Signature Strategies: Hiring Vendors for Your Wedding Day
Allie and I know that planning a wedding is a BIG DEAL and if there is one thing that we have learned from working in this industry it is that; the key to success is hiring the right team of vendors. We also know that choosing the right vendors can be difficult and sometimes misleading. As a bride or groom, you always should know what you are getting before you sign the contract.
Luckily, in this post we are going to share three helpful tips to ensure that you get what you need and want when you are choosing vendors for your big day.
DO YOUR RESEARCH
Don’t get duped by a catering company that does little planning on the side but advertises that they are a full-service wedding planner, in addition to creating your menu. Honestly, it is highly unlikely that a caterer, baker, DJ or florist offers true, full-service wedding coordination. Yes, these types of vendors are experts in their specific fields and have many connections within the wedding industry, but don’t be fooled, this does not make them a full-service wedding coordinator.
Who will create detailed layouts with actual room specs in mind, coordinate your table décor, and make sure that your wedding party lines up correctly before you all head down the aisle? We can assure you that it won’t be the vendor making your dinner or arranging your flowers.
By doing your research you are ensuring that you are knowledgeable of what specific vendors offer as their true product or service. If it is florals, for example, they are not worried about helping you find the perfect photographer or making sure that all vendors are aware of the timeline for the day. They are busy unloading and arranging the magnificent bouquets and delivering them (as they should be).
EVENT PLANNER AND VENUE COORDINATORS: KNOW THE DIFFERENCE
Venue coordinators are NOT wedding planners (which is totally fine, but not if you think they are going to plan your wedding). So let us explain the difference between the two and why you should care.
Event Planners: We love logistics and have a complete roster of venues and vendors that we can recommend on the spot. We manage proper delegation of the budget, review contracts while looking for red flags, and answer important client questions.
We will gather information about the venue to make sure that all rules and regulations of the venue are respected by all parties involved who are utilizing the space. We have familiarized ourselves with the special logistics of a venue to develop a layout the accommodates the size of the event.
We create timelines, plan rehearsals, and make sure to communicate all expectations, important dates and times, and other information to the entire vendor team so that load in, set up, execution, and tear down all go according to plan.
Venue Coordinators: Venue coordinators work only at event venues. They do not manage any details outside of their contracted venue. Their responsibility is to look out for the best interest of the venue, not the event. A venue coordinator is very helpful, as they will deal with aspects pertaining to the venue such as set up of the space, setting start and end times, and communicating the rules and regulations covered in the contract pertaining to the space you have rented. They will manage details regarding the items the venue might provide such as tables and chairs.
The venue coordinator is absent for most of the planning process. Their job is not to help you hire the right vendors (although they may provide you with a list of preferred vendors). It is not their responsibility to put out any fires that arise during the course of your wedding day, such your cake not showing up.
ASK FOR REFERENCES
As a consumer paying for services it is your right to ask for references, do not forget that! What better way to know if the person or company you are considering hiring is a great fit? References can disclose to you what type of services the vendor truly offered and if they received the services they had expected to from the vendor. Past couples can share with you whether they were satisfied or disappointed with the services provided. And most importantly, references can reveal if the vendor truly executed event planning services or if they were more of a cater or florist who helped with a few outside logistics.