Organising a Tech Conference – 12. Preparing the presentation rooms

Post 12 of 15

With 24 hours to go we prepared all of the presentations rooms ready for action. In this post, I share the steps we took to ensure we got 100% satisfaction from our presenters.


Presenters were asked from the very beginning if they had any specific requirements for their presentations, using the presentation proposal form. Few presenters had special requests, but we logged those for later use.


Stationary packs

Every presentation room was kitted out with the following:

  • Whiteboard + pack of markers
  • Paper flipchart + pack of markers
  • Packs of post-it notes for delegates
  • Felt-tips for delegates
  • Pencils for delegates

A pen and notebook was made available by a sponsor in the delegate bags. We also ensured there were enough water bottles for each presenter.



Every presentation room was kitted out with the following:

  • Beamer
  • Interactive whiteboard with built-in speakers
  • A solution to use Airplay enabled devices (either Apple TV or iMac with Reflector)
  • Connectivity for the most common laptop configurations (DisplayPort, HDMI, Thunderbolt, VGA, USB)

As a backup plan we had fully charged laptops in every presentation room, which could be accessed via guest accounts.


Tech first-aid kits

Every presentation room had a tech first-aid kit, which contained the following:

  • Spare leads to connect to beamer (inlcuding VGA->DisplayPort/Thunderbolt, VGA->HDMI, Thunderbolt->HDMI)
  • Spare laptop
  • Spare charger
  • Camera
  • SD cards
  • External Hard drive
  • Ethernet lead
  • USB -> Ethernet (e.g. MacBook Air to connect to LAN)

These boxes came in very handy a few times.


Student helpers

We assigned one student helper to each presentation room. They were in charge of video recording each event, cleaning up after each presentation, setting up chairs, ensuring water was available to speakers, helped setting up presenter laptops, reporting bigger issues to organisers, etc.


Furniture setup

Some of the sessions took place in primary school rooms, which contained furniture not suitable for adults. The process of swapping tables and chairs was relatively time consuming. The student helpers did  a great job of dealing with this.


In the next post, I will talk about the actual conference weekend and how we solved problems and issues we had not foreseen during the planning stages.

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  1. June 3, 2015

    […] Preparing the presentation rooms […]

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Organising a Tech Conference – 11. Preparing the venue

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