As an event manager, you’re responsible for the safety and security of all attendees and participants at your event. The best event security not only allows attendees to relax and enjoy, but it also minimizes property damage risk and provides important safety measures in the case of an emergency.
Security is more than just placing guards at the entry points. There are many different factors that are involved in a comprehensive security strategy.
Use the following best practices to create an event that runs smoothly and ensures the safety of everyone present.
1. Familiarize yourself with the location’s access points.
A venue is considered “porous” if it has multiple potential access points that aren’t official entrances, like windows that could be opened or an unmonitored staff door. Creating a diagram of the venue and marking those points will help the staff stop any unauthorized visitors. If the event is outside, using temporary fencing or barricades can also help.
2. Consider attendee risk.
Think about the potential audience for your event. Do you expect any protests? Will the media be present? A controversial speaker or attendee group will require more security because of the increased risk of possibly sensitive encounters. If your guests have their own personal security, you’ll want to coordinate with them as well.
Also consider non-human risks around your venue. Are you close to a busy road? Are there hazardous areas or animals surrounding the event? You’ll want to incorporate security measures, like signage or fencing, to reflect environmental risks.
3. Make your security measures visible.
The best security plans prevent threats from occurring at all. By making your staff and monitoring equipment clearly visible, you’ll help to deter potential troublemakers before they can ruin your event. Signage and badges are also great ways to visually emphasize your security.
Visible security not only reduces risk, but it also makes attendees feel safer. If people need help, they’ll know exactly where to go for aid.
4. Manage crowd size and location.
The bigger the crowd, the higher the risk that something unsafe may happen. Hire staff who have experience managing large crowds. Keep groups clear from emergency exits, and always monitor how many people are inside of a specific area. Never let the crowd exceed the maximum capacity of a location.
5. Create security checkpoints.
Entry checkpoints set up at a distance from the actual event are a smart way to stop unauthorized people from entering or causing a scene if they are turned away. Checkpoints are also key places to check bags, install metal detectors and confirm IDs against tickets.
6. Make your staff easy to identify.
It may seem like a good idea to conceal your security team in plain clothes, but in actuality this strategy can actually increase potential risks. Agitators or people looking to sneak in will feel more comfortable doing so if it doesn’t look like any security is around. Outfit your team in an easy-to-see uniform and include authorized badges. That way, attendees know who to ask for help, and the security team can more easily coordinate in case of an incident.
7. Use personalized event badges and IDs.
Custom ID badges or wristbands are an effective way to quickly identify who’s supposed to be at an event. They’re especially helpful when you have multiple types of attendees, like volunteers or VIPs, who need access to different areas of the event.
The Benefits of Events Badges
The nice thing about using event badges is that they can help support all of the different security steps outlined above. Badges can be printed with a wide range of information so that they fit your event’s exact needs. For example, if you’re managing a conference, badges with attendee pictures and networking information will help facilitate positive conversations among guests. If you’re running an outdoor festival or sporting event, badges that are color-coded based on access will make it easy for everyone to know who is allowed where.
And finally, a large-scale event like a conference would benefit from barcodes that make it easy for attendees to be scanned into authorized areas, keeping the checkpoints running smoothly and quickly. Lanyards are usually recommended for these types of events, since they make it easy for guests to display their badges for everyone to see.
The lanyards can be color-coordinated based on the event’s branding or for different attendee levels. You can also get them printed with the event’s name. Professional-looking badges make an entire event feel high-quality on top of promoting your safety procedures. Attendees can use the badges as souvenirs of their time.
If your attendees will be using the same badge over several days or the event is outside, consider adding clear badge protectors. These will keep the badges from tearing, fading or staining, making them as easy to read and use as they are when they are first handed out.
If you have an event where badges would get in the way, like a sports tournament, wristbands are a convenient alternative. They are weather-proof and can be used by scanners in the same way as traditional badges.
Make Your Event A Success With the Right Badge Partner
Online reviews and word-of-mouth recommendations will help you find the right vendor for your event. It’s also helpful to work with a company that prints badges directly instead of ones that outsource the printing to a third-party vendor; this way, you’ll save money and receive shorter turnaround times.
A well-run security program will help your event be enjoyable and safe for everyone involved. That’s why it’s so important to work with a company that’s experienced in printing badges at large volumes. Professionally printed badges look great, are durable and will help your attendees feel comfortable.