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23 September 2015

A core business management system to accommodate a sporting clubs growth plans

A core business management system to accommodate a sporting clubs growth plans

Having a keen interest in sport myself, particularly football, it was of great interest to me when we first spoke to Bristol City.  It became apparent very early on in our discussions that any potential project was about more than just a football club.  As we were introduced to the concept it became clear that Bristol Sport are completely changing the way the industry works.

Steven Lansdown’s vision for Bristol Sport is both inspiring and intriguing.  Modelled on Barcelona’s multi-sport approach, Bristol Sport looks after the interests of Bristol Rugby Club, the Bristol Flyers Basketball team, Bristol Academy Women FC, Bristol Ladies Rugby and Bristol Sport Racing in addition to the successful Bristol City.

On my first visit to Ashton Gate the home of Bristol City and Bristol Rugby Club which Bristol Sport manages, large parts were undergoing massive redevelopment, a mix of a traditional British stadium surrounded by houses and a striking modern new design.  I was shown the plans which when complete will transform the stadium into an impressive state-of-the-art 27,000 seater venue.  It will then become more than just a sports stadium, functioning as a premium conference and events venue as well, and a real focal point for the people of Bristol and something for them to be incredibly proud of.

In offices on the perimeter of the site the vision was shared with us in more detail, projects were already underway to implement ticketing and point of sale system and it was important that the system we implemented could easily integrate with other key business software.  Bringing all the various sports clubs under one banner isn’t without its complexities and we needed to provide a centralised system for Finance to effectively manage this.  Equally important was the ability to keep month end processing simple and provide detailed reports and Business Intelligence.  Finally it was stressed upon us that we had to ensure that future growth plans were not restricted.

Bristol Sport recognised that we could provide them with a business management system that can be the backbone of their success and with the kind of scalability they need as a growing company.  In addition to that the system needed to be cost effective and rapid to deploy to meet some tight deadlines.  It was a proud moment for us as a company when the contract was signed and we feel very much part of the Bristol Sport project.

To date the project has gone well and we are nearing Go Live around the time of the new football season.  Aside from the software, as with any new business system implementation in any industry the key to the success has been how well our two organisations have worked together, we have been very much one team.

From my perspective, aside from seeing Sage X3 bed in for Bristol Sport over the coming months and really start to deliver business benefit, it will really interest me to continue to watch the organisation develop.  Bristol Sport have been very active on social media with the #MakingBristolProud message and if Bristol City do make a real push for the Premiership in this or future seasons the facilities will be in place for the club and the City to really be proud of.

By Chris Stock, MD

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