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Events Jobs in Exhibition Centres

Introduction to events jobs in exhibition centres
Exhibition centres are dotted about all over the United Kingdom, usually in the nation’s bigger cities but they are also to be found in large towns, too. This is great for students and young people who are looking to do events jobs because it means there is a chance of casual work in exhibition centres close to where you live or where you are staying.

When it comes to events jobs in exhibition centres, the type of events jobs you could be doing is massively varied just because exhibition centres are so multi-functional. They might be hosting one massive event over a period of time or they can play host to numerous events all at the same time because they are such adaptable spaces. Some exhibition centres are huge and cover thousands of square metres, housing anything from intimate business meeting rooms to conference centres to massive spaces that can hold parties, shows, sports and music events. As well as all this, there are usually retail catering outlets, other retail outlets that promote events and the exhibition centre, bars, auditoriums and some also have hotels attached to them.

From all of this, you are no doubt getting an idea that exhibition centres need lots of staff to keep things running smoothly both on a full time basis and on a casual basis. This is perfect for students and young people looking to work flexible hours. Exhibition centres are committed to running every event, however big or small it may be, to an exceptionally high standard and they need staff, even those doing entry level jobs, to contribute towards that commitment so that everyone enjoys the event. This means the exhibition centre can continue to attract new events and even host some of the United Kingdom’s top events. More events euqals more events jobs for people like you.

Some of the established major exhibition centres around the United Kingdom that you may be familiar with are Manchester Central (formerly GMEX), London’s Earls Court and the NEC (National Exhibition Centre) in Birmingham. Of course, there are many more around the United Kingdom but if you know these places and the types of events that take place there, then you can see that events jobs in exhibition centres, whichever types of events jobs they are, could be lots of fun. Yes, it’s going to be hard work, too, but you will be meeting new people, you will possibly play a part in making some of the biggest events in the country run smoothly, and you will be earning money at the same time.

Events jobs in exhibition centres - what type of events jobs could I be doing?
Okay, so if you are a student, young school leaver or you are looking for gap year jobs and you like the idea of being a part of events in exhibition centres, what types of events jobs could you find yourself doing? Well the good news is, jobs in events lend themselves very well to those of you looking for entry level jobs. A lack of previous work experience is not necessarily going to stop you from getting the events jobs you really want. As long as you can demonstrate your commitment and enthusiasm and you are willing to work flexible hours - sometimes long hours throughout a single shift - then events jobs in exhibition centres could be your gateway into the world of work and possibly a future career via apprenticeships, internships and graduate jobs.

Because exhibition centres have a commitment to providing first class customer service in all roles - directly or indirectly - many entry level jobs will involve role specific training, especially where health and safety is concerned. For catering jobs, for example, this might be in food hygiene, while facilities management jobs and steward might be concerned with placement of tables and chairs or the number of people allowed in a particular area.

Types of events jobs in exhibition centres

Retail jobs in events
Box office team - Selling tickets, programmes and dealing with advance bookings by phone and online. If you enjoy dealing with cash, credit cards and customers, box office jobs could be ideal events jobs for you.
Retail and merchandising - So many different events take place in exhibition centres and the sale of products related to those events is an important part of the business. Again, with these types of events jobs, you will be dealing with cash and credit cards and also making sure goods are restocked.

Catering and hospitality jobs in events
Catering assistant jobs in events at exhibition centres can take on many guises, depending on your experience and preferences.
  • Barista events jobs - Preparing and serving coffees and other beverages to guests, catering jobs of this type also need you to keep your serving area clean and tidy.
  • Waiter and waitressing jobs - Events catering jobs at exhibition centres such as this can be anything from serving simple snacks and bottled water, to covering a business lunch for 40 people, a black tie silver service dinner for 100 people, a banquet for 300 people, right up to a buffet or canapes for 4,000 people. Catering assistant jobs at events in exhibition centres can also require you to set tables, take orders and serve both hot and cold food. The types of catering jobs you do depends completely on the type of event you are covering and it can be waiting on tables or handling cash from self-service foods.
  • Bar jobs - Champagne receptions, wine and cocktail bars, a regular bar serving pints of beer; bar jobs in events at exhibition centres can throw up lots of variety. Bar work in exhibition centres can be at busy bars, serving thousands of people at a major event or it can be a more intimate function.
  • Kitchen assistant - Again catering jobs in events as a kitchen assistant in exhibition centres can offer so much variety. It might be preparing a casual buffet for a huge company party to helping plate up restaurant food ordered on an a la carte basis. Other retail catering units in exhibition centres could mean catering jobs serving counter food such as hot dogs, burgers and fries.
  • Kitchen porter or Back of house assistant - As you can probably imagine, because of the diverse range of events that take place in exhibition centres and because of the their sheer size, events jobs in catering can also be behind the scenes. There is a lot to be done here. Events jobs such as kitchen porter requires you to be strong and physically fit because exhibition centres need to have plates, cutlery and food stuffs transported between different areas of the centre. Naturally, this involves a lot of lifting and moving around. Some catering assistant jobs as a kitchen porter will also require you to assist with clearing work surfaces and washing up while the event is taking place.
  • Kitchen porter or Back of house assistant - As you can probably imagine, because of the diverse range of events that take place in exhibition centres and because of the their sheer size, events jobs in catering can also be behind the scenes. There is a lot to be done here. Events jobs such as kitchen porter requires you to be strong and physically fit because exhibition centres need to have plates, cutlery and food stuffs transported between different areas of the centre. Naturally, this involves a lot of lifting and moving around. Some catering assistant jobs as a kitchen porter will also require you to assist with clearing work surfaces and washing up while the event is taking place.
  • Host / hostess / concierge events jobs - If you enjoy meeting people and dealing with their requirements, casual catering and hospitality jobs in events could be as a host or hostess. This could be at aftershow parties for awards ceremonies, greeting people with a smile as they arrive to events and just making sure everyone in the room is happy and their requirements are being met, whatever the event is. At large exhibition centres, this could be a huge international event where you could be meeting and dealing with famous people.
Events assistant jobs such as catering jobs vary greatly, depending on the type and size of event you are covering. Conference and banqueting jobs might suit you, or if you are interested in working for staffing agencies which cover a whole range of events in your area, E4S have a dedicated page. This page covers duties that might be involved and a list of companies who advertise events catering jobs with E4S. Click here to find out more about events catering jobs .

