Wedding Planning

5 Systems Wedding Pros SHOULD Have (+ Couples Should Ask About)

April 15, 2024

< back to blog home

Hey there, event professionals and couples alike! Today, we’re talking about something a little less exciting than flowers and cake, but just as important in making sure your wedding day is exactly as you envisioned. I’ve stressed the importance of systems over and over again when it comes to bringing a wedding day to fruition. Today, I’m walking you through five systems wedding pros should have. Couples and vendors there is a lot of helpful information here for you as well. Let's dive in!







Apple Podcasts  |  Stitcher  |  Spotify  | iHeartRadio

You can also listen on your Alexa-enabled device. Just ask “Alexa, play the Ask the Planner podcast.”


  • The inquiry and proposal process [5:01]
  • Your onboarding workflow [10:20]
  • About the client experience [13:52]
  • Your wedding day service [17:42]
  • Managing Payments and Invoices [20:58]
  • 2 More Systems Wedding Pros Need to Have [23:58]

And if you prefer to read, here's the summary of the podcast episode!

Inquiry/Proposal Process

First off, let’s talk about the inquiry/proposal process. Couples, when you reach out to a vendor, the way they handle your inquiry says a lot about how they'll treat your wedding. A vendor with a solid system in place is like a friend who's got their act together—they respond quickly, understand what you're looking for, and make you feel like you're in good hands. 

So, what should this process look like? Ideally, it starts with a quick response to your initial contact. You’ll want to respond within 24 hours and then smoothly transition into a get-to-know-you phase, where you learn about your new couples vision. Depending on your service, it’s important to get a handle on what your couple is looking for before you can send over the quote!

Next, you’ll either want to schedule a call with your couple to get to know them or you can just move right to the proposal phase. Because of the personal nature of what we do, we always schedule a call with our potential couples.

Assuming they’re a good fit, next you’ll want to send a detailed, personalized proposal that outlines how you can bring their dream wedding to life, with clear pricing, services, and what makes you the right choice for them This document is crucial. It's where expectations are set, and transparency is key. You should feel like they fully understand what they're getting, with no hidden surprises.

I highly recommend taking the time to map out template responses and forms right from the start. We do all of this in Dubsado. While we still tailor every email to be unique and personalized to each inquiry, templates give us a place to start. If you haven’t signed up yet, you can get 20% off with the code DESIREE.

Onboarding Process

Next, we have the onboarding process. This system kicks off AFTER you’ve paid your first deposit and have signed the contract with your chosen vendor. It’s the first step in what should be an exciting collaboration, setting the tone for everything that follows. 

For couples, this is the moment to soak in the excitement of having chosen a vendor to bring your wedding vision to life. It’s also when you’ll get a clear picture of what working together will look like. You should expect to receive a detailed overview of the process, what’s expected from you, and what you can expect from your vendor. It’s the vendor’s job to ensure you’re not left with any uncertainties about the next steps.

Vendors, your onboarding process is a golden opportunity to reinforce your couple's decision to choose you. It should be structured to not only inform but also to excite and reassure your clients. This might include a welcome packet, either digital or physical, that outlines the journey ahead.

Communication is key during onboarding. Make sure your clients know how and when to reach you, and introduce them to any platforms or tools you’ll be using to manage their wedding planning process. This is also the perfect time to set clear expectations about response times and how the planning will progress.

Adding a personal touch or a small surprise can make all the difference in the onboarding experience. Whether it’s a handwritten note, a small gift related to their wedding theme, or a celebratory bottle of champagne, these gestures show your clients they’re valued and appreciated. If you need ideas of people to put together your welcome gifts we highly recommend Alexandra from Lavender and Pine. She was on episode 47 last season and is amazing.



Client Experience

Next, let’s talk about the client experience. Having a solid client experience system and workflow in place is critical to ensuring every couple feels supported and understood throughout their planning journey. 

When reaching out to vendors, couples should ask about the systems they use to manage projects. Is it a series of checklists? Regular meetings or calls? Online planning tools? Knowing this upfront can give you a glimpse into how your planning process will unfold.

Vendors, you should be upfront about how much involvement is needed from the couple. Are you the type to take the reins and check in with big decisions only, or do you prefer a more collaborative approach with tasks and decisions shared along the way? This clarity helps set expectations and ensures that couples know what they're signing up for.

The other thing to consider is communication style and frequency, which play a massive role in the client experience. Vendors should outline how often couples can expect updates and through what channels—be it email, phone calls, or a planning app. Consistent communication not only keeps the couple in the loop but also builds trust and reduces stress.

Moreover, vendors should emphasize the importance of a consistent experience for all clients. No matter how busy the season gets, every couple should feel like they're the only ones getting married. This means having a system that guarantees the same level of attention, detail, and care to every event, regardless of its size or budget.

For couples, don't hesitate to ask your vendors about their client experience systems. How will they ensure your wedding gets the attention it deserves? What steps do they take to make the planning process smooth and enjoyable for you?

Wedding Day Delivery

Next, when it comes to the wedding day itself, having a bulletproof system in place is what separates good vendors from great ones. This is the day when all the planning, decisions, and dreams come to life, and let me tell you, it's as crucial for vendors to have their ducks in a row as it is for couples to feel confident in those handling their big day.

Couples, this is your moment to dive deep and ask your vendors about their wedding day protocols. How do they ensure everything goes off without a hitch? It's not just about having a plan; it's about having a plan B, C, and even D. From timelines to contingency plans for unexpected weather, to how they coordinate with other vendors, understanding their approach can give you immense peace of mind.

