Welcome!

Blog Feed Post

Why Football is Missing an Open Goal

Football is a global business, and business today means blending the commercial with technological know-how. But while commercial success in football is a refined art, the use of technology to manage key operations is yet to kick off. Jesper Frederiksen, VP EMEA (and lifelong Chelsea fan),DocuSign, gives an honest appraisal of the next big technology debate in football.

 

Football is missing an open goal when it comes to technology. Don’t worry, I’m not bringing up the goal line technology debate (which frankly, after the near apocalyptic arguments of recent years, hasn’t caused the slightest problem at the World Cup). Believe it or not, I’m referring to fax machines.

 

You may not be aware of this, but multi-million pound deals involving some of the most finely tuned athletes on the planet (and their finely tuned sponsorship deals), who live some of the most glamorous and tech-savvy lifestyles (from performance analysis to the cars they drive), are often completed with a fax machine.

 

Football’s winners and losers

To understand the tensions in the world of football transfers, you only need to look at Manchester United’s saga with Ander Herrera. After a failed pursuit by (now former) Manchester United manager David Moyes last season, this year’s summer transfer window also saw United’s first bid rejected. Herrera conducted a medical and flew to Manchester to finalise the buy, in an extended series of bargaining that included the footballer paying his own transfer fee. After causing one hell of a stir, the bid was accepted and went through.

 

But this little piece of drama is nothing compared to the stress at the 11pm closing of the transfer window - the next one being the end of the summer on 1st September. This is a time when boardrooms become furnaces, fuelled by the friction of clubs and players striking deals... and completing paperwork.

 

Final whistle

The ‘ completing paperwork’ bit probably seems an anti-climax compared to the glamour of football. But those documents are legal requirements to allow some of the planet’s best players to compete in one of the world’s finest football leagues. As with any legal or business transaction, high-value transfers can only be approved if the correct forms are signed, covering medical forms, transfer agreements between clubs, player wages, international clearance and visa issues.

 

It’s a shame that football - an industry at the forefront of performance management, sports science and sponsorship - is so behind the times when it comes to ‘paperwork.’ The reliance on a fax machine churning out paper at 22:55, with just five minutes before deadline, is ridiculous really. The equivalent in match terms is putting players on a long bus ride to play on a slopey pitch full of potholes. It’s just not how the game operates today.

 

Hot property

Many years ago, the property industry began a debate that has subsequently caused a shift in legislation and professional behaviour. The shift I’m talking about was in relation to e-signatures, and their ability to streamline the exchange of legally binding documents. The Electronic Communications Act 2000 enabled the legal finalisation of contracts via electronic means, while in 2001 the Law Commission published a paper advising the government that requirements for writing a signature can be legally satisfied by electronic means. This was just the start.

 

This opportunity to do business more efficiently and flexibly has delighted the players in the world of property sales and letting. More than 50,000 letting and estate professionals use DocuSign to sign and send millions of documents - encompassing residential and commercial real estate, property management, mortgage documentation and more.

Don’t misunderstand me here - the property sector as a whole is far from having made a complete transition to e-signatures. But they are being used to great effect already, and uptake looks set to grow and grow. With sentiment today so geared to the immediate, and working behaviour no longer as locationally specific, the property industry isn’t being left behind.

Football is.

 

Get your fax straight

Football is yet to take on the innovative approach that’s developing in the property market. To this day players are required to sign in-person, or fax their contracts through to numerous notaries, which causes huge delays and leaves all parties lacking a digital audit trail. That’s just not how we do business nowadays.

 

The question is, why are we not seeing new technology adopted off the pitch, as happens on the pitch through goal-line technology? Brands like Manchester United, paying £29m for Herrera, shouldn’t be operating like a 1990s businesses. The stakes are too high.

Football clubs could have their high value players’ medical and contractual documentation signed and processed through an entirely digital platform, which would reduce the lead times and stresses associated with the process. Players still involved in the World Cup’s latter stages could still be signing new contracts from the team training camp or their hotel room. All it would require is a mobile device.

