Inner Western Sydney Local Council
The Client's Requirements
Following the $22 million refurbishment of the Town Hall into a multipurpose facility, this inner Western Sydney local council sought to establish a new venue brand in the local and wider community. The goal was to enhance community engagement while reducing their in-house operational costs and developing a viable and sustainable commercial return from venue operations. To achieve all of this, they needed to outsource to a dedicated venue management and catering company capable of operating a performance arts theatre, multiple function rooms and a retail café/ bar outlet.
The $22 million refurbishment of the Town Hall resulted in a multi-purpose venue that included a library, a 300-seat performance theatre, function rooms and a retail cafe.
The challenges were to now ensure the maximum utilisation of the new facilities and:
Establish a new venue brand.
Program the venue to suit a wide range of requirements within the community, local businesses and private events.
Ensure Occupational Health and Safety and operational compliance for a new public assembly venue.
To achieve the goals of the council, a wide array of solutions were provided, such as:
Expert Management and Consulting
Providing new and refurbished venue opening expertise.
Ensuring the venue’s operational readiness for the opening and launch.
Advice and consultation regarding the function design of the venue and the hospitality service concepts.
The set-up of all legal documentation, including venue hire and terms and conditions.
The creation of a customer service charter and plan to ensure customer satisfaction, including the implementation of a customer feedback system.
The creation of all venue operational and compliance manuals, documents and checklists.
Providing venue hire clients with high-level event management expertise in the execution of their event, conference or performance.
Developing relationships with venue stakeholders, including the Council Executive branch, local Councillors and Mayor, past venue hirers, local community groups and local businesses.
Ensuring diversity of venue hire use especially amongst local ethnic groups.
The maximisation of sales and return on investment through the establishment of an efficient sales process and system.
Provision of a financial management system that provided tax compliant quotes and invoices to clients, venue hire terms and conditions hire documents, collected revenues and provided a mechanism to engage and pay suppliers for venue operation.
Ensuring business/financial sustainability and continuation for the Council to assume management at the conclusion of the four-year contract.
Ensuring - through our already existing relationships - venue hirers such as national touring companies, comedians and theatre companies utilised the venue.
The set-up and implementation of the venue booking and documentation software systems.
The provision of a professional, dedicated team of on-site personnel, including Venue Manager, Event Sales and Administration Coordinator, Cafe Manager and a casual pool of staff for catering and beverage service, ushering, fire wardens and audio-visual production.
Catering and Bar Services
The set-up of retail café and bar menus (including full menu design, costings, supplier provision), supplier management, operational processes and procedures, point of sale cash registers and merchant facilities.
Supplying quality catering for private and business events and conferences, while ensuring the provision of a dedicated range of diverse ethnic menus.
The design and creation of all marketing collateral, including the logo, brochures, business cards, website (including ongoing maintenance and content creation) and social media implementation.
“Throughout the duration of the contract, the Canterbury- Bankstown Council found VMS to be highly professional, responsive to the Council, community and business requirements and dedicated to the success of the venue.
During the contract period, VMS either met or surpassed the key performance measurement requirements. Venue utilisation, community engagement and visitation has risen year on year along with revenues from venue hire operations, catering and café operations.
VMS provided an invaluable service to Council in the setup of operational procedures for the venue including manuals and staff training. VMS actively engaged the community through a series of collaborations and events designed to maximise community utilisation of the venue and were active sponsors of community events.
The Team at Canterbury- Bankstown Council, thank VMS for all their work and dedication in developing and managing a well utilised and financially sustainable venue”.
Katherine Forman- Manager Leisure and Recreation