Six criteria to have in mind when selecting a hostess company
You have an event coming that you have been planning for months and as an event expert, you want to go a level higher and concentrate on making new partnerships and making sure your keynotes are well taken care of. So you plan to hire extra help in the means of hostess that can guide your delegates to the right areas, welcome people at the registration desk and provide that extra feeling of hospitality.
But how to make sure you pick the right company? There are many companies out there and so very little time in the hands of an event organizer. This blog piece should help you pick the right hostess agency.
Since the hostess will be perceived as the face of your event they should be intelligent, presentable, know all that needs to be known about your event to help your delegates and the list can go on and on depending on your requirements.
We have been through the steps, so keep reading to know these six tips should give all you need to make the right choice:
- Browse a few agencies
- Prepare the agenda of activities
- Payment terms
- Use technology
Tip 1 Browse a few agencies
Like many other services you should do some window shopping: go online and google some agencies. Also, ask the venue where you host your event if they can suggest a hostess agency.
Pick a few, reach out to them via their online contact forms. Mention the dates, location, the number of hostesses and the duration you will need them for. Prepare a simple text with that info and share it with all the agencies you found.
Reaching out to the agencies will test how quickly they will to respond to you. The quicker, the better. Don’t be swayed by fashion model websites because regardless if they are the best looking they very likely to be the busiest and most expensive.
If they reply quickly, that’s a good sign that communication will be fast. That’s what you need!
Also, narrow down your search to a hostess company that is in the same city where you will host your event as that will save you any transport costs. Depending on the number of the days and amount of hostess you need it can add up saving you a few hundred.
The sooner you reach out, the more prepared the hostess can be for your event, so don’t delay it till the last moment.
Tip 2 Prepare the agenda of activities
Prepare a draft brief of activities and a schedule. The later is likely to change as you get closer to the event, but you will know the total hours, which will give a more accurate quote.
Having the activities listed check with the hostess manager if they can prepare the best team for the job. You can, of course, ask for the profiles of the hostesses but to save time and if beauty looks are not a priority, then you will have a team with experience, and that is happy to assist in any question thrown at them. There is nothing worse than having someone great-looking but letting you down with a bad mood or not being able to help.
Think if you will need the hostess to know the local language. That may come very handy when they explain things to the local delegates. Plus they can help in translating questions that you may have to some of the technical or cleaning staff that may understand what you mean.
Tip 3 Payment Terms
Ask about the payment terms. The most beneficial are 50-50 payment terms. Where you pay 50% before the event and 50% after the event. These payment terms gives a nice flexibility to the organizer’s budget and the stimuli to the agency to give their best during the big day.
Tip 4 Uniforms
Check with the agency if they can offer different styles for a uniform that can best fit the theme of your event. Be it business casual, white shirts or whatever. Depending on the role you want the hostess to do you can provide them with company branded t-shirts. Which can be a great visual aid for delegates to know whom to ask, and it can be a highlight for your brand.
Tip 5 Pre-briefing
Pre-briefing. A very important step for the success and smooth running of the event. The more the hostesses are prepared, the better the service they will provide. It brings the event a level up if the hostesses can answer all the questions that the delegates ask them. Preparing an agenda in advance will help the hostess team to prepare for the event. Make sure they know where each room is located so that they can easily navigate delegates.
Very often on the first day of the conference, the registration desks get very busy, and the talks are beginning shortly after opening hours, so you need to be able to plan this — a bit of, what-if scenarios. You can instruct the hostess to let people in if it gets too busy. One wouldn’t want to have their keynote speakers facing a nearly empty room, because delegates are delayed at the registration desk. You need to act fast, and if you hostess team is aware of this you are one step ahead of your planning.
You can also show the hostess team, who may be the VIPs at your event so that they treat them with priority. But you can also have your team to take care of that.
Tip 6 Use technology
Use of technology in today’s events is almost a must to run things smoothly and efficiently. Imagine with one message you reach all hostess on different floors. Ask the head manager in advance of how they communicate with their team on site. WhatsApp, telegram there are many short messing systems where you can use. Create a group where you can easily reach the hostess team when you need to push an update to the plan. Way better than going around the venue looking for them. Other options for communication may be walkie talkies. Make the hostess aware of the WiFi login pass as that may be a frequently asked question.
You may want to count the number of people entering the rooms. A useful thing to sell to sponsors and to track your event stats. You can also provide a badge scanner, so you know who attended what session. Be mindful of GDPR rules and let the hostess team understand that some people may not want their badges scanned.