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Previous Updates


The IT Transformation Project (ITTP) officially launched in mid-January 2016 starting with the Discovery Phase, this ran across the next two months and below you will find the lastest update along with previous details listed below:

February 2018

General Project

Following a meeting between representatives of the Board of Directors and Makepositive prior to Christmas there has been a change to the order in which the project will be delivered.

Release 4 (the website) will be prioritised over Release 2 (Entries, Admin, Results and Scoring (EARS)). This will deliver the bulk of the project this summer giving greater benefit to all members and enable us to deliver the EARS system ensuring that it is fully fit for purpose.

Release 1 (database) is fully in use internally and is awaiting the final Release 4 (Website) before it is fully functional without the need for the additional syncing process.

Release 1A – the Entry Validations, and Release 3 (Training and Education system) are completed with the exception of the final part, which is again the interface to the new website. Release 3A (Risk Management data input from events) is fully functional and has been used last season by the Technical Advisers.

Next steps:

Release 4 (Website) will now be prioritised to enable the functionality behind Release 1, 1A and 3 - referred to above - to be fully activated and to enable members to start using the new website this summer. When the Website (Release 4) goes ‘live' this will demonstrate the delivery of the core IT Project. Once this is completed the legacy database will be able to be turned off.

Members will continue to enter using the current entry platforms over 2018, namely BE and BDWP, and Organisers and their Entries Secretaries will continue to use the existing entries administrations systems in conjunction with their chosen entries system.

Release 2 (EARS) will continue to be developed over 2018 and 2019 with the intent of being in main stream use in 2020. However the main priority will be Release 4 until the new website is live. Then work on Release 2 will resume priority with the goal of having the field testing in Quarter 3.

This reprioritisation and refocus will see the delivery of the core IT project by the summer.

October 2017

Further to the AGM held at Osberton International Horse Trials on the 29th September below is a more detailed update based on what was provided at the AGM:

General Project

There has been slippage to timelines for the delivery of Release 2 (EARS) and Release 4 (Website) – principally due to additional work needed to refine of the user experience and functionality of the EARS system. This additional work will ensure that we have a fully functioning Scoring and Timetabling system ready for full end to end testing by the Scorers Working Group. This slippage has not in itself impacted on project costs but we are currently in discussion with Makepositive around some of the change requests* needed to improve the user experience.

A British Event Organisers Association (BEOA) IT working group conference call was held on the 20th September with the next call planned for October.

Release 1: The CRM database - this has now transitioned to Managed Services and work is underway to provide a robust Business Intelligence environment for current and future reporting requirements. We're still maintaining a synchronisation link to the old BE system which is important since the website still uses this data and will continue to do so until the new website (R4) is live.

Release 1a: Validations - Makepositive resource has now been rolled off R1a, and will restart again as part of R4 (website) testing and deployment. Internal BE activities remain to complete all validation testing. Plans to be finalised once Release 2 and Release 4 challenges have been overcome.

Release 2: Entries, Admin, Results and Scoring - As previously stated the EARS system will be mandated to BE events in 2020, initial testing of the system is taking place this year, and will continue to do so into the next season before its launch.

Once the development work on the current change requests has been finished and the system testing is complete, the Scorers Working Group will be involved in full end to end testing. This part of the plan has three phases – firstly basic system testing to identify bugs using both live and dummy data, then scenario testing to ensure that the system functions well for all the various scenarios identified by entries secretaries and scorers and then finally parallel field testing at selected events. Due to the delays caused by the need for the changes to the system we will not be ready for the final phase of testing until the season begins in 2018. Depending on how this field testing goes will depend on when the system is ready for roll out to events.

Our internal Salesforce analyst has attended a number of events undertaking testing of the scoring and timetabling part of EARS and the bugs that she picks up are then fed back to Makepositive for fixing. This is the initial stage of testing and is not parallel testing – which will take place when we undertake the field testing as mentioned above.

Release 3: Training and Risk Management - The Safety Data input application is now in use by all Technical Advisers. The Training & Education system work has been completed and further testing will restart as part of R4.

Release 4: Website - The R4 user scope document has been shared for review and approval and internal IT review sessions will shortly take place. Makepositive are currently unable to confirm R4 development timelines until this work has been completed.

*change request = a call for an adjustment to the system

The ITTP opportunities

Just a reminder to members of some of the principal reasons why we are undertaking this project:

The current legacy system costs in the region of £200k per year to maintain and is constantly creating challenges when for example there are changes to rules where a great deal of rewriting of code has to be undertaken. The cost of maintaining an old legacy code base is further compounded by the ongoing costs of expensive internal infrastructure and software licenses.

