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Scott Lasker is the Senior Director of Guest and Event Services for the Buffalo Bills, a professional American football team competing in the National Football League. Prior to 24/7 Software, the Buffalo Bills required a software solution that would give their enterprise a way to manage incidents, deploy real-time communications, and capture complete and accurate documentation for useful reporting resulting in important insight..
After implementing 24/7 Software, Scott Lasker quickly experienced the awareness afforded by 24/7 Software’s platform. The deployment of mobile apps reduced radio traffic each year, and consistent reporting highlighted an interesting fact – a stadium section with the most overall activity on a game day.
The Buffalo Bills evaluated platforms that incorporated the needs of their stadium operations. They wanted an all-inclusive solutions provider offering a platform that met the long-term requirements of their operation.
“We wanted a company that was user-friendly and was able to provide us with a complete incident tracking system and a way to compile and report the information from those incidents. We were also looking for a company that could help us with purchase orders and maintenance tracking.”
Scott revealed that they learned quickly they wouldn’t need to look very far:
“We asked our counterparts in the NFL, and the trend in 2012 was to use 24/7 Software. The NFL used it at the Pro Bowl and the Super Bowl, and a few teams had just started using it.” In 2018, 26 of the 31 NFL stadiums use 24/7 Software’s platform.
Scott explained that “we found 24/7 Software offered us the complete package. Not only was it an incident management system but it could also help us on the operational side with purchase orders, maintenance schedules, and much more. It is easy to use (specifically compared to the provider we were using at the time), was more cost-effective, and was the direction that the NFL was heading in as well.”
One of the most critical applications of 24/7 Software for the Buffalo Bills is the increase in awareness and communication on game day. Scott’s team can identify locations with high levels of activity, formulate a strategy for resources allocation, coordinate with associated groups, and then communicate critical details in real time.
“24/7 Software helps us determine the time during the game that most of our activities take place and the general location (e.g., Upper Level, Lower Level, Parking Lots, or Plazas). Since we have third-party providers that run our security and cleaning staff, this information is invaluable to us. That way we can recommend staffing strategies based on timing and location.”
Since implementing 24/7 Software, the most prominent benefit to the Buffalo Bills is the ability to see (and manage) what is indeed happening on their property on game day. From being able to track incidents, maintenance issues, and lost & found items in real time to generating recap reports instantaneously after an event has ended, has all helped to improve their operation immensely.
“We have been able to track our true data year to year as it relates to Fan Code of Conduct issues. We can see exactly how many people have been ejected, arrested, and warned. We even track trends regarding these incidents. We’ve learned what sections have the most incidents year after year and thus are able to reallocate our resources on game day.”
24/7 Software’s platform allows the Buffalo Bills to compile data that would otherwise take them weeks to gather and analyze, thus saving them time, money, and resources.
“We get instant access to what is happening on our property. For example, notification of certain incident types as they occur provides us with the capability to provide information about emergency situations to all of the necessary people in a timely manner,” Scott explained.
Proactive management of all operational functions is a crucial aspect of why the Buffalo Bills utilize 24/7 Software, and at the level they do. Scott shared three significant areas that the platform helps the Buffalo Bills maximize their performance: real-time communication of issues and incidents, lost & found management, and proactive maintenance.
For real-time communication, the Buffalo Bills are not only using the platform to report to the command center via Text Communication and the Incident Management Mobile App; they’re getting responses back from guests and staff about issues and incidents that are not as important. This two-way communication helps them get answers about lower-priority incidents, so they can manage resources accordingly.
Additionally, Scott’s team will send text messages to all devices to communicate different event markers – all of which is happening in real time.
Scott continues that “Lost Child communication was only done through radio communication in the past. Now, everything is efficiently communicated through the mobile app and text system. All staff can get the information. Anytime an arrest takes place; we send a text out to about 10-15 staff with basic information related to the situation (i.e., Arrest for trespassing at Gate 5). We never had this ability previously because you never want to send sensitive information like this over the radio.”
“Someone used to turn in, for example, a lost glove at booth 101 and walk around to all the guest services booths to locate the found item. Now, someone with a laptop can identify the found item and send guests to the correct booth,” said Scott about their efficient yet straightforward process for managing lost & found.
Scott explained how managing maintenance has also improved for the Buffalo Bills. According to him, they now “send maintenance issues through text with a picture of the broken equipment or furniture so the maintenance team can see which tools to bring to the issue. This information is sent right to command, and the maintenance crew responds immediately.”
The Buffalo Bills always end their events by generating reports, reviewing the results, and communicating the details to all need-to-know individuals. Reports are sent out once an event closes and then when Scott officially closes the game on Tuesday.
“A report will be sent to our Executive Team and President, so they know what happens as a true snapshot: the number of incidents and resolutions and the top-ten incidents of the day. This information gives them a basic understanding of the day without having to go through all the details.”
Scott outlined interesting insight and notable improvements to their process that their reports brought to light. Most interesting, is that one section has the most overall activity on game day – something which would not be known without the reporting capabilities provided by 24/7 Software.
“During the 2015 season, we had 100% of our incidents reported via the radio. During the 2016 season, we had 20% of our incidents reported via Conversations and the Communicator App. During the 2017 season, we had 26% of our incidents reported via Conversations and the Communicator App.”