Customer Story

Alteryx Plays Key Role in New Stadium Data Strategy for Texas Rangers

 

Successful sports organizations know that data analytics holds the key to creating great fan experiences. With a new stadium coming, the Texas Rangers business operations team sought help from consulting firm Resultant to shift its data strategy. Resultant helped them implement Alteryx to enable accurate stadium operations predictions and real-time updates on everything from where people park to which concession location sells the most nachos—all in the name of giving fans a game day experience that will keep them coming back, season after season.

 

When systems aren’t scalable, analytics can create extra work

The Rangers’ business operations team gathered and analyzed data to inform their decisions for a full five years before the new stadium came on the horizon. That data came from disparate sources that didn’t always have consistent updates, which made analysis time consuming and not completely accurate.

The coming state-of-the-art stadium would produce data from categories that didn’t exist in the old one—everything from which entrance fans favored down to how many paper towels were left in which restroom. The team knew their existing systems and the manual processes required to use them weren’t equipped to handle the massive amounts of new data in their future.

 

Shifting to make data analytics do the heavy lifting

The Rangers needed to support their new stadium operations with a robust, scalable data analytics environment. Their small and mighty team sought outside expertise from Resultant to make it happen.

“We needed guidance to be able to think about the future,” said Texas Rangers Business Operations Analytics Systems Manager Machelle Noel. “Bringing in Resultant to help us do that was a no-brainer because of our existing excellent working relationship.”

Noel and her team were particularly intrigued about integrating Alteryx into a data strategy that provided:

  • A foundation for growth
  • Scalable systems
  • Real-time access to data
  • One single source of truth
  • Automation of manual processes
  • An executable roadmap, budget, and action plan
  • A deadline of systems fully functional by the MLB season opener

Resultant knew Alteryx would also meet the Rangers’ data analytics team’s needs for a low code/no code solution. It enables complex data analytics with extraordinarily user-friendly interfaces. And because Alteryx’s tools are self-documenting, sharing and collaborating on workflows is seamless.

 

I love introducing Alteryx to organizations because it's the most flexible BI tool on the market. It's low-code/no-code, self-documenting, and easy enough for general business admins to automate many of their data wrangling processes.

Brian Vinson

Resultant Client Success Leader

 

A strategic data assessment provides insight

To help the Rangers develop a plan to scale and implement a data and analytics solution, Resultant first performed a strategic data assessment (SDA). An SDA helps us systematically and thoroughly evaluate data challenges and areas of the organization to make a more impactful transformation, including:

  • People and processes
  • Data models and structures
  • Data architecture and platforms
  • Visual analytics and reporting
  • Advanced analytics

Upon completion of the assessment, Resultant presented a detailed report to the business operations team with the following recommendations:

 

Infrastructure

A cloud migration didn’t make sense when the new stadium had a brand-new, state-of-the-art, on-prem infrastructure that would handle the Rangers’ needs beautifully when everything connected to it was optimized. Resultant helped the Texas Rangers implement Alteryx Designer and Alteryx Server to extract data from their various cloud applications via APIs to load the data into their on-prem infrastructure.

 

Modern data architecture and structure

New, modern data architecture and structure would meet major increases in volume and types of data to capture, process, and store data in an efficient, effective manner, ensuring scalability for future growth—a priority Resultant has for all their clients.

 

Data lakes

Resultant implemented Alteryx Designer and Alteryx Server so the team now has a data lake to provide stakeholders a better way to manage data reliability, accuracy, and timeliness while ensuring streamlined access.

 

Manual process automation

Streamlining and automating the majority of the Rangers game day operations processes with Alteryx has facilitated faster data analysis and allows for near real-time reporting on parking, ticket scans, concession sales, and retail volume—and opens up scaling capabilities for the future.

 

Comprehensive roadmap

A comprehensive roadmap, project plan, and budget co-developed between Resultant and the business operations team with in-depth knowledge of their objectives and constraints enabled them to articulate success criteria, outline a feasible multi-year investment schedule, and get executive buy-in for the initiative.

 

Hitting curveballs out of the park

2020 brought many more curveballs than normal for all of us, and the meticulously planned activities around the inaugural season of Globe Life Field came to a screeching halt with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yet, because Noel’s team had done excellent work building the data foundation, business operations pivoted to make the most of an unprecedented situation. While the stadium wasn’t being used for its original intent, they were still able to conduct tours and other smaller-scale events. Data from those and other operations led to season ticket sales, DoppleRanger sales, and foundation donations. And, when a little event called the 2020 World Series rolled around and the stadium was allowed to host fans at 25% capacity, the Rangers’ business operations team was well prepared to welcome them.

 

Where Alteryx made a big impact

One of the more challenging aspects of operations data in baseball specifically is that baseball isn’t a timed sport. Not only does an analytics approach need to find reference points that are related to game happenings rather than time, but the fact that the game ends whenever it ends made for some long nights generating end-of-game reports in the old stadium. The manual processes because of disparate data systems could stretch report generation out all through the night.

Today, not only does that report generate automatically within an hour of game completion, but near-real-time updates are generated and shared while the game is happening.

The solutions from Resultant and Alteryx provide insights to maximize revenue and build a better fan experience. The operations team can define which parts of the stadium are busiest depending on what’s happening in the game and better distribute staff, promotional items, and concessions resources. Instances staff want to address quickly like spill cleanup, broken seats, and medical assistance now have their own metrics and visualizations so employees can view hotspots and improve response times. Now with self-service, the operations team can see accurate, near-real-time updates on everything from the second-bestselling hat to which soft drink fans prefer at which concession stand to how many hot dogs are sold per minute.

 

Resultant helps Rangers build a data-driven culture with Alteryx

After the presentation of the first Globe Life Field end-of-game report to executives, the team owners asked to be included in the distribution. Since then, other departments have approached business operations for assistance with their own data initiatives, and the team is happy to help. That’s only possible because of the efficiency created with solutions from Alteryx and Resultant and the reduced time burden of end-of-game reporting.

The Texas Rangers’ business operations team has led by example to build a data-driven culture and opened a world of possibilities for their organization through building a solid foundation for their data strategy and continually asking what else is possible.

 

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