Whether to have a dedicated wedding coordinator or not still remains a hot topic each year, it’s still one of the most popular searched wedding topics and because it fits nicely with what we’re doing next year. So I thought to pre-empt things and provide you with my thoughts on whether you should have a dedicated wedding coordinator on your wedding day.
There is a mystique surrounding “what a wedding coordinator does” and the responsibilities of a wedding coordinator, even some industry people are confused with what the role entails. I wont’t go into depth just quite yet because that deserves an entire blog article. I will however break down, albeit briefly, what a wedding coordinator should do:
Very much a simplistic view of what a wedding coordinator is so I’ll have to sincerely apologise to all the professional wedding coordinators out there for doing so, I mean no disrespect of your trade and the hours of work and labour-of-love that goes into perfecting the day.
Most often this would be the case and there’s a level of success, after all who best to know what you need most and for you to trust than someone you know well? But what happens when something goes wrong right before the wedding and it puts everything out of whack? Not to mention the endless paperwork and work forms that venues have been requiring of all wedding vendors that work in their reception venue – making sure your vendors submit them (correctly) is in itself a painful exercise of paperwork.
Having a super organised coordinator to work through these pitfalls ensures you a free from tracking the paperwork and details needed before your day, and you’ll have a seasoned wedding coordinator that makes sure the reception part of the evening has as little hiccups as possible.
Whilst they truly provide a wonderful experience, well there are some exceptions, and are every bit experienced at running the floor and evening; their focus is to ensure the reception team, front-of-house and back-of-house staff work. Devil’s in the detail. Whilst they are in constant contact with all the moving pieces to ensure service and food delivery is as best as they can be, they’re not entirely focused on your needs or even your guests at the most intimate level.
I’m not talking about having your very own handmaiden or a butler, even though they’ll perform some of those duties, but you’ll have someone that is literally a hawk soaring over everything with the eye for detail. You know for when things aren’t happening the way they should, or when your Master of Ceremonies is otherwise indisposed and things need to move along, and even re-jig the night’s reception itinerary because service has been delayed or you’re waiting for the final group of guests to arrive.
This real world situation, though is extreme and probably rarely happens, is indicative that some things do go amiss on the wedding day and having a true professional around is the extra layer of help, experience and peace of mind that is well worth the investment.
Issues come up more often than most couples, or even guests, know and it’s usually handled very professionally but there’ll be instances that swift action is required rather than in-action. Case in point where a recent wedding venue, and I won’t name names here, had completely mucked up the seating table allocation and table numbers; their floor manager was caught off guard by the mistake but did nothing of it except ushering guests in a free-for-all. Guests ended up sitting where ever they wanted, family and VIP tables were on opposite ends rather than the standard of being up front. Of course by the time the bride and groom were informed it was a schamoozle! Long story short, I’m told guests were suggested to vacate their DIY seats and ushered to the foyer whilst venue waiter staff re-set everything. Suffice to say, delays delays and certainly a madness followed.
Put aside the venue coordinator and management mistake, had the bride and groom, or even the venue, had an experienced wedding coordinator, he/she would’ve gone through their final checklist to ensure all the settings were correct. Or even made the call to hold the guests in the foyer and extended service and canapés to ensure they were unaware and comfortable.