A Meeting Planners worksheet for event budgeting.

Probably the most important aspect of event and meeting management is successful budgeting. Meetings and events can have literally dozens of line items.

Some fixed. Some Variable. These cost come in over the course of weeks, sometimes months, making it event more challenging to review the profitability of your program. Add in retainer payments, sponsorships and registration revenue and you quickly provide a financial analysis that can sometimes be daunting.

Start with the basics, choose a simple accounting module or at a minimum a spreadsheet. Keep track of all your incoming revenue and expenses. There are many event registration software, like American Meetings, www.meetingsoft.com, which allow you to register your revenue and manage your expenses in one place. We highly recommend this for high volume programs. It will ensure a smooth transition from your program on-site to your reconciliation process.

If your event is a marketing or cost center type of program where you are attempting  not to go over a budgeted amount, this is a simpler type of program. Add revenue management and trying to meet a profit margin on a conference or event, and the accounting becomes much more difficult.

Use the following budget checklist to ensure you are making all of the right decisions as you go through the event budgeting process. Having this checklist will provide a guide as you enter the world of event accounting!  Click here for your copy of the budgeting checklist for meetings and events.

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