Now that many organizations are running Virtual Events, I thought it would be a good idea to list out some recommendations for successfully running virtual events. You know what's best for your organization, so don't view this list as required. CompetitionSuite operates the same way it always has, we just added a few additional features to make your life easier.
Switch Commentary Release to Manual Mode
In the commentary area, there is a toggle that allows you to switch Commentary Release to "Manual". This will prevent groups from accessing commentary until you are ready.
Why? Let's say you have 3 judges, one of the judges is a night owl and decides to do his judging at 3 AM. The other 2 judges are procrastinators and wait until the last day to do their judging. The groups would be notified that commentary is available at 3 AM with the first judge and you may get questions like "Where is my commentary from the other judges?". By using the "Commentary Release" feature, you get to decide when commentary is released to the groups. You're able to confirm that all of the commentary is in before you release it.
Quick Tip: While you can release each group individually, I'd recommend switching the Commentary Release mode to "Automatic" when you're ready to release it. No need to release every group individually.
You should set the event date to the date the scores and commentary will be released (the last day the judges should be judging).
Why? Judges have access to enter scores and record commentary through the day of the event. If you have the date of the event listed as before the judges need to have their judging complete, they won't be able to access the event in the app.
Submissions Close Date
Make sure the submission close date is a few days before the date of the event (see item above).
Why? Judges get access to the submissions at the submission close date. They will need time to view the submissions, record commentary, and enter their scores.
Two devices for Judges
Judges will need 2 devices when judging, one for viewing the submissions, one for entering scores and recording commentary.
Why? Phones and Tablets don't allow you to watch a video and record audio at the same time, so the judge will need to view the submission via the CompetitionSuite website and enter their scores/record commentary via the CompetitionSuite Judge app.
You can use the new "Release Group Summaries" option to release scores to the groups, but not the public. This will release the group summaries without releasing the scores to the public (via Bridge or Pages).
Why? Lots of organizations are utilizing ratings for virtual events and don't want those ratings being posted publicly. This allows you to release the summaries without the general public having access to the results.
You should still set up a mic test for the judges. They can record their test, then check their CompetitionSuite account to confirm their recording is coming through clearly. It's probably smart for judges to periodically check their recordings via the CompetitionSuite web site to make sure their recordings are good.
Why? There can still be microphone issues, even virtually. Having a mic test allows the judges to confirm they are being heard clearly and won't have to re-record their commentary.
Quick Tip: Competitions are allowed 1 mic test group and you aren't charged for this group. The group must have the word "test" in the name for the system to know it's a mic test group.