Contracting insufficient crew numbers and hiring untrained casual labour are common mistakes made by inexperienced festival organisers. So says Gallowglass Crewing MD Jonathon Sigsworth, in a feature on festival crewing published in Festival Insights magazine this month, advising on how to avoid last-minute operational crises.
Jon says that crewing is never going come top of the festival organiser's list of priorities, although as the larger events evolve they will routinely opt to source professional services. But this is largely the result of learning from mistakes. If you are one of the many organisers of small or first-time events, you may not even know what is legally required to ensure a safe, efficient build, nor have you yet discovered the heap of things that can go wrong when you cut corners on festival crewing.
With budgetary considerations front of mind, the temptation will always be to keep crew numbers to the absolute minimum. It's only when people fail to show up, previous jobs overrun and delay their arrival, or numbers are suddenly cut by on-site injuries that organisers find themselves having to manage a multitude of operational problems in a very short time.
And of course the plus point to working with crewing companies from the early planning stage, is that they'll know how to anticipate and prevent many of the snags that creep up unexpectedly during build phase. Organisers will be able to focus on producing a spectacular event and leave the operational aspects to the experts. Read Jon's full article on the perils of hiring a motley crew here