The new systems are all based on the leading cloud based CRM system, Salesforce. This will give us a system that is far more futureproof – For Example, new features are introduced to the platform three times a year. Most recently Artificial Intelligence features have been added to help in predicting trends in large data sets, something BE would never have the budget to introduce into an old legacy system.

Salesforce is a cross platform solution and built to work where ever it's needed. As working practices change and mobile technology becomes ever more important, we are well positioned to ensure BE systems can take advantage of those changes.

It will be easier for members to access information and to update their own information through the website and other routes such as social media. The new website design and additional features based on a Salesforce platform will allow members to interact with BE in a way that suits them, at a time that suits them, on a device that suits them.

Much of the modifications made to enable BE's unique business processes to run on the Salesforce system are configuration changes, rather than coding changes. This means we can react much more quickly to changes in business process in the future, often without the need for expensive development resource.

Commercially the new system will open up far greater opportunities such as advertising – not only through the website but also other digital platforms – which will therefore reduce the net cost of maintaining salesforce. Salesforce continue to add new products to their portfolio, for example they already have features that offer deep integration with marketing automation solutions and social media integration.

10th May 2017

Following the last board meeting 12th April 2017, increased project spend and timelines presented by project steering were approved. These are for some change requests relating to the Entries Administration Results and Scoring, or EARS, system (Release 2) which will improve the ease of use for scorers and entry secretaries.

British Eventing Organisers Association (BEOA) IT working group conference call was held on the 27th April to update them on progress and to share our plan for the presentation after the BEOA AGM at Badminton.

Release 1 (CRM database): has transitioned to Managed Services support now and our next priority is for BE IT team to complete data cleansing in both systems – the existing database and the new Salesforce database. There are still some bugs being detected however the number and frequency are diminishing significantly.

Release 2 and 3: Following the approval of the Release 2 Change Requests, Makepositive are now working on the changes. A follow on workshop will be set up soon with the EARS Working Group.

The EARS system will be mandated to BE Events in 2020 however it is very much hoped that following the trial this year and launch at events using the BE system next year most events will migrate towards using the system prior to 2020.

The EARS trial planning actions are now in progress. The aim is that this will go ahead after User Acceptance Tests (UAT) have been completed towards the end of July. August to the end of the season will be used for field trialling at selected events – we will be working with the EARS Working Group and Organisers to agree this plan which will need to take into account the varying complexity of events. The trial will run alongside of the events scoring team so as not to create challenges. During the trial periods of time will be factored in to allow bugs detected to be fixed before the next phase of trialling.

There will be extensive training for Scorers and Entries Secretaries before the start of next season on how to use the EARS system.

User scope documents are being reviewed for Release 3 (Safety and Training & Education). The Safety application used by Technical Advisers (TA) for all BE Events has been prioritised within this release and TAs will receive training shortly on how to use this.

Release 4 (website): is currently on hold and development will restart again once Releases 2 - 3 have completed. The user scope document for the new website is currently in progress, planned to complete by the end of May.



Update: 1st March 2017


CRM (database – Release 1): It has been little over two months since our new CRM database went live. Many of the bugs have been resolved but we are aware that some members are still experiencing some issues. We thank you all for your continued patience and the teams, both internally and our developers Make Positive, are working to resolve the few remaining bugs.

EARS. (Release 2): Our plan is to field test the EARS system this season at a number of events of varying levels and complexities. . We will field test alongside of the system being used to run the event so as not to impact on the event in any way. Nearer that time we will agree a timetable of field testing.


We have not yet decided which events will be used – this will clearer when we are sure that the system is ready for field testing.

We are currently working with a group which consists of Wendy Evans, Belinda Thompson, Sue Thompson, Tanya Adamson, Miranda Collett – all scorers and entries secretaries.


During the most recent EARS workshop of (Friday 2 February) the key points of focus are timetabling and scoring – and getting a system in place using Salesforce which matches current requirements – one of the key issues being for example how to deal with multiple riders in the most efficient way possible and also the challenges around connectivity. We will be working closely with this working group going forward to create a suitable platform ready for initial trialling.


Following a successful trial we plan to roll out the system in 2018 to those events that would like to use it.


Entries secretaries will receive training and we will be looking at creating a resource for this – working together with the Entries Secretaries.


