Hello ACUI Colleagues!
We here at the University of California, Riverside's HUB Scheduling Office are looking into adding another Senior Event Manager onto our team as the volume of events has increased tremendously since opening a new building. We are reaching out to see how other campuses' event scheduling offices operate. We currently have 2 Senior event managers whom process all events in our student union and the new Student Success building, plus the larger outdoor events (i.e. Concerts, fairs) and any complex events in academic classrooms. Then we have 1 Event Specialist that process all of the weekly academic classroom requests for non-academic events, small-medium outdoor events, and manages our digital signage program and display cases. The 2 senior managers are on a bi-weekly rotational schedule of processing but, the event specialist is not on a rotational schedule. We also are all on a weekly rotational schedule of office duties which include answering phones, assisting walk in traffic, and responding to our general email account. We look forward to hearing from you all as to how much staff you have, how the roles/positions vary, how the workload is equitable, and any other information you think might be relevant.
Thank you all in advance!
Steve Coole (He/Him)
Coole Insight Ltd
Follow us on LinkedIn: Coole Insight Ltd: Overview | LinkedIn
Tel: 07811 305 376
Registered Office: Coole Insight Ltd, 184 Henleaze Road, Henleaze, Bristol, BS9 4NE
Event Services here at WT manages 3 large venues, 2 Athletic Facilities (for non-athletic/ non-university events), classroom reservations and outdoor space reservations. There's 4 Pro Staff in our office, Senior Director of Campus Community(in charge of 4 departments), Assistant Director of the Student Center, Events Coordinator, Production Services Coordinator.
I am the Events Coordinator and I have a team of two student Event Services Assistants (ESAs), who process the reservations. We process approximately 500 reservations a month between all the spaces. I also supervise our Event Managers and Info Desk Attendants. The Production Services Coordinator supervises A/V Techs and Ops Crew. Event Services operates out of one shared email address, and the ESAs are the main ones processing those emails. They also are the ones answering the phones when they are on shift. When I don't have an ESA on duty, I answer that line. If none of us are here the Info Desk Attendants answer the phone for us. The Info Desk is the main point of contact for our staff, they are the gatekeepers for any assistance. If it is something more specialized they come get the appropriate staff member in the office to assist.
My ESAs share work based on seniority. Currently, they both process exhibitor tables and meeting rooms as they come in. My senior ESA handles large events and non-university, while my junior ESA handles classrooms and large events.
I am losing my senior ESA soon, so I have a chance to shake things up! I would love to know how others operate and if I can make this process better!
Hope this helps!
Prior to my time as CEO of Unique Venues, I was the General Manager of an on-campus year-round conference center. From my experience, here are two ways to consider coming to an answer.
Generally, the number of staff you have focused on event scheduling should tie back to the number of annual events that you are booking, with suitable back-up for vacations, sick leave, etc. It might be interesting to know how many events per year your office is booking, and for others to compare their staff size and number of bookings in their responses. I do not know that I have ever seen an 'industry average' of how many events per person a staff member can book, as it is impacted by the complexity of the events and the complexity of the electronic systems or business practices that you follow. It seems like you have struck a good balance with the workload on your team to meet the number of annual events that you book.
Strangely, and I wish I could remember where I saw this, maybe the ACCED-I benchmarking study once mentioned that the average revenue number per staff is $500,000 in estimated revenue managed per event staff member. For internal events, you would need to apply an amount as if it were fully invoiced to get the right estimate.
Finally, one thing that we see regularly in our consulting services is the use of student employees to handle some of the more routine office support responsibilities, such as answering phones, responding to walk-in traffic, entering basic meetings into the system (such as meetings for student clubs and orgs, or those with standard room sets and no food or basic food requirements). This frees the career staff to focus more attention on the higher-need events, as well as potentially engage in some outbound sales and outreach activities to bring more business into the facility. There can be a bit of a training lift as students turn over, but we have often found that career staff enjoy the process of teaching and mentoring students in these types of roles, and students definitely bring a different level of energy to the office. Something to think about.
I look forward to seeing the other responses, as well, as it continues to inform our experience for the clients that we work with. If you would like to talk more with me directly about anything else that we have experienced in relation to event scheduling offices, I'd be happy to do so.