Even though not every golf course worldwide has the luxury problem of a start-up times that exceeds the supply: the duration of the golf season is not only an important factor in the possible yield of a golf course but plays an important role in the evaluation of the golfer’s experience by the players.
Probably every golfer knows this from their own experience: If a round of five or even six hours (as in Germany, especially in tournaments often hit), the fun of the round can be felt noticeably. In surveys, too, the time intensity of the golf game is often referred to as an obstacle to the choice of this sport. At the PGA show, several supplier solutions were presented this year to analyze and optimize the lap times. The South African company Tagmarshal with additional office in Las Vegas has already won some prestigious golf courses for its concept in the past months. CEO of the company is the German-born Bodo Sieber. The reference people include Whistling Straits, Forest Glen, The Links at Gateway and Erin Hills, venue of this year’s US Open. The goal of the company is to optimize the round-the-clock and support the Marshals of the clubs in their work. “Golfers usually have a defined time budget for their sport. If this is completely used up by the round, the golfers mostly forgo a visit to the restaurant or the Pro shop, “says Sieber. In other words, the shorter and the more rigorously maintained play times mean that the golf clubs have not only the chance to bring more golfers to the round, but also to make more sales with existing golfers within the area where they stay.
The required technique is comparatively simple: Each game group is given its own tracker, which is given either (if available) to the caddy or at each game group goes with a tracker on the round – with “Tagmarshal” the round times can be analyzed and if necessary, take action. to a player attached to the bag. Golf carts also have their own version. The trackers have their own Sim cards, which are used to communicate the ongoing measurements to a central server. “Extensive hardware installations on the system are not required with our system,” emphasizes Sieber. The question of how long a round should last is ultimately decided by the respective facility. Tagmarshal considers each individual path in its application, so that the clubs can precisely track which lanes, if any, lead to delays. This can then be the basis for the club’s measures to accelerate the game, for example, to mow the rough shorter or move the tea boxes. The evaluations of these measures can be measured and evaluated immediately. The Marshals – and, of course, the club management or the secretariat – also use tablets to identify the respective game times and possible delays against the target time per game group. “Most of the time, we also take on the specific data of the individual players from the clubs’ start-up systems so that in the medium term it becomes clear whether certain players or game groups are often slower than planned,” Sieber shows further possibilities.
However, the system not only shows the delays, but also analyzes them by means of its own algorithm – and Marshal or Club management automatically provides recommendations on the order in which the delayed game groups are to be taken care of. “Lastly, if there are several late game groups on the round, they have to balance each other carefully with regard to their impact on the overall system and to put them in a sequence of measures,” Sieber continued. Club management can also evaluate the data as daily statistics and per game track. Tagmarshal will also offer its system in Germany in the future, its own office here is not planned so far. The cost depends on the version used: The basic system is ideal for clubs where laps are usually completed on foot. It costs $ 490 per month, including 40 trackers. Clubs that typically use carts, the company recommends the premium version with additional features such as geofencing, VIP guest tracking, and Marshal Management for $ 690 per month. On request, there is also a purchase variant for the tracker. The training in the system is by video training; Currently this is usually carried out in English. “On the whole, we expect an average of six weeks’ advance, including training. We use about two weeks to calibrate the system, collect data and define the algorithms,” says Sieber. His previous customers were very satisfied with the impact of the system – the lap times were noticeably lowered and also the perception of the golfer’s experience by the players was noticeably increased. “In addition, it was shown that the clubs were able to reduce the number of marshals or their hours of service with our system, or that even the club secretariat was responsible for the delays of the customer. It is important to us, however, that the golfers are addressed about the problem in a personal communication and at best suggest solutions directly, “summarizes Sieber.