Website (Release 4): The BE team have been feeding back on the design and user journey of the website and will begin the task of populating it with content and testing ahead of the launch later in 2017. We will be using a lot of the work that has been done previously on the website (there were a number of workshops a couple of years ago when the previous plan for the website was underway).


We thank you all for your continued support, patience and understanding during the project.


The benefits that our new solution will bring to the sport – both in the short and the long term are enormous. There is an exciting future ahead that this project enables for the sport and its members. Thank you to everyone who is working with us to ensure that we can realise and optimise these benefits.



Update: 2 February 2017


Our new CRM system went live in December, we wish to thank all our members for being patient during the migration of the new system from the old one. Not unusually with big IT projects, we did encounter some bugs which regrettably has impacted on members especially with the collection of direct debits and some horse registrations. The Membership team have been working especially hard to answer questions and help with challenges that members have had with the implementation of the new system.


Whilst we are working together with makepositive (the provider) to address these challenges, work continues with Releases Two, Three (Entries, Admin, Results and Scoring (EARS) and Training and Education) and Four (website). Our plan remains to field test the EARS system this season at a number of events of varying levels and complexities. The team have been feeding back on the design and user journey of the website and will begin the task of populating it with content and testing in February ahead of the launch later in 2017.


We thank you all for your continued support, patience and understanding during the project and apologise for any inconveniences that may arise.


The benefits that Salesforce will bring to the sport, both in the short and long term, are enormous. There is an exciting future ahead that this project enables for the sport and the members. Thank you to everyone who is working with us to ensure that we can realise and optimise these benefits.


Update: 2nd December 2016

Please note that due to updates to our new IT system, Associate Registration, Membership purchase, Equine Registrations and updating details via the website or over the phone will be unavailable from Midday on Friday 2nd December until Monday 5th December 2016.

Along with this, purchasing Horse Season Passes for 2017 will not open until 9th January 2017, once the update has been completed on Monday 5th December horses can still be registered before this time but Season Passes will not be available until January.

If you have a membership or horse registration request during this time please email

From Monday 5th BE will be using their new Salesforce database and whilst everything has been done to ensure a smooth and easy transition we ask that you bear with us during this time as we make this change.

This is part of the IT Transformation Project, of which we are heading into the final stages of Phase One, our Head Office staff have undergone training for the new Customer Relationship Management system, or ‘database', and development continues on Release Two and Three.

Release Two and Three is the Entry, Administration, Results and Scoring system (EARS), which will begin testing and further training on in the early part of 2017 along with the work being carried out on Release Four, the website. The team have been feeding back on the design and user journey of the website and will begin the task of populating it with content and testing in the New Year ahead of the launch later in 2017.

As with all projects, especially of this size and complexity, challenging yet exciting times ahead. The project team have worked extremely hard in getting to where we are, and with the support from the team and our members we hope for this to be a fantastic achievement for all involved with British Eventing, and more importantly for the sport.

We thank you all for your continued support, patience and understanding during the project and apologise for any inconveniences that may arise.


Update: 13 October 2016

Following a recent Board meeting we bring you an update on the IT Transformation Project. Previous updates from the 14th April and 20th June can be found here.
The project governance team – IT Steering Group (monthly meetings), Project Board (weekly meetings) and Project Manager, continue to work hard to ensure that the project remains on target in terms of timelines and cost.

All releases are now in progress, with the project now moving full steam ahead.


  • Release 1 - by November 2016 – Database - Membership function, Head office staff.
  • Release 2 & 3 - by March 2017 – Entries, Admin, Results and Scoring (EARS) system, Training & Education, and BE Event Officials.
  • Release 4 - by May 2017 - BE Website.

Implementation Highlights (by Release)

Release 1 
We have successfully completed development of the CRM database. A number of demonstrations have taken place with business users to validate functionality being developed. October weeks will be geared towards the start training and business testing. We are aiming for the CRM system to be live by the end of November this year. In launching CRM first we hope to have our core structure in-place, we can then continue to develop the system as the implementation progresses.


Releases 2 & 3 
We recently started development of the EARS system. Development will continue into the early part of next year at which point we move into testing and training, ready to launch the system in March for trialing throughout the 2017 season. A two day Entries and Scoring workshop took place with some scorers and entries secretaries. Scorers are now involved in the Project Team for the EARS system.


Release 4
The fourth and final release completing the implementation is the website. The reason behind implementing the website last was to ensure we had a solid framework in place, ready to plug in the final piece of the jigsaw with our new Website. We started development of the website at the end of September. We hope to complete all development by next year giving us sufficient time after the three releases are fully embedded, to test the website, preparing plans to launch by May 2017.



