From Original Event Space Ask to Unexpected “Wow-Flip” Orientation

We See Solutions.

“I don't see challenges...
I see opportunities"

The Australian Defence Industry Awards had been so impressed with Encore’s work for them in 2022, they had returned this year for a repeat performance. Then, just four weeks before the event that had been fastidiously planned six months in advance, a call comes in…

“We love it, but can we change the orientation of the room?”

Technical Director Hamish McConchie and team sprang into action, the hugely successful results speak for themselves.

Hamish McConchie

Technical Event Director
The Event

The Australian Defence Industry Awards are an annual fixture, and biggest event in the industry’s calendar. This year, just under 1,000 attendees had been anticipated. This would be their second year with Encore with the 2022 event having been hugely successful. The Awards were looking for a permanent home and the capital was the natural choice, plus a tried-and-true venue at the National Convention Centre in Canberra. They loved the previous year and were confident in Encore’s abilities to perform.

The Challenge

“We realise it’s just four weeks until the event and we really love what you’ve done, but can you flip the orientation of the room? And not entirely blow the budget?”

The call that Hamish McConchie had not been expecting that afternoon from the customer. But Hamish did not say no, and in true Encore style, Hamish and team started to see solutions.

The space’s orientation at this point was landscape, with attendees entering the room from the short side and the focal point then being the long side to the left.

The plans had been in place now for six months, including PA systems, 45ft projection screens, rigging, draping, seating, lighting and everything you could expect for an event of this size. The equipment was prepared, the rigging mapped out, teams briefed and budget meticulously planned…but inside three hours, Hamish made what appeared to be mission impossible, possible.

The Solution

Hamish lives and breathes the National Convention Centre; and has a very thorough knowledge of the space’s capabilities and equipment inventory. He’s run a wide array of events here, of all shapes and sizes.

When this challenge presented itself, he knew it was doable, it was just how to do it and not blow the budget. He kept in mind that the brief was the same, it was just the orientation that had changed. Immediately, he began to rework the original plans to the new orientation. Within three hours, he had presented the client with a working solution.

  • The new plan would involve attendees entering from that same previous point but meeting the focal point of the room head on, giving an instant wow factor. Making the room experience now wide rather than long.

  • Knowing the space was a huge advantage and with all equipment being Encore owned, operated and onsite, this meant Hamish had total freedom and knew what capabilities he had at hand. Keeping it in house meant Hamish was nimble, not having to wait for external suppliers to quote or return calls on availability, delivery and more.

  • Both the rigging and audio would need to be entirely redesigned, then the two huge projection screens would need to be repositioned. Additional draping would be required. He then had to ensure all technicians on the team were re-briefed.

  • The audio redesign turned out to be simpler than the original, with the system now just requiring a two-speaker system rather than the originally planned five.

Key solutions used:
  • Equipment: The team meticulously planned each element of the event, meaning they foresaw each key piece of equipment required and ensured it was available on site.
    Encore’s vast array of resources made this both possible and seamless.
  • Encore vast array of resources: Being able to access everything in-house without external suppliers made it a lot more straight forward, and Hamish had full confidence in the new plan as he can trust and rely on his Encore team and gear.
  • Venue knowledge: Hamish’s in-depth knowledge of the space meant he was uniquely positioned to bring the client a revised plan in record time.
The Result

The revised plan achieved the flipped orientation, stayed within budget and brought that all important, instant impact the client had been looking for. 

The end result was spectacular. Hamish’s plan executed beautifully, and the portrait orientation gave The Australian Defence Industry Awards that wow factor. The client team were amazed at how quickly Hamish was able to come up with the completely new plan and without blowing their budget. 

They were very happy. 

Informal discussions on 2024’s event were already taking place on the night itself, a sure sign of success.

Hamish pic circle

About Hamish:

Hamish McConchie lives and breathes events.

He loves how no two events will ever be exactly the same and he thrives on the challenge, the thinking on your feet and problem solving that’s a big part of the job. “It’s a job that makes you both mentally and physically challenge yourself, definitely gets the adrenaline going. Planning and preparing for all the situations that may lie ahead.”

For Hamish, customer collaboration is vital, as happy clients tend to mean repeat business, it’s so important to work hand in hand. In the rare moment he’s not on site, Hamish is an avid craftsman and cat owner.

Hamish finds that Encore being a global company, no other event business has the same resources available.

“Our vast network means we can come up with any solution thanks to these huge resources. We See Solutions is like a backstage tour of the event, attendees and clients see the finished production, but what goes on behind the scenes and during the build is a production in itself.”

Explore More Solution Success Stories.

From routine challenges to the moment of truth that threatens to derail your event, our people solve them
flawlessly. Explore their stories.

CTA Icon
Tell us about your unique needs.