How long has the league been using Pitchero?
The Hull & District Youth League first discovered and started using Pitchero in the summer of 2009.
Why did the league choose to use Pitchero?
I attended a Hull Kingston Rovers Clublink seminar at which Pitchero was present, I thought the ideas put forward were interesting and of potential benefit to the youth league in Hull. What really convinced me to champion the introduction of Pitchero into the league's portfolio was the willingness of them to both explain in detail the whole concept but to also listen to the needs of our league and make improvements when required.
What were your first impressions?
It was an extremely good one. At the time Pitchero I think took a chance by allowing me to access and use the league's administrator panels, which you have to understand at that time, were still under development. This access which in effect was almost a preview of what was to come allowed me to explore the potential of the system they had designed and see for myself the benefit this could potentially bring to the Youth League.
What sealed the deal was their encouragement and wiliness to receive and act upon feedback that I provided and importantly where my thoughts and ideas did not match the Pitchero roadmap they took the time and effort to explain why.
Do you find updating and managing the website easy?
Navigation around the league and divisional panels was extremely easy, even when those panels were being developed. Information was laid out in a sensible and intuitive manner and when I needed help Pitchero staff were always quick to respond.
Have the Pitchero team been helpful?
Incredibly so, they did not try to force the product on me, but actively encouraged feedback to help them develop their offering further.
Have you received positive feedbacks?
I think the best way to answer this is to point out that before we discovered Pitchero, around three clubs had websites of their own and some of those were never updated. Within six months every club in our league had their own Pitchero club website which they had linked to the leagues website to take advantage of the features there.
I have also helped the Yorkshire Combination Youth League and Hull & District Open Age League develop their own Pitchero league websites. Again over 75% of clubs in these leagues used Pitchero to create their club websites - which is impressive given the geographical differences involved.
What does the league get most from using Pitchero?
It provides an effective, fast and reliable communication path to all its member clubs and volunteers.
Has Pitchero improved management and communication across your league?
Absolutely! The real hidden benefit was the ability of the league to reach volunteers, players and supporters at our member clubs directly and not through club secretaries who often did not have the time or the communication structures within their own clubs to reach such a wide audience.
Feedback from clubs too was positive as many reported new parent volunteers coming forward who, through the website's forums, began first talking with each other online and then talking together on the touchlines during the game that weekend.
The site empowered many individuals to speak with club officials who previously they did not know or were hesitant to make contact with. This brought not only extra human resources to community clubs but often offers of sponsorship and other such items which are invaluable to community clubs across the country.
Has Pitchero improved the profile of your league online?
Without doubt, we made use of tools on the internet to monitor the traffic flowing through the site providing us with hard evidence of how many people started to access the information we was providing. Not only where club members viewing what was going on in our league on a daily basis, they continued to do so even when on holiday abroad as we could see the hits from other countries too.
As a further bonus, the improved profile was backed by hard cash from a number of sponsors who were willing to put money into the site to advertise their own business.
Has Pitchero saved your league money?
The fact that the service is free to both the league and its member clubs means without doubt our league and its clubs saved the expense of hiring resource from other sources. However the real saving is in the extra resources the websites existence has brought to all within the league.
Would you recommend Pitchero to another league?
In a shot, Pitchero has been instrumental in enabling our league and member clubs to grow and that is an opportunity no league can realistically afford to turn down.
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