Events Management

 12 July 2012

Events managers organise every aspect of live events, including concerts and outdoor events including festivals. This includes all kinds of music from classical to pop.

Events management is a very popular and competitive career.
Events management is a very popular and competitive career.

What is the job like?

Events management can embrace many areas such as health and safety, site design, finance, logistics and planning, catering and marketing, to name just a few.

Large-scale events will involve many different people, specialising in different roles. If you are working on smaller events your job may encompass several areas. 

The work may include:

  • Project-managing events from concept to realisation and controlling budgets
  • Using commercial awareness to develop business objectives and ensure the financial success of the events
  • Selecting and managing a range of contractors including security, catering and sound and lighting
  • Researching and booking suitable venues and liaising with venue management
  • Marketing and publicity
  • Complying with health and safety legislation
  • Ensuring that everything runs smoothly during the event, including all the ‘load-in’ and ‘load-out ’of equipment.

How do I get into events management?

Events management is a very popular and competitive career. This is even more so in the live music sector. You need to be very energetic and willing to work hard as the hours often extend well beyond 9-5. Also important are excellent organisational skills and the ability to solve problems creatively. 

Events management is a very popular and competitive career.

This career will bring you into contact with many different people at all levels so a willingness to work in a team and the ability to get on with others is vital.

Events managers have to calmly deal with the unexpected – such as a sudden change in the weather at an outdoor event. You also need to be a good negotiator.

Aim to get as much experience as you can of organising events. There may be a music competition or concert that you could offer to help with. Music festivals such as Glastonbury also welcome volunteers, for those aged 18 or over.

Various charities such as Oxfam and Greenpeace often recruit volunteers at music festivals. First Aid qualifications are also an advantage. Evidence of a strong interest in music is expected.

People come into events management by many different routes. One good way of gaining relevant experience is by working as an events steward at live events. Other people (including graduates) start out in junior administrative roles, gain relevant experience and then progress from there.

Make sure you know how to use the main IT office packages including spreadsheets and databases. You might gain experience in another area of events management before moving into live music.

What training and qualifications do I need?

School subjects that are useful for careers in events management include English, maths, IT and business studies.

Relevant college and university courses for this career could include: 

  • BTEC Level 2 Diploma Business Studies
    Entry with 2 GCSE (A-D) passes
  • BTEC Level 3 Diploma Studies
    Entry with 4 GCSE (A-C) passes, including English and maths.
  • Degree in Event Management
    Some may provide direct experience of organising music events, so it is important to research courses carefully. The entry requirements for a degree course are a minimum of 2 A levels or equivalent, plus usually five GCSE (A-C) passes to include English and maths.

Apprenticeships could be a way into events management work at a junior/assistant level. Visit the creative apprenticeship website for vacancies. Opportunities in Facilities Management or Hospitality would also provide a useful training prior to moving into events management work later on.

Academic entry qualifications for apprenticeships can vary, although most employers will look for a good standard of English and Maths at GCSE as a minimum.

What can I earn?

A typical starting weekly wage for an intermediate apprentice outside London could be £104 per week. This could increase to around £170 per week or more with experience during the apprenticeship.

Junior administrative roles in events companies may be available, with a minimum starting salary of between £12,000 and £14,000. A graduate in events management could expect to earn around £16,000.

With experience your salary could rise to between £25,000 and £35,000. Much higher salaries up to around £80,000 are possible for the most senior jobs.

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