Facilities Management Jobs Exhibition centres make use of facilities management teams to generally make sure the rooms and facilities are clean and functioning. For students looking for events jobs in facilities management in exhibition centres, entry level jobs are likely to arise in:
  • Cleaning jobs - Facilities management jobs such as cleaning jobs at exhibition centres can be anything from late night after party clean ups to housekeeping roles in hotels. Other cleaning jobs might be within auditoriums and rooms where big music gigs are taking place for instance. Cleaning jobs in events like this mean you could get to see some of the United Kingdom’s hottest events while earning money at the same time.
  • Maintenance jobs - Facilities management jobs in events at exhibition centres can also be in maintenance jobs. Entry level jobs that might be suitable for students and young people could be garden and grounds maintenance for example and also setting up meeting rooms for conferences or training events.
Facilities management jobs such as cleaning jobs and maintenance jobs can be a good way for students and young people to earn money doing events jobs. If you would like more detailed information about the duties involved in this type of work then head on over to the E4S dedicated page on facilities management jobs and cleaning jobs .

Event security jobs at exhibition centres
Because exhibition centres, especially the larger ones, often host major events such as sports events or rock concerts, for example, event security jobs could also be available to students and young people looking for events jobs. When doing event steward jobs at exhibition centres, duties can include traffic marshalling, crowd control, first aid and also checking entry tickets.

There are many other entry level jobs that might suit school leavers and students who want to do event steward jobs. For more information about requirements, necessary qualifications (where applicable) and also a list of companies that advertise event security jobs with E4S, take a look at our dedicated page on event security jobs.

I like the idea of events jobs in exhibition centres. Where could I find them?
Because exhibition centres are so versatile and host a whole variety of different events, there are so many events jobs you could do. We’ve listed just a few ideas below. If you are staying or living close to an exhibition centre and you are particularly interested in these types of events jobs over other venues, it might be worth popping in to see them as some exhibition centres do their own recruitment for casual, entry level jobs.

