ACS Saves 100+ Hours with Diamond Scheduler

Case study:
Managing a complex sports program for 7 schools is no easy task. Learn how a key recommendation led to ACS transforming its scheduling process and focusing on what matters, its students.
Melbourne, Australia

In the bustling city of Melbourne, Australia, the Association of CO-Educational Schools (ACS) has played a crucial role in coordinating inter-school sports programs for over 10,000+ students across seven schools. 

Apart from an engaging sports program, the ACS is committed to teaching its students teamwork while helping them develop qualities of fair play, courage, graciousness, and resilience.

Michelle Sheehan, the Executive Officer of ACS, is the driving force behind this massive operation. With 23 years of experience in her role, she knows the importance of efficient operations and communication in managing a complex program while ensuring students are fully engaged.

This article delves into Michelle's challenges and how Diamond Scheduler became the game-changer that saved ACS countless hours and streamlined its sports scheduling process.

Association of Coeducational Schools (ACS) photo 1

Via Association of Coeducational Schools (ACS) 

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The challenge: Manually creating a schedule for 7 schools across 17 different sports

Managing inter-school sports programs involving seven different schools is no small feat. Michelle's typical day involves checking schedules and ensuring venues are correct while handling inquiries, the website, and social media updates. 

Michelle also coordinates with her team to check that sports photographers go to the correct venues, verify umpire assignments, and track game scores. 

These are small moving parts compared to ACS's mission, instilling solid values of teamwork and respect for the game, opponents, and umpires into developing student-athletes.

Orchasting these various activities is one thing; however, adding these responsibilities to manually creating a schedule for seven schools across 17 different sports is no small undertaking.

Michelle needed some assistance with scheduling as the manual creation of schedules would take up to 5 weeks, valuable time that could be redirected to further advancing ACS's mission.

The challenge for Michelle and ACS was clear. First, they had to find professional scheduling software to tackle their complex scheduling needs. The second challenge was to keep students engaged in sports and open more avenues for students to explore

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The solution: Diamond Scheduler, a scheduling software recommended by sports professionals 

The responsibilities of managing a large program and orchestrating the manual process of creating a fair, balanced schedule pushed Michelle to find an immediate solution. She explored various options, including an expensive firm used by major sports organizations, such as the NFL, MLB, and AFL (Australian Football League). 

“I contacted a scheduling firm that was doing the scheduling for the AFL and many major sports organizations,” said Michelle. “I asked them if they could help us, and they said they didn’t have the time because they were working with these major national bodies. So I said, ‘Can you suggest somebody else where we could get some assistance?’ And they sent us straight to Diamond Scheduler, and the rest is history. “

Diamond Scheduler stood out for several reasons. It offered functionality that met ACS's needs, and a demo copy allowed Michelle to get hands-on experience. 

“Once I researched Diamond Scheduler,” explained Michelle, “It was a no-brainer. I downloaded the demo copy and started playing around with the software. Once I worked my way and learned how to use it, there was no going back.”

John Hall, the developer of Diamond Scheduler, provided invaluable assistance in setting up the software, making it an attractive and user-friendly option.

Association of Coeducational Schools (ACS) photo 2

Via Association of Coeducational Schools (ACS) 

The result: Hundreds of hours were saved while cutting half of the scheduling process

The decision to implement Diamond Scheduler had a profound impact on ACS. The scheduling process, which once took almost five weeks, was now reduced to three weeks. The ease of plugging in schedule changes and the software's ability to handle constraints were game-changers.

“Before Diamond Scheduler, we were creating schedules manually by using spreadsheets. So I desperately sought something, an alternative, and along came Diamond Scheduler.”

Not only did Diamond Scheduler save time, but it also improved the overall quality of the scheduling. Michelle explains, "Diamond Scheduler has saved us hundreds and hundreds of hours. In the past, I would probably spend four or five weeks almost full-time doing fixtures (schedules). 

“Now, I can get it down to three weeks. And I'm able to do amendments to fixtures a lot faster with Diamond Scheduler. All I have to do is plug it in, and the change is virtually instant.”

With ACS serving seven different schools, constraints and venue options are a must to ensure the program runs smoothly. More importantly, Michelle can utilize the hours saved to improve their program and analyze what sports students enjoy and would like to add to the program.

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“One of the key things for us is the constraints component; utilizing this is a game changer,” says Michelle. “Manually managing this was a nightmare in the past, but now Diamond Scheduler being able to absorb all those constraints we have in the school system has made the whole process so much easier.”

By automating various aspects of the scheduling process, Diamond Scheduler has allowed ACS to allocate its time and resources to student engagement and promote the values that underpin its sports programs. 

The Association of CO-Educational Schools faced the daunting task of manually scheduling complex inter-school sports programs while ensuring other operations ran smoothly. 

Diamond Scheduler emerged as a reliable and efficient solution, saving them countless hours and enhancing the quality of their sports scheduling. 

As Michelle Sheehan and ACS continue to prioritize values and student engagement, Diamond Scheduler remains a valuable ally in their mission to promote sports and teamwork among students in Melbourne, Australia.

Deidra Hunter is a former athlete that now thrives as a content marketer and brand strategist. Her passion for sports has enabled her to contribute to diverse branding, content creation, and writing projects. In her downtime, she engages in lively discussions about sports and business with her friends and family.

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