Conley created a credentials request form on Red Sox Central where requestors could describe their role (visitor, guest, partner), as well as which event or game they were attending, and where they needed to be in Fenway Park. Similar to the online form for tickets, this process had previously been very clunky, done manually using paper forms.
"When a requester submits the online form, it goes to one IT person. It's just simple process automation," says Conley.
Streamlining Player Fan Mail
The Red Sox are also using SharePoint to sort out the mountains of player fan mail that comes into the organization.
All snail mail is entered into SharePoint -- not scanned but entered -- in a hellish-sounding transcribing marathon done by interns. Conley did mention he is thinking about scanning the fan mail into SharePoint at some point. (But why not take advantage of those doe-eyed summer interns when you can?)
The mail is then catalogued and sent to players' e-mail inboxes where they can respond to them personally.
Solving the Invoice Pile Up
Handling bills and invoices has long been a sluggish process for the Red Sox and sometimes led to late payments. But Conley implemented an online invoice process in SharePoint that has made life easier.
Using SharePoint, Conley managed to automate all billing and integrate it with the Red Sox ERP system (Microsoft Dynamics SL) using a workflow-based approval process. Bills are scanned into SharePoint and then end up in an online queue where they can be coded, paid and processed and then pulled into the organization's ERP system.
"Our busiest time for ordering stuff is spring training when we are down in Fort Myers," says Conley. "When the invoicing was all done on paper, the bills would often bounce back and forth between Boston and Fort Myers before they got paid & and then we'd pay the late fee."
Now that bill payments are automated in SharePoint, late fees are like the Curse of the Bambino. A thing of the past.
Shane O'Neill covers Microsoft, Windows, Operating Systems, Productivity Apps and Online Services for CIO.com. Follow Shane on Twitter @smoneill. Follow everything from CIO.com on Twitter @CIOonline and on Facebook. Email Shane at firstname.lastname@example.org