The Essendon Football Club (FC) has selected Professional Advantage , an Australian business technology and services specialist, to develop and deploy a new customer relationship management (CRM) system which will help to provide more targeted services to the Club's 260,000 members and contacts. Development of the CRM application forms the second half of a two-year technology project that has already seen Professional Advantage deploy the Microsoft Dynamics GP financial system and Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System at the Club.
The customer relationship management system will integrate with the retail and financial systems along with existing ticketing and event applications to provide a holistic view of how Essendon fans and friends interact with the Club - from the beginning to the end of each individual relationship. This information will form the platform to engage with its community of supporters to enhance their experience with the club. In addition members will be able to access and manage their membership data via the Essendon FC website. The customer relationship management system application is expected to go live in time for the 1 November launch of the new membership year.
Andrew Watson, Chief Information Officer at Essendon Football Club, indicated the whole project is about putting in a platform that will enable the club to more easily understand and analyse our business, and that opens the way for collaboration with business partners, sponsors and members. Their membership system is central to everything the Club does, so there's a lot of focus on ensuring that this new system is 100 percent right.
Essendon FC is the only club within the Australian Football League to maintain its own stand alone website. The Club retained 100% control of its website’s content and design as it saw it as the most cost effective way of engaging with its one million supporters across Australia and has enabled a proactive approach to the development of new member services. essendonfc.com.au attracts upwards of 15,000 unique browsers per week in-season and generates revenue in excess of $1.5 million annually.
“Essendon has taken a particularly far-sighted view of its information systems,” says Derek Rippingale, Managing Director at Professional Advantage. “The steps they have taken in retail and financial management are already supporting improved inventory, purchasing and reporting. This next phase will help to identify what is occurring with each member throughout their relationship with the Club.”