Testing, Scenario and Contingency Planning for Major Events

Major event organisers have to be prepared for any eventuality. Unexpected issues can occur at any time which can have serious repercussions for attendees as well as host countries and organisers.

As they are often one-time-only events, organisers have one chance to get it right. Preparation is key, which is why a great deal of time is spent in the planning process, testing for every scenario and ensuring staff are well trained.

‘Plan A’ is the ideal outcome for major events, but having just one plan isn’t advised — back-up procedures are always necessary as an added precaution. Scenario and contingency planning using the Iventis software means organisers can delve into every detail to avoid missing any elements that are easy to overlook.

Ensuring everyone involved in the event is fully prepared is essential. All plans are stored in the system and are easily accessible for the entire team. As a visual platform, it can be used to actively engage partners and stakeholders through training, test events and readiness exercises.

In this article, we take a more detailed look at use cases for scenario and contingency planning with Iventis software.

Realistic, interactive scenarios can be planned and tested with Iventis.

Health & Safety

Health & Safety is a top priority for any major event, and the team will need to plan for emergency scenarios, such as an evacuation of the site.

This process includes:

  • Designing evacuation routes
  • Preparing for road closures/traffic management
  • Ensuring emergency vehicle access routes/points
  • Preparing assembly points off-site for visitors and staff
  • Training staff in emergency procedures and protocols
  • Ensuring there is a clear, shared understand with relevant stakeholders and partners

As safety is a major concern, evacuation plans are usually a requirement for licensing an event.

Organisers use Iventis to plan the safest and most appropriate routes down to the last detail. Our software makes it easy to gain the full perspective needed for planning out an event space and the surrounding areas by integrating detailed CAD drawings with wider basemaps.

This level of detail is essential when planning an evacuation route, as it’s necessary to know the shortest possible routes to the nearest exits, how clear the path will be and where to place emergency signage and lighting.

Desktop Exercise
Emergency scenarios can be analysed, assessed and planned.

Calculations can be made to measure spaces and flow rates to ensure sufficient capacity is available to safely manage expected volumes. Variations may be necessary, such as when a certain exit is unavailable.

Iventis software works best because we focus on user experience. Tools can be used to test different scenarios quickly or in real-time if plans need to be adjusted or changed.

Transport

Transport can present one of the greatest risks for events with a heavy reliance on external operators and outside factors. Key participants need a safe, secure and timely route to the venue. Attendees, event workforce and operators will make their way to the venue in a variety of different transport modes, whether by private car, public transport, or active transport.

Organisers can work closely with external stakeholders, such as public transport operators, to develop contingency plans and scenarios

Event transport planners use Iventis to prepare for the potential situations that might arise during the event that could impact arrivals/departures to a venue or the external traffic network. By identifying the locations of possible traffic incidents or congestion with the Iventis platform, transport planners can build contingency routes and road closures that mitigate or divert from the issue, making sure delays are averted or at least kept to a minimum.

Organisers can work closely with external stakeholders, such as public transport operators, to develop contingency plans and scenarios in case of disruption to services.

Social Distancing

2020 and 2021 have been tough for the events industry, but as restrictions ease, more events are starting up again. However, even with face masks and vaccines, it’s predicted COVID-19 will never fully disappear. It is likely that COVID-19/Pandemic will remain firmly on risk registers for at least the next 10 years, and social distancing will still be a major factor for events.

Desktop Exercise
Capacity calculation and visualising tools can be used for social distancing planning.

Iventis offers easy-to-use tools to plan places and services in accordance with local guidelines for social distancing. With our 3D mapping software, it’s easier to gain a clearer picture of how much space is needed to accommodate a certain number of spectators.

Planners are also able to design contingency plans if social distancing guidelines change as the event draws nearer, whether social distance requirements are increased or decreased. Other mitigation measures, such as queuing systems, one-way flows, sanitising and cleaning can also be planned.

Readiness Exercises

Desktop Exercise
Desktop exercises are extremely valuable for event organisers, but planners sometimes revert to creative methods to bring them to live.

Readiness exercises are a great way for event organisers and their teams to practice how they would respond to an incident. Typical exercises include ‘desktop’ or ‘tabletop’ exercises, simulations or real world test events. Readiness exercises help to ensure:

  • Operational staff are familiar with plans and venues
  • Staff understand and have acted our their roles and responsibilities
  • Command, Control and Communication (C3) are tested
  • Staff are practiced in responding to emergency situations

When performing a regular desk-top exercise programme, there is very little immersion. Iventis is a highly visual platform that can bring practice sessions to life with detailed maps and visuals of the event location.

A timeline of operational activities can be created, allowing organisers to play through a day, or time period.

In turn, this helps stakeholders become more familiar with the event location and the planned level of response. In the event of an emergency, a highly detailed readiness exercise will provide teams with the knowledge they need to react fast, potentially saving lives.

Communication

When communication breaks down, it puts major events in serious jeopardy if an emergency arises — this goes for staff, participants and attendees.

Iventis is a highly visual platform that can bring practice sessions to life with detailed maps and visuals of the event location.

Iventis provides a visual method of planning every aspect of an event. Staff can explore the latest plans in their own time to gain a full understanding of an event. For example, organisers can use the platform to generate a detailed staffing plan that clearly outlines the team members responsible for managing and monitoring various areas of a venue.

By using Iventis, planners limit the opportunities for gaps in staffing plans and procedures. Should an issue arise, they can seamlessly identify a manager responsible for an area of concern to coordinate a response and messaging to attendees.

Effective Scenario and Contingency Planning with Iventis

Ensuring your major event runs smoothly is the main aim, and that can’t be done with only one plan in place. Iventis gives you the tools for the most effective scenario and contingency planning, so teams can be as well prepared as possible.

Our software provides a single, shared plan covering every aspect of an event. Being cloud based, the latest updates are easy to share across entire teams, so everyone can understand and fulfill their roles.

Being able to identify risks, develop alternative plans and test scenarios is critical. To fully understand how Iventis can help, make sure to book your free demo and see the full experience for yourself.

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