Vendors, your wedding day system is your blueprint for success. It should detail everything from setup times, roles and responsibilities of your team, to how communication flows throughout the day. Having a checklist or a timeline that you share with your couple and other vendors can synchronize efforts, ensuring that everyone is on the same page.

But it’s not just about the logistics. Vendors should also communicate how they plan to deliver the experience and deliverables promised. Whether it’s ensuring the photographer captures those must-have shots, the caterer serves dinner on time, or the DJ plays the right songs at the right moments, it’s these details that make a wedding memorable.

In our humble opinion, consistency is key. Regardless of how busy your season is, every couple deserves to feel like their wedding is the only one that matters. This means having systems that allow you to replicate success, wedding after wedding.

Whether you are a DIY bride or a wedding planner, our Wedding Day Master Organizer is what we use to keep track of EVERY single detail on the wedding day (from rental inventory to your wedding day production schedule). This is an absolute MUST for a smooth wedding day, and you can use code PODCAST10 for 10% off today. 


Lastly, let’s talk about the fifth system that every wedding vendor needs to have. Let's face it, managing the financials is a big part of the wedding planning process. This aspect, is fundamental in keeping everything on track and transparent for both couples and vendors.

Couples, you absolutely have the right to ask detailed questions about the payment schedule, the modes of payment accepted, and how you'll be notified of due payments. This way, you can avoid any surprises or last-minute scrambles. 

For vendors, having a robust system for managing payments and invoicing is non-negotiable. It's not just about ensuring you get paid on time; it's about professionalism and providing a smooth experience for your couples. Using something like Dubsado, which is what we use, automates much of this process. Automated invoicing, payment reminders, and tracking can save a ton of time and reduce the risk of human error. Plus, it keeps everything documented and easy to reference for both parties.

It's also crucial for vendors to communicate clearly about their payment policies. This includes cancellation policies, refund terms, and what happens if there's a change in the scope of work. Transparency here builds trust and prevents misunderstandings down the line.


We’ve covered a LOT when it comes to the five systems we believe all wedding vendors need to have (including what couples should consider asking about). Now, let’s dive deeper into two systems I believe that ALL vendors should have in their toolbox, but couples might not care about as much!




Offboarding might not be the first thing on your mind during the wedding planning process, but for vendors, it’s an important step in wrapping up our collaboration in a way that feels complete and satisfactory for both parties.

Consider having a final wrap-up meeting or communication. This is where you can go over any post-wedding tasks, finalize outstanding payments, and ensure all deliverables have been received and are to your couples satisfaction. It's also a time to discuss any loose ends and how they will be tied up.

One key element of offboarding is the request for reviews. Feedback is invaluable for vendors; it helps us understand what we did well and where we can improve. Plus, positive reviews are gold for attracting future couples. Your couples are busy enjoying married life, so don’t be afraid to send a follow-up email with direct links to review sites to make it easier.

Finally, offboarding is an opportunity for vendors to express gratitude. A simple thank you note, a small parting gift, or even a personalized video message can leave a lasting impression. It’s our way of saying we truly appreciated the opportunity to be a part of your special day and wish you all the best as you start this new chapter.


Finally, our last system may be the most important, you need to have a process for marketing your business. Here at Verve Event Co, we focus primarily on Instagram, blogging for SEO, Pinterest, email marketing, and this podcast! You don’t have to start with everything at once and try to do the same things that we do, but you do need to decide where you want to focus on getting clients and commit to it.

 I know Instagram can seem the most attractive to wedding pros (after all, we have no shortage of stunning images!) but I recommend diversifying your marketing efforts to at least one other platform too! Once you’ve decided where you want to commit, put it in your schedule or project management software so that it actually gets done. Loop your team in if they will be helping you. For example, we use Asana for our marketing tasks, and this podcast has FIFTEEN different to-do items that are then assigned to our team. While you might not have a podcast, think about all of the steps that DO go into the marketing efforts you make, and break it down if that’s helpful for you and your team.

And by the way, if having a podcast IS something that you want to do, head here where I share the exact equipment I use and a few tips for making your recordings as impactful as possible.


And just like that, loverves, we've wrapped up another episode filled 5 systems that every wedding vendor NEEDS to have to execute gorgeous weddings every single time. For our wonderful couples listening, you can absolutely ask about this before you decide to book your vendors.

For my planners that are listening, if you want help getting your systems in place, you can book my 90-day wedding planner coaching and mentorship and we can tackle your systems together! 

Before we sign off, I want to thank each and every one of you for joining me today. Your support means the world to me, and I hope that our journey together brings a little more joy and inspiration into your wedding planning process. Whether you're listening in your car, at the gym, or while sharing a quiet moment with your partner, remember that this journey is all about celebrating love in its most authentic form.


If you have any questions, DM me on Instagram at @asktheplannerpodcast, call the wedding planning hotline at 585-210-3467, or drop it in your review on Apple Podcasts.

Plus, don’t forget to check out the Wedding Planning template shop, including my new Wedding Day Master Organizer which includes the same spreadsheets we use in our day-of production books.

And for all my planners out there, check out my new wedding planner coaching service! Whether you’re in the first 1-2 years of your business and you don’t know how to increase your prices, build a team, attract your ideal clients, find your brand’s voice, or you’re a little further in your career and you want to take it to the next level with a digital product, start a podcast, or something else, I would love to help you build the dream wedding business you deserve!

Learn more and schedule a call with me to see if this is what your business needs at