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CASE STUDY: Edinburgh University Sports Union achieves engagement goals with the MSL System®

University of Edinburgh Sports Union logo

May 2019 - Edinburgh University Sports’ Union (EUSU) joined the MSL community in 2016, following a search for the digital resources needed to support the diverse requirements of their clubs, members and recreational sport participants.

The MSL System® has helped EUSU increase club memberships by 21% from the start of year 2016-17 to term three 2018-19, with sports club members totalling 6,900; the robust events and ticketing platform has supported all clubs by allowing them to promote 1,300 events and sell 11,700 tickets to date.

Plans are now in place to refine the democratic process courtesy of the integral MSL Elections system and EUSU is looking forward to some of their best results in forthcoming committee and officer elections.

Updating EUSU’s digital presence

Edinburgh University Sports Union clubs pageDuring the summer of 2016, the EUSU and MSL teams started the implementation project to create a brand new online experience for sports participation at Edinburgh University. The MSL System was tasked with helping EUSU staff and elected officers deliver exceptional services to 65 clubs, their 8,000+ members and the wider university community.

The new website was designed to make it easy for students to find information about social and competitive sports opportunities across three facilities in Edinburgh, streamline the joining process, promote events and training and push the health and wellbeing benefits of sports participation.  The digital membership management resources were launched in August 2016 ready for Welcome Week and the start of the academic year.

EUSU’s implementation project lead, Ross Simpson, Head of Sports Development, said:

The system has professionalised how we as an organisation operate as a whole. Students experience a better service from their clubs, and committee members can carry out their roles more efficiently and comfortable in the knowledge that all their club finances and data is being well managed. The implementation of the system was seamless and we have been very grateful for the continuous improvement approach from MSL and their staff.

Providing extra-curricular enrichment

The MSL System’s events, ticketing and ecommerce facilities were of particular importance for EUSU; in addition to club activities and taster sessions, the coaching and training activities play an important part in the recruitment and on-going development of club leaders and Sports’ Union officers. These social and skill-building opportunities support the University’s student retention strategies and so the ability to effectively promote events and track uptake and impact is critical to EUSU.

EUSU’s CVA intern, Hugh Braidwood, said:

MSL has been key to maximising the impact of our Coaching & Volunteering Academy offering for students. Being able to have a calendar of events, all in the one place, has been extremely useful for students as they explore our training & development opportunities. Being able to create events, and add various ticket options has also been great for our bigger events for which we have had various attendance options. This has also allowed us to better track attendees, and follow-up after events with regards to event feedback.

Supporting student run clubs

EUSU exists to promote access to sport at university for both competitive athletes and recreational participants. The structure of club sports with the EDex sports experience programme and intramural sports encourages as many students as possible to take part at a level of commitment they can manage alongside studies.

The MSL System supports participation with comprehensive club resources – managed by committee members with appropriate permissions – including the ability to sell different membership types, create event content for the website and put tickets and products on sale. In depth reporting on memberships, renewals, demographics, participation and sales is available to users with reporting access and to EUSU administrators.

Ultimate Frisbee President, Iain Campbell said:

Having membership information all online with all the senior committee able to see it has been great for club management, especially when running multiple teams with different memberships.

EUSU achievements with the MSL System

  • Overall EUSU membership has grown from 5,900 to 7,200
  • The two largest BUCS sports clubs, Women’s Hockey and Snowsports, increased membership by 104% and 42% respectively
  • There has been a 90% increase in non-BUCS sports participation

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