Corporate events can help your company improve morale, disseminate important information to employees and encourage camaraderie in a relaxed setting. Although the Alberta economy is not at its peak condition, you can throw a corporate event on a budget and reap the benefits. These six tips will help you reduce event costs and ensure that your event is a great success.

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Keep Your Event Local

There are many advantages to holding events locally, including lower transportation costs for your staff and guests. You can also save money if you rent a local venue instead of hosting it in a major city where spaces often come with hefty price tags. The Alberta area offers plenty of venues with fabulous spaces at great prices.

If you plan to host more than one event, you may be able to negotiate a year-long contract with a venue owner and save some money. These event spaces want your business and may offer a discount if you make a long-term commitment to work with them.

Create a Budget

There are many considerations when planning a corporate event, and it’s important to think about them all before making any commitments. Typical costs include the rental space, transportation, decorations, audiovisual equipment rentals, speaker honorariums and fees for DJs or performers. Calculate these costs separately, and decide which ones are essential.

Create a contingency fund that is equal to about 10 percent of your budget. You can use this fund if the event is over budget due to rescheduling, canceled entertainment or cost overruns.

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Monitor Catering Costs

Catering may account for a significant percentage of the overall corporate event budget, often up to 30 percent when you take into account food costs, service and tips. Cut expensive foods and drinks that push you over budget. You don’t need to serve caviar, filet mignon and fine wines unless you’re throwing an event with a large budget.

Determine menu costs upfront. If you can lock in a price for your menu, you’ll avoid being surprised by the catering bill at the end of the event. Ask if certain basics, like tea and coffee, can be complimentary, and don’t be afraid to speak with the event chef if you need menu suggestions. The perfect example of a cost-effective corporate event involves crafting a menu based on local and seasonal foods, which is something the chef can help you implement.

Charge a Reasonable Admission Fee

Charging a small admission fee is one way to ensure that you can afford a more lavish event that features the best food and entertainment. Employees and guests may be willing to pay a bit more if it means they’re getting more.

Be Flexible

Corporate events are extremely popular during certain times of the year, such as during the holidays and around New Year’s Eve. If you avoid these times of the year, you may be offered a significant discount on your corporate event.

Work with an Expert

A corporate event planning consultant can help you find the most cost-effective solution when planning an event. Event planners often have special arrangements with venues that offer discounted prices to clients. Sharing your budget and special considerations with your planner will help ensure that the event meets your needs and expectations.

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Simply Elegant can help you plan the perfect event for the right price. We offer transparent pricing, expert support from beginning to end and years of experience hosting events in the Alberta area. Visit our corporate events section and let us know how we can help you create a corporate event to remember.