Defining Roles and Responsibilities

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Defining roles

The success of your sporting event relies largely on how well your team organises the event, both before the event, on the day and post event.

Most events are too large for just a few people to run; you will need a team to co-ordinate activities on the day and ensure the events run on time.

Briefing meetings should start in the months preceding the event, delegating across the team. There are many aspects of an event that organisers will need to take responsibility for.

Who is responsible for event planning?

Here are some common considerations for your sporting event:

Health & Safety

As part of keeping your attendees safe, it is vital to conduct a risk assessment to help make sure you have thought things through systematically. This is a key requirement of any insurer.

First Aid and Event Medical Cover

Somebody needs to be responsible for first aid on the day of your event. For larger events, you could ask a first aid organisation to provide event medical cover at your event. Ensure there is a visible first aid point and first aiders present throughout the event.


Help attendees by giving them transport information and also parking information. On the day, attendees may need help being led to a space in the car park. Attendees will find a space quicker and may be less agitated.


Cater to disabled people by finding a venue that’s wheelchair accessible and provide a British Sign Language interpreter. Provide information prior to the event about accessibility, or invite people to contact you beforehand so you can cater to their needs.

Children's Activities

If you have children’s activities, be clear whether you are providing supervision or whether parents need to supervise their own children.


If photographing or filming your event, create information signs so attendees know they might be photographed. You should also gain parental consent before photographing children.


Take out public liability insurance to protect your sporting event attendees as well as yourselves.
It is also possible to insure against possible cancellation of the event, adverse weather cover, equipment cover and also Employers Liability to cover employees or volunteers at your event.


To help increase the number of attendees, the event needs to be promoted. This can be done online and offline, with flyers and press releases in local and national publications.

Co-ordinating Events

On the day there may be more than one sporting event running. Who will be in charge of making sure these events are set up and will start on time?


Signs will help guide attendees on the day. These can be to highlight a number of things, such as the car park, event registration, toilets, first aid and where attendees should go to view events.

Pre-Registration and Registration

Somebody will need to manage who’s competing in events, which heat and how many people in an event. It is also beneficial to give atheletes competing in events an identification, such as a number to pin on their top, making it easier for judges to identify that athlete.


Staff responsibilities should be confirmed before the event, so on the day everyone knows where they should be and what they should be doing.

How will you manage the team?

Depending on the scale of the event and urgency of things, phone calls, group IM chats or walkie talkies can be used to communicate with your team. Several apps turn phones into walkie talkies, so if you don’t have walkie talkies already, you don’t need to invest.

Top Tip

If you only have a few members of staff at the event, enlist extra help by recruiting volunteers. Volunteers will get free entry to the event and also gain experience at working at events.

Did You Know?

  • Event team sizes are usually small, with 25% of solo event organisers and 37% working in groups of 2-3.
  • 19% of organisers were expecting to spend more on staffing at their events next year. 48% of all organisers looking to hire are seeking marketing and communications staff.
  • Professional event organisers spent the most on their event staffing, followed by SMEs. Charities had the smallest budget (no doubt due to their ability to attract large numbers of volunteers to help out).