Event planners are experts at coordinating all aspects of special events, including professional meetings, weddings, and educational conferences, to ensure that they run smoothly.
Event planners are typically responsible for meeting with clients, planning the scope of the special event, soliciting bids from service providers, collaborating with clients to choose the location, evaluating places with clients’ requirements in mind, coordinating details with on-site staff, monitoring event activities for client satisfaction, and reviewing event bills for payment.
How much does an event planner make? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics records from May 2012, the 70,480 event planners employed throughout the United States earn an annual average event planner salary of $49,830, which is equivalent to a mean hourly wage of $23.96.
The bottom ten percent of event planners earn $26,560 or less, while the top ten percent of within this occupation bring home a mean salary of $79,280+ each year. Event planners employed at museums or other historical institutions make less than average at $45,400, but those that work for professional and political organizations make $55,250 annually. The top-paying state for the field is by far the District of Columbia, where event planners can expect to earn an average annual salary of $67,120.
The majority of event planners, around 13 percent, are employed by business, labor, professional, and political organizations. Others can find employment at hotels and motels, trade show organization, colleges and universities, convention centers, museums and other historical organizations, and performing arts centers.
Within this fast-paced career, event planners often are required to travel regularly to work at meeting sites and attend events they organize. Although most are employed as full-time status, many are required to work long irregular hours to prepare for major events.
As businesses and organizations are growing to be increasingly international, it is becoming more important than ever before to arrange meetings and conventions to bring members together for valuable face-to-face interactions. Therefore, employment for event planners to arrange these meetings is expected to grow much faster than average at a rapid rate of 44 percent, which will create 31,300 new jobs before 2020. The most promising prospects are likely to be for event planners with a bachelor’s degree in hospitality management and those with professional credentials as a Certified Meeting Planner (CMP).