A successfully executed evaluation requires a great deal of planning and organization. Often, the high level details are forgotten as the small tasks of the day add up. Here are our high level planning and execution tips for athlete evaluations.
Step 1- Administration/General Planning
The first step to run a successful evaluation should be an internal planning meeting. This meeting should be held a few months prior to the evaluation taking place and host all those that will be involved in the event. This group will likely be made up of people who have been doing this for years, as well as new participants. This diversity will provide an excellent space to debrief the previous year and brainstorm ideas for the future.
This opportunity should be used to discuss new processes, locations, or even technologies. The organization should look into using an athlete evaluation software and understand the benefits that it would give to the group. Arrange a web demonstration with the software company, and be sure to schedule it for a day where all applicable people can join in.
This meeting should allow all members of the group to leave feeling organized and confident about moving forward into the event
Step 2- Coach Specific Planning
All those involved in on-field execution of the event should have a separate planning meeting. It is important to map out what the tryout will look like from a coaching perspective.
This planning session should include selecting which drills to run, mapping out timelines to understand if there is enough time at each station or within each drill to evaluate the athletes, and creating a list of equipment that is needed. A good evaluation evaluation will have enough time for all the main skills to be tested.
At this stage in planning it is important to decide what role evaluators will play. Decide who they will be, where they will observe and score from, and how they will be scoring athletes. An athlete evaluation software can help to eliminate bias, and also remove all data entry from the process
This meeting should allow coaches to walk away feeling confident with what will take place on the field on the day of the evaluation.
Step 3- Administration Execution
As evaluations get closer, it is important to execute on registration and sign up tasks. This will usually include setting up registrations for the season and communicating with athletic participants. We recommend reaching out to all participants leading up to the event with a reminder of things to bring, location, and any specific information you wish to include.
After registration deadline has passed, it is time to get the athletes loaded into the system for the evaluation process. A good athlete evaluation software should allow you to easily add hundreds of athletes into the system. Additionally, there should be the capabilities for "walk up" athletes to be added, as this inevitably happens at every event.
On the day of, the small things are what makes the administration side of an evaluation succeed. Location of registration in the event space, ample staff to help with sign in and jersey distribution, and enough bodies around to help direct traffic and show participants where to go.
It is go time.
Step 4- Coach Execution
The day of an event can be incredibly busy for a coach, but it is important to remember that there was lots of time and effort put into planning to ensure that things would be executed well.
Before athletes arrive spend some time with the evaluators ensuring they are ready to go, set out any last minute equipment, and check in to make sure that all is well at the registration table.
Once on the field, run athletes through warm-up drills and stretches. Not only will the warm up and stretching warm up the athletes slowly by increasing the breathing rate, it also provides a great opportunity to get to know the personalities of the athletes before the day gets started.
Step 5- The Aftermath
Whether your evaluation event extends over many weeks, a weekend, or even just a day, there are many things that take place after the event are complete. With an evaluation software, data entry will be completely eliminated. Because reports are automatically generated and data can be viewed instantly, coaches can get straight to sorting groups for the next day, or creating teams for the season. By eliminating the data entry process of the event, "the aftermath" stage becomes significantly more manageable.
Communication with athletes and parents after an event is important. An athlete evaluation software will allow you to provide instant professional reports to participants.
Once a tryout is wrapped up, it is recommended to debrief with the organizing crew and make immediate notes to be discussed leading up to next years event.
As you can see, an athlete evaluation app can help with any upcoming soccer tryout and will alleviate a great deal of work from the organizing crew.
SkillShark has made it accessible and affordable for business and organizations to use this software. Priced at $3/Athlete/Year, we are the most affordable program on the market. Head here to create a free account to get started! We always offer a trial of 30 players so that groups can confirm it will work for them.
That's all for now!