As with all projects, especially of this size and complexity, challenging yet exciting times ahead, the project team have worked extremely hard in getting to where we are today, and with the continued support from the team and yourselves we hope for this to be a fantastic achievement for British Eventing, and more importantly for the sport and all involved.


Update: 20 June 2016


British Eventing can now provide the following information on the IT Transformation Project:


BE are pleased to announce the Discovery Phase of the project concluded towards the end of March 2016 as planned, this is where ‘makepositive', the Project Manager, our Team and all the various stakeholders involved, took part in a series of workshops in order to scope out the specific details of the project.


Since then ‘makepositive' have shared the plans, timelines and costs for delivery of the Implementation Phase of the project to the BE IT Steering Group. Following this, the BE IT Steering Group presented the Implementation Plan to the Board of British Eventing which they have accepted.


The Discovery Phase looked in detail at the complexities both of the website and of the Entries, Administration, Scoring and Results (EARS) elements of the project and as a result there are some changes to the indicative timelines and costs. The increase in timelines enables a staged implementation which will reduce risks going forward.


In early June the BE Board signed off the contract, which includes the timelines for the project and the business plan to support BE's investment in this important piece of work, so now the project is fully underway. The first key part of the work will be on the database;


Next Steps


In the coming months we will be working extensively with all the various stakeholders, many of whom were already involved in the Discovery Phase, to start pulling the new system together.


These are the three core elements of the project:


  • The database – all the data we have and need to run the sport; People, horses, results - this is also known as the Customer Relationship Management system (CRM)
  • The website
  • The event focused element - Entries, Administration, Scoring and Results - known as EARS


It is planned to have the database element ready for the start of 2017 along with the EARS system, at which point the EARS pilot will commence, and then the development and delivery of the website will occur subsequently to these two key stages.


The cost of the project has increased marginally in line with the extension to the time-frame for delivery and final delivery will take place next year, however the project is structured in such a way that BE will regularly see progress via our involvement in testing throughout the course of the implementation. We will keep our members up to date on the development of the project as it progresses.



Update: 15 February 2016 


Why are we doing it and what will change?


Since the last update at the AGM in October 2015 on the progress of the ITTP last year we have continued to move the process forward. During the final quarter of last year we completed a detail and thorough review to select the most effective and appropriate platform for BE to develop the IT Strategy going forward. Some of the key components that were considered were: 


  • A system that would be future proof, that would meet the needs of the sport not just now but also over the next 10 years.
  • Would enable us to budget effectively for IT costs.
  • Enable efficiencies of working and costs.
  • Keep up with innovation, increasing use of mobile devices/Apps etc.

The three elements of the system are:

  • The database – all the data we have and need to run the sport; People, horses, results - this is also known as the Customer Relationship Management system (CRM).
  • The website.
  • The event focused element; Entries, Administration, Scoring and Results - known as EARS.

The first part of the project was to work out which system would be able to deliver the three key elements whilst satisfying the needs of the sport going forwards over the next 10 years. After a great deal of research looking at the various systems available the IT Working Group decided on Salesforce as the ideal platform to meet our needs.


The next challenge was to find a provider with whom we could work to deliver Salesforce for us – we went out to market for this and finally decided on makepositive. The last vitally important part of the jigsaw is the Project Manager;  a person to work with BE, the provider and all our stakeholders in order to manage the project and, after an extensive search, we welcome Nisha Punj to this role.



Current progress


The project started mid-January and the first phase is what is known as the Discovery phase – this is where makepositive, the Project Manager, our Team and all the various stakeholders involved in and impacted by the project, i.e. scorers, organisers, etc. are involved in a series of workshops in order to tease out the detail of the specifications of the project.

These specifications were created last year and were the basis on which providers tendered for the project, however we still need to drill down into these to ensure that they are still appropriate, and also, more importantly, this will then enable makepositive to decide what is the most effective way to deliver the project and to know what element has to be done first and in what order all the elements should be delivered. This will also entail testing the various elements as we go through.

Next Steps

The Discovery Phase will conclude towards the end of March 2016 at which point makepositive will then discuss with our IT Steering Group what their findings are and what the plans are for delivery – and most importantly what the detailed costs will be. Up until now we are only paying makepositive for the Discovery Phase after which the outline budget for the Implementation Phase can be refined.

The planned end date of the project is the end of this year and we will aim to provide a similar brief once we have a clear picture of the Implementation Phase.