When the time comes to attend your exhibition, you want to ensure you are prepared for all the eventualities that it may bring. By staffing it right you can avoid many of the common hiccups that exhibitors find themselves enduring thought the event.
The number of staff you should bring to an exhibition though depends on various factors. Before rushing to the rota there are some key points to factor in, including the size of the exhibition space you have, the nature of your business, and the goals and objectives you have set for participating in the event.
At Nomadic, we have spent many years helping people perfect their exhibition stands and guiding them on best practices when attending a host of different event types.
In this edition of our blog, we aim to advise you on the best ways to determine staff levels. That way, not only can you deliver a premium service, but you can keep the business costs controllable.
Selecting the right staff for your exhibition
Before even working out how many team should be at your event, it would be best to make sure you have the right kind of personnel available. You want to make sure there are those confident enough to engage with new customers and those that have benefitted from the exhibition stand staff training you should have scheduled before the event are available.
Illustrate to them the importance of creating a good first impression at an exhibition as well as why you are attending and what you expect from them. From here you will be able to pick out the stronger characters and have a squad ready for you to rotate as and when needed or use all at the same time should it be necessary.
What size exhibition space do you have?
Now that you have a squad in place, consider the size of your exhibition space. You don’t want your exhibition stand to be overcrowded with your event staff or difficult for visitors to navigate as team members are in the way, but you want enough people on hand to manage crowds and engage with visitors.
If you are demoing products your space may be larger than normal so you may want slightly more team to cover it. But then if you are just looking at lead capture at your event, you may only have a small space but should it be an in-demand service, you could find that it gets overwhelmed quickly as your team collect data and answer questions. So then do you staff up and fill your limited space, or keep staff levels lower but risk people waiting around to be seen? The next two parts of this section might just help!
Always assess the flow of your space and how you can spread the team across it in a way that doesn’t appear cluttered but allows for visitors to always have someone on hand to assist.
Sometimes, it can be wise to overstaff on day one to assess the audience, but this can be harmful to team morale if you were to send someone home and keep other people on. You could always benefit from sending team members out onto the venue floor to try and drum up new visitors!
How much traffic are you expecting?
Find out previous visitor numbers from the organiser. If it’s a popular event with high attendance, you may need more staff to accommodate the increased traffic. Also, consider if specific times of day will be busier than others. You can then factor breaks in around these times and should it be a long event, rota team members accordingly with rotation of people throughout the day. Splitting the shifts to utilise the team strengths but also suit the needs of the business.
Don’t just go on visitor numbers though. Look at what your business is doing at the event. Certain types of exhibition stands draw bigger crowds than others and if you are a fully interactive, immersive stand, you will likely see higher numbers than the stands handing out flyers or just waiting for customers to come to them.
What are your stand objectives?
Think about the level of engagement and interaction needed with visitors depending on your objectives. If your products or services require detailed explanations or demonstrations, you may need more staff members to ensure each visitor receives adequate attention. Maybe you could implement a system on your stands to move people through depending on their requirements or interest.
If you’re primarily focused on generating leads, you may need more staff to engage with visitors and collect contact information. If your goal is to network and establish connections, you may need fewer staff members. Always remember to train your staff and give them clear targets and objectives for the show.
Create a rota for shifts and breaks
Remember to account for breaks and rest periods for your staff. Exhibition days can be long and tiring, so having multiple shifts or rotating staff members can help ensure everyone remains fresh and engaged throughout the event. This not only rejuvenates the team but will also ensure that any visitors always get someone that is fresh and ready to go rather than someone that has been repeating the same sales patter for 5 or 6 hours!
Do you need additional support staff?
In addition to staff members directly interacting with visitors, you may also need staff for logistical support, such as setting up and dismantling the booth, managing literature and promotional materials, or handling technical equipment. Make sure you factor this into the people you need to smoothly run your event.
Ultimately, the number of staff you bring to an exhibition should strike a balance between providing adequate coverage and ensuring a positive experience for visitors while managing your resources effectively. It can be helpful to evaluate past experiences, consult with your team, and consider the specific requirements of the exhibition to make an informed decision. We always recommend you debrief after every event so you can improve on the next. Need further exhibition help? Speak to the team at Nomadic. Our extensive work in the event industry has seen us help people turn exhibitions into a success for years. With sustainable exhibition stands allowing you to save money, exhibition stand designers giving you the best-looking POS, and our fully reconfigurable event stands mean you can use them again and again no matter your event space!