Event evaluation helps us to know if our events met the requirements that we had set before. It is like a way of assessing the goals and objectives that we had set before. We undertake event evaluation at the end of an event in order to understand if we have achieved what we wanted.
Evaluation of an even can also be used as a strategic planning tool that can help us to understanding the correct method or the correct procedure that we should use in order to achieve the desired goals and objectives. It is a fundamental process that helps us to discern the viability and sustainable of an event by assessing the best process that can be used to take us where we want to be.
The evaluation of an event should take a holistic approach. In this regard, it should not be leaned on one side alone but it should be aimed at looking at all corners of the event. Evaluating an event as a whole is important as it helps us to understand it in all its dimensions. If an evaluation is carried on one side alone, there may be a probability of constrain from other areas that were not evaluated before which may be a possible failure of the event.
By taking a holistic approach we mean that we have to focus on all areas. Most evaluation of an event tends to lean on the economic viability of an event and gives little attention to the areas of the event. Therefore we have to consider dimensions like the social aspect of he event, the environment aspect of the event, if it is a business event we have to asses the business leveraging, and also we have to evaluate the branding of the event and the impact that it has created. It is also very important to evaluate an event regularly in the sense that it has to be consistent throughout the whole process of its implementation. This means that we have to evaluate an event right from the start of the event, when it is being implemented and after it is implemented. There must also be a common base under which an event will be evaluation on. In this regard, there has to be a kind of a bench mark for evaluation which can be based on the exiting data or based on the expectations from the event. (Henderson 2002, P. 19)
The main aim of evaluation of an event is to understand the whole process, asses its impact or the constrains that are likely to be encountered on the way and therefore come up with a proper mechanism that can be used in the future or that can be used to carry out the specific event.
As we have said an even has to be evaluated continuously throughout its planning and implementation. This is usually an important approach as it helps those who are undertaking the event to make the necessary changes in the process before the event comes to an advanced stage or when it is too late to implement a change on the process. Let us look at the procedure that can be used to evaluate an event.
Pre-event evaluation is the process of looking into detail of the impending event. In this regard it involves assessing the ground for the implementation of the event in order to look at the viability of the event. Pre-event evaluation is important as it provides the guidelines that will help an event manager to judge whether the event is useful and if it will meet the expectations of the organizers.
Pre-event evaluation involves a feasibility study that tends to look at the way in which the event will be implemented.