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Essential Training for People Working in the Events Industry.

Andy Robertson

A key to providing the best quality service in a safe environment in the events industry is the quality of the training given to staff. Whether they are contractors, working for a supplier company or an event volunteer what training and certification is the most important and relevant?          


Depending on the nature of a job function the training requirements could vary from 'nice to have' to essential certification. 

Live Event and Festival Volunteer Training.
For larger events and festivals, the events team will usually have someone responsible for managing and training the volunteers. In most cases this will be done in-house and involves training the volunteers on the processes and procedures of the event along with responsibilities for each assigned duty. In addition volunteers should get training on any escalation procedures for anything that they cannot handle.

The Health & Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981 require all employers to ensure employees receive immediate attention if injured at work. The First Aid at Work Level 2 and Level 3 NVQ is the most common first aid training given and usually consists of a one-day course that will enable volunteers to act as an emergency first aider at the event. Depending on the event organisers preference first aid training may be a requirement for all volunteers or a selected team who once qualified will be clearly identified to the whole team.

Event Contractors and Supplier Training and Certification.
Any responsible event organiser should ensure that employees of contractors are fully trained and certified for the jobs they are performing on site. 

This is particularly important as many contractors are involved with potentially dangerous tasks. For rigging contractors erecting lighting arrays or stage construction there must be a qualified safety harness and equipment inspector available. Training and certification for those involved with ladders and low-level staging should be conducted within the PUWER regulations and the Working at Height Regulations.

For contractors working with electricity the most important training is obtaining PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) Testing certification because the PAT testing law requires that all employers and even self-employed individuals must ensure that their portable electrical appliances are safe and are suitable and used for the purposes intended. These appliances should always be maintained properly and remain in good working order. Given that a music festival for example will rely solely on portable electrical equipment having a PAT Testing qualified contractor is vital. 

It's too easy for some event organisers to overlook some of these key requirements for contractors and they should ensure that on-site venue supervision is present from pre-event build up through to post event breakdown. This becomes most important where there is no specific legal requirement and available guidance should be followed. Event organisers should not rely on their public liability insurance to cover any shortcomings.

For any live event organiser planning their event using a software management platform like Festival Pro gives them all the functionality they need manage every aspect of their volunteer training and contractor logistics. The guys who are responsible for this software have been in the front line of event management for many years and the features are built from that experience and are performance artists themselves. The Festival Pro platform is easy to use and has comprehensive features with specific modules for managing artists, contractors, venues/stages, vendors, volunteers, sponsors guestlists and ticketing. 

Image by Rebelmimi from Pixabay

Andy Robertson
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