Defining Event Scope

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This table will help you identify the scope and scale of your event, and help ensure you're comfortable with how large, complex, risky and well financed it will have to be.

The folks over at Maker Faire have a similar table for reference.

Attribute Small Medium Large Very large
Example of type of event User group meeting BarCamp / unconference Software Freedom Day linux.conf.au
Number of attendees 5-30 25-150 100-400 400-650
Amount of funding required to run event Possibly $100 to cover venue and possibly beer/pizza/nibbles Around $1000-$2000 to cover venue and possibly food Depends on scope, between $2000-$7000 $200,000 +
Amount of time commitment required from Event Leader and organisers 2-3 hours per session Around 5 full days over several weeks Around 10-15 full days over several months Around 20-40 full days over 1-2 years
Number of stakeholders and suppliers that need to be managed 2-3 5-10 8-20 20+
How big your core organising team will need to be 1-2 2-5 5-10 8+
How much media, marketing and promotion will be required Minimal - use of email lists, Twitter and Facebook, word of mouth Some - use of email lists, Twitter and Facebook (including paid advertising), word of mouth, posters, possibly advertising in local newspapers and newsletters A lot - email lists, Twitter, Facebook, word of mouth, posters, interviews with online publications, radio interviews Enormous - print advertising, radio interviews, interviews with online publications, write-ups in local newspapers, use of multiple forms of paid advertising
Amount and type of planning required Minimal - identification of venue, promotion to community, sourcing AV gear such as projector Some - identification of venue, sourcing suitable AV gear, ensuring adequate presentations, undertaking media and promotion activities, registration, post event survey A lot - identification of venue, liaison with other computing groups, sourcing suitable AV gear, ensuring suitable presentations, undertaking media and promotion activities, team leadership activities Enormous - identification of multiple venues, liaison with multiple sponsors, suppliers and other stakeholders, massive AV operations, significant speaker liaison, significant media, promotion and marketing activities, significant team leadership activities
Risk planning required Minimal - ensuring health and safety of attendees, possibly needing to make sure that equipment is tested and tagged Some - ensuring health and safety of attendees, testing and tagging of equipment, may need security depending on venue A lot - health and safety of attendees, testing and tagging of equipment, security depending on venue, wet weather contingencies, managing incidents encountered dealing with members of the public - such as abuse or harrassment etc Enormous - health and safety, testing and tagging, AV contingencies, venue contingencies, accommodation contingencies, food risks, alcohol risks, safety, harassment and diversity of attendees


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