With a proud history dating back to 1882-83, Hawkes Bay Cricket Association, a constituent association of Central Districts is located on the East Coast of New Zealand's North Island. HBCA, administers all Club, School and Development competitions in the region, managing some 100 plus leagues each year, from senior men's premier club competition down to the under 6's.
We recently caught up with Craig Findlay, CEO of HBCA to find out how CricHQ has helped them to stream-line the management of their cricket leagues.
Setting up all of the leagues and draws prior to the start of the season was a logistical nightmare for Craig and his team. "It took us the best part of a week to ensure we had correctly collected all of the data from team captains, registered all of the players, set up the league tables and associated draws". Weekly administrative tasks such as allocating grounds, managing results and updating league tables was a manual process using spreadsheets. "We had over 100 fixtures that needed to be manipulated manually, says Craig, the process was both time consuming and exposed the association to increased risk of errors. "Once we got to the end of the weekend draws the majority of grounds had already been allocated and that led to us, on several occasions allocating duplicate grounds", recalls Craig.
Additionally, recording post match results, updating tables and providing the information to the media to broadcast to fans was another manual process managed by yet another spreadsheet. Craig recalls the challenges he and his team faced, chasing 100s of volunteers for match day results to collate and forward to media channels to meet the media's tight deadlines. "We did everything we could to chase up the information, but ultimately if the scorecard wasn't made available prior to our Sunday afternoon deadline then it would miss the print run."
What They Did
To effectively manage the approximately 5,000 players, officials, and fans across 335 clubs, schools and age group rep sides participating in more than 100 leagues, the Hawkes Bay Cricket Association needed to adopt technology to coordinate the efforts of it's cricketing community in one centralised location.
Ease of use for all, from HBCA staff to volunteers on the ground, and the ability to cover the needs of a broad spectrum of users was critical to accomplish the overriding objective of an all in one platform to manage cricket administration for multiple leagues. HBCA needed a solution that was scalable across multiple formats, robust enough to capture huge volumes of data, but simple enough for everyday users to instantly feel confident enough to adopt the technology quickly.
In response to their brief, Craig and his team looked at a number of technology solutions for Cricket. After a process of engaging vendors, testing available products and evaluating results, the decision was made to implement CricHQ.
While every organisation is different, the size and volume of the weekly draws being managed by Craig and his team demanded an holistic solution that resolved all of their challenges. HBCA had identified player registration, ground allocation, live scoring, statistics aggregation, post match reporting, and communication with stakeholders and media as the key elements of an effective solution.
The CricHQ Cricket Administration Module, was implemented with the help of CricHQ's support team across all of the organisations leagues, clubs and teams. The support we received from the team at CricHQ was amazing, recalls Craig. "The CricHQ support team travelled to Hawkes Bay and ran several training sessions to help our users get going on the platform prior to the season starting. They've also taken a great deal of care to help me, by training our team to train others, which enables us to get new users up-to-date quickly."
Implementing CricHQ, has been hugely successful for us, we've bought ourselves time to focus on commercial aspects such as key sponsorships, I'm frequently being praised by members of our cricket community who now have real-time access to match results, scores, and social conversations and very quickly we have achieved 90% adoption with minimal effort".
"Setting up our premier men's competition pre-season for example, used to take an entire day each year at HBCA, but now it only takes 3 minutes. Manual tasks like ground allocations are now completed for all of our leagues in less than 1 hour, and media outlets are able to pick-up the results in real-time as they happen without any involvement from me. Not only that but having parents of young, emerging players, excitedly informing me that their Grand Parents are watching the match live on their smartphone in the United Kingdom is a fantastic feeling.
With time savings and increased community engagement achieved, the implementation of CricHQ is a hit for six for the Hawkes Bay Cricket Association."
Craig Findlay - Hawkes Bay Cricket Associa