How Big Bounce hires their event workforce around Australia

“Sidekicker is the best staffing solution we’ve ever used–both in Australia and the U.S”


Tom Gay
Event Production Manager


Per hour saved over traditional labour hire firms

The client

Big Bounce is the world’s largest inflatable theme park, touring around Australia for 3 months of the year. 


Workforce makeup

Big Bounce has a core team of 12 that travel with the event, as well as a centralised production manager and executive team in America.

Big Bounce requires up to 40 frontline staff to execute each event, working in a variety of roles from setup & packdown, box office, and ticket scanning to MC-ing and misting consumers on hot days.


Business challenges

Being an American-founded event, running in Australia for a short period of time posed the following challenges:

  • No expertise in or experience with Australian casual labour laws would make recruitment, HR and payroll time consuming and risky
  • The short length of staffing requirements (Big Bounce runs in each city for 2 weeks) would make it difficult to source and screen the best talent

To resolve these challenges, Big Bounce required a local staffing provider to help source and manage their frontline workforce, however also experienced drawbacks with traditional labour hire:

  • No agencies could fulfil all labour requirements, with suppliers only able to provide either manual labour, or promotional staff, or event staff.
  • Managing multiple suppliers and having to deal with several systems and processes would be too time consuming and inefficient
  • This also meant the quotes they received were high and they could not utilise volume-based discounts, with their labour spend fragmented across so many agencies.

“We got quotes from several different agencies. They were expensive, and we didn’t want to deal with multiple suppliers, all with different processes for everything like rosters, checking in staff, time capture and invoicing.” – Tom Gay, Event Production Manager

Sidekicker’s solution

After receiving a referral from Openair Cinemas, Big Bounce made the decision to utilise Sidekicker for their event workforce across Australia.

Full managed workforce 

Sidekicker built a customised solution to manage all aspects of Big Bounce’s frontline workforce:

  • Campaign plan created
  • Recruit from Sidekicker’s marketplace of pre-vetted staff
  • Sidekicker’s recruitment specialist creates Talent Pools of the best applicants
  • Big Bounce reviews Talent Pools and selects staff using detailed profiles with experience, ratings and reviews from other businesses like theirs
  • Big Bounce’s account manager schedules staff based on Big Bounce’s initial projected roster requirements
  • As any requirements change, Big Bounce’s team simply requests additional staff through the platform and is able to fill any unforecasted staffing gaps in minutes
  • Sidekicker handles all time & attendance and payroll of staff

“Sidekicker is so much easier than any labour solution we’ve used in the States, and is the best customer support system I’ve ever dealt with”

A single agency for all labour requirements

Unlike other suppliers, Sidekicker provides the full scope of event staffing requirements, creating efficiencies and reducing rates for Big Bounce. 

“Sidekicker has such a strong marketplace of staff–brand ambassadors, box office staff, manual labour–they’re experts in recruiting and screening for all of these roles and have an unparalleled breadth of quality across the board.”

Flexibility and visibility for all stakeholders

Sidekicker’s solution provides value across all levels of Big Bounce’s organisation.

The Sidekicker platform offers their event management team benefits like Daily Staff Lists with geo-location tracking, online requests for last minute needs, staff profiles so they have control over who works for them, and simple online scheduling.

Big Bounce also has total choice–able to completely outsource anything they need to, or control the things that matter to them.

The Sidekicker platform also provides Big Bounce’s senior team with full visibility through live reporting dashboards.

“Sidekicker is so simple – it’s the easiest system I’ve ever worked with in my entire life. And our executive team absolutely love it too – they can see everything going on all in real-time.”


The results

  • 278 Sidekicks hired across Australia for their 2019/20 season
  • Average Sidekick rating: 5/5
  • Saved an average of $20 per hour worked compared to traditional labour hire quotes

“When we first got the quote from Sidekicker we questioned why it was so much cheaper–but after working with them realised that the efficiencies and process improvements that they create with their technology cut so many costs that traditional agencies would have.

They eliminate the middleman where they can, but then also have the team, systems and processes in place to maintain consistent staff quality.

The staff quality has been en point and we’ve got exactly what we’ve needed for every event.”


Tom Gay
Event Production Manager