Site Surveys 101

Planning for an event can, at times, feel overwhelming. Holding a site survey can help ensure an event of any size goes off without a hitch. But it’s more than just seeing the room and checking off a list. A site survey is the time to help solve and anticipate any on-site issues you might run into and to make sure your entire crew will be on the same page with accurate information.

A great event production partner will help you ask the right questions and anticipate those issues so the weight is off your shoulders and you can worry about more exciting things, like the keynote speakers and nightly entertainment.

Here’s a list of the 3 questions you should be sure to ask on your site survey:

When do we really get the room? When do we have to be out of the room?

Well this question is clearly a twofer, but they might be some of the most important questions you’ll need to ask. Knowing this information ahead of time curbs surprises with labor, travel and last-minute changes. Anything in the room before or after your event can affect the time you have to transform it into the spectacular production you have planned.

Where are the chandeliers, how big are they and can they move?

Nothing will ruin the mood more than a chandelier blocking your projection. Some venues have movable lighting that allows you to customize the location of any star pieces so they won’t distract or block any important screen access. If you can’t move them, you can work around them with rear projection and carefully placed screens. You don’t want to learn about those restrictions on-site.

What are the specific needs of this room and how will we get to it?

Every room in a venue will have different restrictions and limitations. Make sure to ask for a list so you understand any additional costs they’ll assess. Think power, labor contracts, rigging limitations, and dock access. Ask for a room drawing and make sure you have a map of the facility that includes dock locations and load-in sites. Armed with that information, you’ll be able to get a better estimate for the expenses and labor for on-site pre- and post-production.

BONUS PRO TIP: Measure the room yourself with a laser – especially the ceiling height. Accurate measurements translate to accurate on-site execution. Many drawings from the venue will have slightly inaccurate measurements and if you don’t ask the right questions you’ll be scrambling to make on-site adjustments you could have planned for in the original design.


BONUS PRO TIP: Make sure to consider the size of your production when you pick a room at a venue. The size requirements they present are always capacity for dinner with tables – no stage, no production.

So what next? Call us first! We’ve produced events in venues from meeting rooms to ballrooms to convention centers and, with our decades of experience, we’ve perfected the production of events of all sizes. From the moment we answer your RFP we’re researching and confirming that what we’re presenting is attainable in the space you’ve chosen. And when it comes time to do a site survey, we remove the stress and do all the heavy lifting. Ready to talk? Find our contact information here.

By | 2017-05-16T20:00:42+00:00 March 20th, 2017|Client Service|0 Comments

About the Author:

Bartha was founded in 1946. That longevity is testament to the company’s commitment to the creation, production, and staging of live events. We help clients communicate in innovative ways. We design environments that enhance the experience. We create content that informs, excites, and motivates. We deliver flawless live performances.

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