here are a few steps to help streamline your packing process.
Step 1: Pick a Packing Location That Makes Sense
It is critical to keep everything in one place and organized. This year we altered our packing location and it made our process more efficient. Prior years’ packing had been conducted in a conference room, as well as the hallway outside of it. This was unorganized and distracting to the workplace environment. Access to the room also varied, so overall it was a bad location.
So, ask yourself, what’s something so simple that you may overlook it?
This year we moved the process to our building’s storage area. The reason for this was simple: the truck that carries our packages enters the loading dock 20 feet from this storage area, so the distance traveled was much shorter, and easier, than our previous route which included the seven floors, multiple elevators and badged doorways we had to endure before. No part of this was easy, so we changed it.
By moving the packing location, the time we spent loading our packages onto the delivery truck decreased from 1.5 hours with 12 people to 15 minutes with two people. The team was shocked at how such a simple switch changed everything. So, ask yourself, what’s something so simple that you may overlook it?
Step 2: Create a Master Spreadsheet
One key to our success is our Master Google Doc because it viewed and/or edited at any time.
The trick is to separate the doc into the following sheets: Printing Requests, Packing Requests, Purchasing Request, Shipping (Internal/External), and Contacts (Internal/External).
These sheets contain all the nuts-and-bolts for the event, keeping all planners aware of what is going on. Make sure to stay on top of this spreadsheet!
Our other secret is to appoint one person in charge of each sheet. This keeps everything that much more organized.
Step 3: Use Color Coded Box Labels
Create a label system to keep you organized internally. Number your boxes and keep documentation in the Master Doc to ensure they can always be referenced. Color code your labels based by what team that box belongs to.
Our labels included:
- Venue Address & Cvent’s POC (name & cell #)
- Event Name/Event Date(s)
- Location Onsite
- Box #
- From (Your Address)
Step 4: Keep your Google Doc Concise
Once you start packing, make sure to enter the box contents into your Master Doc. Make the descriptions as detailed as possible and be sure to include all tracking information.
Our Google Sheet included:
- Internal vs. External Shipping
- Internal Requestor (POC)
- Box Number/ Number of Boxes in Shipment
- Location Onsite
- Shipment Vendor
- ETA – Delivery
- Tracking #
- Delivery Status
- Confirmation of Delivery Onsite
Step 5: Stay on Track
Make sure to stay on top of each step in this process. Don’t let the chaos of the event get the best of you and remain calm! Utilizing these steps will change your packing process forever.
Stay tuned for the next blog in my series of simple steps, Simple Steps for Event Success: Happy Hours