The end of the financial year is just around the corner and almost every boss and their employees know that it can be a crazy time. It can be really exhausting when everyone focuses on meetings about the annual budget, clearing the company’s tax details, going through performance reviews and preparing for next year’s budget.
Just like any normal person would do, everyone should take a break after accomplishing all the end of financial year tasks. Stop for a second, sit back and take a deep breath and plan a party to celebrate the year that has been. In fact, there are many reasons for you to have a party; it can be winning new clients, beating your annual budget, closing some big deals or adding new and valuable personnel to the team.
If you’re the office manager, office assistant or the event manager assigned to organise the party, you have to make sure you plan a fun event. Focus on building team spirit and congratulating employees for doing a good job. You have to rise above a notoriously boring and unimaginative company party.
Form a group to help you organise the party. You have to provide your “party team” some time away from their normal office tasks and provide all the resources they need in order to plan a top level event. If possible, include people from different departments that already have experience planning company events in the past.
Think about the goal of the party. Yes, the party is about celebrating the end of the financial year, but there should also be a purpose like recognising a team or an individual or celebrating a company milestone. Whatever the goal is, keep it fun!
#1 Working On The Details
Once your goal is established and you have a few people to help you plan the event, you can get started. Start working on the specific details of the event and the areas that needs to be covered. List all of the things that will need to be organised: budget, venue, catering, audio visual and entertainment.
Receiving and distributing the budget will get things rolling. Set the budget as a starting point of brainstorming ideas for venues, catering, entertainment, awards, decorations and gifts/prizes.
#3 The Venue
Choose a venue that is centrally located and can be easily accessed by everyone. It can be within the company premises (like a large conference or theatre room). If holding the event at the office or in the same building isn’t possible, choose an outside venue in the Sydney CBD or near your office so that everyone can get to the venue easily after work. Also, make sure that the venue is near a public transport so that everyone can go to the venue and get a ride home easily.
The venue you choose will depend on your budget, the number of people attending and the culture of your company. It can be a restaurant, a hotel ballroom, beach, a park, a bar or an entertainment complex. Make sure to ask your other colleagues if they know a great place that you can get for your party.
This is a great opportunity to treat the staff to an exclusive night out to a venue they wouldn’t otherwise be able to see. If you’ve got the budget for it, go all out.
#4 Food and Drinks
Arranging for the food and drinks is one of the most complex parts of the party process. Again, the budget will play a big part in the food and drink choices. The company culture, number of attendees and theme of the event will also affect your decisions about the catering.
The great thing is you’ve got lots of options. Think gourmet food, buffet catering or casual fare like burgers, BBQ, pizza, gourmet donuts, beer or wine. Alternative dishes should be available for people with special dietary requirements. No one should go hungry or thirsty!
Alcohol is a big part of any party, but consider limiting the alcohol especially if the event will be during office hours. If the party is after 5pm, then you can serve the beverages of your choosing. But consider limiting the beverage package to a small selection of beer, wine and some sparkling drinks with non-alcoholic options like water, sodas and juices to keep thing simple. This will keep everything under control without taking the fun out of things.
Set a meeting with your chosen caterer. It can be over the phone or a face to face meeting. A face to face meeting is better because you get to talk to the caterer and understand how they work rather than blindly putting your faith in them. A proposal will be created with the menus and the cost for your initial consultation if it applies.
Catering styles could be any of the following:
- Buffets and food stations - This can be a few gourmet platters or an elegant sit down dinner. It can also be food stations at one of your chosen venues.
- Cocktail party – High quality canapes and gourmet finger food that will have all the guests raving. A premium selection of wine can also be served to show everyone that they are appreciated.
- BBQs and picnic style party – This is one of the most fun styles because everyone can be as casual as possible. The caterer will be on cooking duty with your favorite BBQs fares to be served with ice cold beers, soda and wine.
#5 Audio-Visual System
If you’re doing the party within the office premises, you can hire third party AV equipment. The better option is choosing a venue that already has this equipment and can set it up according to your needs and your vision for the event. Design your own lighting scheme and choose the ambient music.
You can hire a DJ or a live band if your budget permits. Music helps any situation and will let staff relax and enjoy the event. Ask around the office for the best local live bands and check their availability. If it gets too tricky to organise a band just go for a DJ or even better, start an office playlist with input from everyone.
When planning an end of financial year party, it’s best to prepare early so that all the details can be ironed out before the event and everything will go according to plan. Let’s party!
Want Laissez-faire Catering to take care of your EOFY event? Give us a call and start getting organised today.