ESSMA Summit 2024 - Programme & tickets 👉 Read more

Implementation of a new Venue Management system at Legia Warsaw

Krzysztof Szumowski - Matchday Director and Venue Manager at Legia Warsaw - explained the process Legia Warsaw went through to implement a new venue management system to help them improve matchday organisation during the ESSMA Summit in Porto.

Project goals and timeline

In 2018, Legia Warsaw decided to implement a new venue management system which would allow them to organise events more efficiently and improve the overall matchday experience. The main goals they set out at the start of this project were: 

  • To gather more information from their fanbase
  • To optimize communication
  • To create documentation as guidelines for matchday operations
  • To create an efficient system which would help them eliminate mistakes
  • Implement changes in the organisation 
  • Improve the organisation and overall matchday experience

The first step the club took was to organise meetings with team leaders of all departments to determine their degree of involvement in matchday operations. This was followed up by a thorough analysis of the venue and the normal way of preparing for matchdays. A new venue management system, with detailed planning for matchday operations, was created based on the input received during the analysis. 

Operational tools

The implementation of the new venue management system was accompanied by the introduction of some operational tools, which should also help make the organisation of events more efficient. 

Pre-matchday briefings were introduced and now take place one or two days before every match, while post-matchday debriefings take place two or three days after every match. The club also introduced:

  • matchday countdown schedule: Information of all matchday activities and information gathered from team leaders. 
  • A venue manager checklist: information related to the specific matchday. Like the anticipated attendance, the number of staff involved and the weather forecast.
  • A matchday operational plan: summary of the entire matchday operation with a detailed description of all operational areas and the tasks and responsibilities of all team leaders.

Tasks and responsibilities of a venue manager

The tasks and responsibilities of a venue manager, in Legia Warsaw’s new venue management system:

On matchdayOn non-matchday
  • Monitoring the operations and organization and keeping them on schedule
  • Collecting information about match operations
  • Facilitating communication between team leaders and Safety & Security Officers
  • Planning and leading pre- and post-matchday briefings
  • Implementing and updating matchday countdowns, checklists and operational plans
  • Providing organisational support
  • Facilitating internal communication
  • Predicting and avoiding operational problems

Main takeaways:

  • Consider hiring a Venue Manager to make your matchday operations more efficient
  • Look for solutions by observing best-practices
  • Try to look at the operation as a whole, seeing how all departments are linked
  • Use project management tools
  • Respect the role of the Safety and Security Officer, they are integral on matchdays
  • Measure your performances to know whether you’ve improved

Go to our ESSMA Flickr account for more pictures.

Access his presentation on the ESSMA Knowledge Platform