 

Football and ‘football’

This isn’t an unprecedented move.  In the US, electronic signatures have been adopted by the NFL Player’s Association in order to avoid such a contract-signing fiasco happening again. And it’s a pure good news story for the clubs themselves, removing the need for expensive air travel or agents to be flown all over the world. Digital Transaction Management (DTM) and eSignature technology could turn the transfer window into one of the high points of the season, instead of a pit of stress and despair. This technology should be grabbed with both hands by the FA, to allow the beautiful game to fully modernize the way it does business. In fact, the game would be even more beautiful with the economic and environmental benefits associated with DTM.

 

So come on football clubs. Us fans have enough heartache during the season and in major competitions. Make the transfer window a little bit easier for us (and yourselves) so we can get excited about seeing the world’s greatest football talent playing in our league...instead of worrying that the dear old fax machine is going to force you into scoring an own goal.

 

 

Read the original blog entry...

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev, a client-oriented software development company, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MobiDev is a software company that develops and delivers turn-key mobile apps, websites, web services, and complex software systems for startups and enterprises. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business...
SYS-CON Events announced today that GrapeUp, the leading provider of rapid product development at the speed of business, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market acr...
"We are a monitoring company. We work with Salesforce, BBC, and quite a few other big logos. We basically provide monitoring for them, structure for their cloud services and we fit into the DevOps world" explained David Gildeh, Co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st Int\ernational Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to focus on the core of their ...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...
While DevOps most critically and famously fosters collaboration, communication, and integration through cultural change, culture is more of an output than an input. In order to actively drive cultural evolution, organizations must make substantial organizational and process changes, and adopt new technologies, to encourage a DevOps culture. Moderated by Andi Mann, panelists discussed how to balance these three pillars of DevOps, where to focus attention (and resources), where organizations might...
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann and Aruna Ravichandran have been named Co-Chairs of @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley which will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "DevOps is at the intersection of technology and business-optimizing tools, organizations and processes to bring measurable improvements in productivity and profitability," said Aruna Ravichandran, vice president, DevOps product and solutions marketing...
Automation is enabling enterprises to design, deploy, and manage more complex, hybrid cloud environments. Yet the people who manage these environments must be trained in and understanding these environments better than ever before. A new era of analytics and cognitive computing is adding intelligence, but also more complexity, to these cloud environments. How smart is your cloud? How smart should it be? In this power panel at 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, pane...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Academy named "Bronze Sponsor" of 21st International Cloud Expo which will take place October 31 - November 2, 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cloud Academy is the industry’s most innovative, vendor-neutral cloud technology training platform. Cloud Academy provides continuous learning solutions for individuals and enterprise teams for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and the most popular cloud com...
We build IoT infrastructure products - when you have to integrate different devices, different systems and cloud you have to build an application to do that but we eliminate the need to build an application. Our products can integrate any device, any system, any cloud regardless of protocol," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA
What's the role of an IT self-service portal when you get to continuous delivery and Infrastructure as Code? This general session showed how to create the continuous delivery culture and eight accelerators for leading the change. Don Demcsak is a DevOps and Cloud Native Modernization Principal for Dell EMC based out of New Jersey. He is a former, long time, Microsoft Most Valuable Professional, specializing in building and architecting Application Delivery Pipelines for hybrid legacy, and cloud ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM has been named “Diamond Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st Cloud Expo, which will take place on October 31 through November 2nd 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
In the world of DevOps there are ‘known good practices’ – aka ‘patterns’ – and ‘known bad practices’ – aka ‘anti-patterns.' Many of these patterns and anti-patterns have been developed from real world experience, especially by the early adopters of DevOps theory; but many are more feasible in theory than in practice, especially for more recent entrants to the DevOps scene. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists discussed...
In his session at Cloud Expo, Alan Winters, an entertainment executive/TV producer turned serial entrepreneur, presented a success story of an entrepreneur who has both suffered through and benefited from offshore development across multiple businesses: The smart choice, or how to select the right offshore development partner Warning signs, or how to minimize chances of making the wrong choice Collaboration, or how to establish the most effective work processes Budget control, or how to ma...