5 New Considerations for Your Venue RFP
Meetings and events will look different, and so should your RFPs.
As planners begin envisioning what the future of in-person events will look like, they will need to consider what is being asked on their RFPs. Now, more than ever, it is critical to gather and compare how each venue is handling the health and safety of its guests. We have highlighted five factors for planners to consider before sending out their RFPs to potential venues:
1. PPE – In case you missed it, PPE stands for personal protective equipment. It is important to ask your venue if they will supply items such as masks and disinfectants to their employees as well as your guests. Be sure to confirm what type of PPE is available, how it will be distributed and where it will be located. PPE can also include sneeze guards or a clear plastic barrier that is used to protect against contamination. Just as these are becoming a standard at grocery check-out lines, they will probably become more prevalent at hotel check-in counters and buffet tables.
2. Response Plans – What happens if one of your attendees shows symptoms of illness? What if it is a venue employee? If hotels and venues have been doing anything during these closures, it has been designing response plans for these exact scenarios. Ask your venue how they plan to handle these situations, and be sure these plans are thoroughly outlined with contact information for the nearest hospitals and phone numbers for local public health officials.
3. Physical Distancing – This is probably the most important factor to consider when comparing responses. What is the venue doing to enforce the CDC’s recommended 6 feet of social distancing? Planners should request to see updated capacity charts and sample diagrams. What was formerly a ballroom that could seat a 1,000‑person banquet may now only be able to seat 400. Not only will capacities and floorplans be affected, but make sure to ask how will they enforce these changes — with floor stickers, stanchions and room monitors?
4. Cleaning Process – Again, most hotels and venues have been preparing new processes for cleaning and disinfecting their properties and should be able to provide this information to their potential groups. Planners should hold the venues accountable and ensure their responses, include the four W’s – who is responsible for cleaning (housekeeping vs. facilities), what surfaces are going to be given extra attention, where sanitizing stations will be located and when (and how often) cleanings will be done.
5. HVAC Concerns – New information from the CDC suggests that proper ventilation can prevent the spread of the virus. Include questions on your RFP that specifically ask how often their building ventilation and filtration systems are serviced. Cleaning and maintenance are especially important for recently reopened buildings, as temporary shutdowns can create hazards like mold.
Still unsure if you’re ready to hit send on that RFP? Special D Events is available for individual consultation to help you gather the information you really need from potential venues. Click here to reach out to us directly and be sure to select “Other Consulting” in the drop down menu.