Event Budgeting Checklist [PDF & Excel]

If you are working with a group that has produced meetings and events in the past, it is probable that a good financial history will be available to serve as a checklist when initiating the budget process.  But if this is a first time event, listing all the expense items and potential revenues will be more difficult and time consuming.  Refer to the sample checklists available to you here along with the sample budgets and you will be off to a good start. 

Be thorough.  Meeting your financial goals will be one of the most critical to the success of the event and the organization that is hosting it.  You will need help.  Delegate responsibilities to other team members or volunteers to get quotes from the various vendors and service providers that will be needed to produce the event and to help develop a budget strategy. 

An example of how to divide responsibilities

 Major Task Budget for Networking Reception & Program Assigned to
 Sub-Tasks Venue and vendor quotes Team A
 Food and beverage menus Team B
 Marketing expense Team C
 Sponsorship Team D
 Registration and ticket sales Team E

Follow-up with weekly budget reviews – 
Regardless of how much or how little advance notice you have been given to plan the budget for an upcoming meeting or function of any type, getting the correct information you need about expenses and potential revenues on a timely basis is critical.  Review the status with your team on a weekly or even daily basis until all items on your checklist relevant to the budget have been received and incorporated into the budget.  A budget timeline goes hand-in-hand with your checklist and will be helpful in keeping you on track and on time.  Schedule a brainstorming session to make adjustments in the program to cut expense or generate revenue as needed. 

The checklist and timeline samples provided by Planning Helper are incomplete and meant for use as guidelines to help you create checklists of your own with content that applies to the unique needs of your meeting, event or function. 

Budget Checklist.PDF
Budget Checklist.DOC

About the Author

Susan has managed high-profile events for IBM, GE, and other Fortune 500 companies. She has organized fundraisers, large festivals, and promotional events. Now, she is a blogger and speaks about event planning topics

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