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Guidelines for Conference Planning

Have you volunteered to plan for a conference? Wondering how to go about it? Then read these guidelines and find your answers.
Manali Oak
Conference, a meeting of people to confer about a topic, is an opportunity for them to participate in discussions, exchange their views, and derive conclusions. Informative topics, or socially or economically important issues are often taken up for conferences.
A conference can also be in the form of a meeting to discuss business issues, make business decisions, make settlements, or invite questions from the masses and find answers to them. Only a well-planned conference can serve the purpose of facilitating the participants with a platform to voice their views.


Begin with planning for the conference plan. Prepare an outline before planning for the actual conference. The first step is to ask for permission of the organization that would be hosting it. Get to know the convenient dates and timings of the organization.
Discuss with the concerned authorities, the subject to be taken up for the conference. The authorities may like to brainstorm to come up with good ideas for the topic. Present your ideas and convince them the need and suitability of the topic chosen.
Once the topic is finalized, you need to prepare a list of people who would be participating. The planning will also involve the decision about who would be the speakers and who would chair the conference.
Select suitable candidates as speakers and as the chairperson. People with an expertise on the subject would be the most befitting to participate in the conference.
Along with the speakers and the conference topic, it is equally important to plan and schedule the time duration for which the conference should continue. According to the date and time fixed between you and the organization, plan for the timings.
Decide a suitable venue. Then comes logistics. Plan to equip the conference room with the required furniture. The furniture includes chairs, tables, the conference table, and the seating arrangement for the registrants.
Computers, a projector, network connections, the hardware and software for the computers, and the microphone system are some of the other equipment used. Depending on the scope, you may want to arrange some activities for the attendees.
Plan for the furniture that would be needed for this purpose. You can create a conference planning checklist to confirm that you have incorporated all the elements of the conference in your plan.
No plan can work well without the active participation of people. For the people to have an idea of the conference and feel interested to register for it, you should make an interesting announcement declaring it. If need be, you can develop a website announcing the conference.
The website content should give an elaborate description of the conference topic - the speakers, the date and time details, the venue, and the facilities that would be provided, and online registration details, if applicable. You can design flyers to declare the conference topic and the date, time, venue, and registration details.
Funds are always an important aspect of any and every plan. For the successful implementation of your plan, you need to arrange for funds.
Decide whether you would be serving snacks or an elaborate meal to the speakers. Decide whether you would be arranging for refreshments for the participants and the audience.
Take help of the organization that would be hosting the conference. It is important to decide on a registration fee. Budget well, so that you do not run out of resources on the actual day of the conference.