If you would like variety in your events jobs, however, where you could be working at a variety of the United Kingdom’s top venues, including exhibition centres, the list below could be helpful.
  • Jam Staffing - For students and young people looking for events catering assistant jobs in London and surrounding areas, Jam staffing provide highly trained staff for VIP parties and award ceremonies. Jam Staffing might be good for students looking for entry level jobs in catering and hospitality because the company provide full training so you are confident and fully equipped for working at important events. Jam Staffing specialise in catering and hosting.
  • TempTribe - Again, for students looking for catering assistant jobs in London and around, TempTribe could be worth looking at. They could have events jobs at exhibition centres as they fill catering jobs for sporting and music events, VIP events, promotional exhibitions, banquets and conferences. All of these are the types of events that could take place in exhibition centres.
  • Resource Network - Resource Network are a part of the Compass Group and they do the recruitment for the company. The good news for students and young people looking for events jobs - especially entry level jobs such as catering assistant jobs, cleaning jobs and facilities management jobs - is the Compass Group provide staff to thousands of venues all over the United Kingdom. So wherever you are based there could be events jobs with the Compass Group both in exhibition centres and other venues. The Compass Group provide staff for Earl’s Court, for example.
  • RE Hospitality - Re Hospitality provide VIP catering services for many types of events; events jobs with this company could be at some of the UK’s most well known events. As they also provide staff for catering jobs at award ceremonies, premieres and launches, they could have positions available to cover events taking place in exhibition centres.
  • Combined Services Provider - Combined Services Provider provide security for events all over the United Kingdom so event security jobs such as steward jobs could be available with this company at exhibition centres. And if it’s cleaning jobs or facilities management jobs you would like to do, Combined Services Provider also provide staff for these types of jobs, too.
What are the types of exhibitions and events that take place in exhibition centres?
Well, the list is almost endless when it comes to events in exhibition centres. Their whole design is tailored so that they can be versatile and host all different types of events and gatherings. That’s why events jobs in exhibition centres can be so much fun. Yes, the hours can be long and demanding but, here are just a few of the events you could be working at - and witnessing at the same time - by doing events jobs.
  • Consumer exhibitions such as property exhibitions and travel fares
  • Broad and specialist trade exhibitions
  • Large conferences
  • Shows and performances
  • Music concerts
  • University fares organised UCAS, for example
  • Recruitment fares
  • Wedding shows, professional beauty shows and fashion shows
  • Small meetings
  • National and international sports events such as boxing, wrestling or gymnastics
  • Ice skating
  • Massive staff parties for large corporate companies
  • Networking events for people working within the same sector
What type of people do events jobs in exhibition centres?
Events jobs in exhibition centres, whatever type of jobs they are, are perfectly suited to students and young people because many of them are entry level jobs. Let’s have a look at some of the qualities exhibition centres and staffing agencies look for when advertising for casual staff to do events jobs.
  • Flexible hours - when doing events jobs at exhibition centres or elsewhere, shifts will inevitably vary from week to week so to events jobs, you need to be willing to work flexible hours. This can be ideal for students who don’t want jobs to interfere with studies. The beauty of some staffing agencies is that you can even declare yourself available or unavailable for events jobs over a given week so, if you’re particularly tied up with studies sometime, you can request not to work any hours in your events jobs. When you are working, you have more chance of events jobs if you are willing to work early mornings and late nights on occasion.
  • Be well groomed and well presented - In events jobs, even if it’s cleaning jobs, you are the face of the events and you are representing the exhibition centre. Particularly in roles where you are dealing directly with the public, you need to look the part.
  • Confident, friendly and approachable - Again, in any role where you are the face of the event and working with the public, events jobs in exhibition centres will suit those who are both confident and friendly and also polite when dealing with queries or serving people. Different events will require different levels of formality and it is important to know how to deal with event attendees in the appropriate manner. Events jobs in exhibition centres are all about providing an excellent customer experience.
  • Be passionate about events - As we said above, events jobs can be long hours and very demanding. As you could be working at some of the United Kingdom’s top events, you need to be passionate about your work and about being the face of the exhibition centre.
  • Have knowledge of the exhibition centre - Outside your immediate role in events jobs, it is beneficial for you to have knowledge of the exhibition centre. Familiarise yourself with where retail outlets are, toilets and car parks. Whatever events jobs you are doing, it is likely you will get questions from guests which you might think are nothing to do with your role. This is part of the provision of excellent customer service.
  • Be able to work as part of a team and under your own initiative, too- Events jobs mean you need to be able to communicate with other staff members so that you can work as a team to make the event run smoothly. As well as working as part of a team, there are going to be times when you need to make decisions and act under your own initiative to get jobs done.
Will events jobs in exhibition centres look good on my CV
That’s a yes! Whether it’s facilities management jobs, events catering jobs or event steward jobs, working in exhibition centres will look good on your CV for a number of reasons. Transferrable skills you can demonstrate to future employers are:
  • Able to work as part of a team
  • Able to work under pressure
  • Able to adapt to different situations - The variety of events and people attending those events at exhibition centres will mean your events jobs will make you adaptable to different environments. For example, one day, you could be doing conference and banqueting jobs for a 50 people and the day after, you could be waiting on tables at a major awards ceremony attended by thousands.
  • Able to meet tight deadlines
  • Events jobs at exhibition centres will also help you to develop excellent customer service skills.
Can exhibition centre events jobs lead on to other things?
Because of the transferrable skills you will develop as part of your events jobs working in exhibition centres, you will be well equipped to move onto other things in the world of work, whether that’s as graduate job or apprenticeships. Sometimes, student jobs and part time jobs can lead directly onto a career in that industry. If you would like to develop a career in events, particularly in exhibition centres, there are many possibilities.
  • Events coordinator jobs and events management jobs - If you love the buzz of being part of events and think you can be good organiser and leader of people, events coordinator jobs and events management jobs could be something to consider as you gain more experience.
  • Branding and IT support - Exhibition centres often offer services for companies wanting to run events in the centre. If you have a background in branding or IT, you could do this type of work in events to make the event more successful for the company.
  • Catering management - If you have a background in catering or your events catering jobs have awoken an interest in this type of work, then exhibition centres could help you move into catering management roles and supervisory roles. Chefs, for instance, often work with people running events to create bespoke menus especially for the event.
  • Head office jobs - And of course, events jobs at exhibition centres can lead on to so many other career. Exhibition centres also have marketing departments, HR departments and finance, amongst others.
As you can see, events jobs in exhibition centres can suit lots of young people from a variety of backgrounds. If you think you could really shine in these types of jobs why not see what’s on offer and start applying for events jobs right now.

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