The successful celebrations to regain their place in the second Bundesliga and the official start of the season in the 19/20 season around the Bremer Brücke bridge are still reverberating, but now it's serious for the VfL Osnabrück team. The first matches have been played, the team has arrived in the second Bundesliga. But not only for the professional team is a new chapter in the club's history begins, also in the office has been done in recent years: A new economic and organizational setup, professional structures and the modernization of IT were the focus of recent years.
It is easily underestimated how extensive the IT solutions required for a professional football club in the second Bundesliga are. In addition to the salaried staff and players, there are over a hundred volunteers for various tasks and at various locations. Day-to-day business requires a great deal of planning, for example for training equipment, seat occupancy or away games. There is a lively exchange of data with the German Football Association (DFB) and the other league clubs - for example, squad lists, player photos and other background information for fan communication in the stadium are exchanged before the matches. Data security and protection, including against cybercrime, are always at the top of the priority list.
"Top performance on the pitch is only possible with top performance in the processes behind the scenes," says Jürgen Wehlend, Managing Director of VfL Osnabrück. "The smooth communication and cooperation of all parties involved - even when on the road, for example during away appointments - form the basis for this. We need modern and flexible IT solutions that optimally network and support us. At the same time, we need to keep an eye on our IT budget."
In order to be able to put IT on a secure footing, the association looked for a partner at eye level and found him in the Osnabrück IT company TSO-DATA, which has supported the association for many years as a sponsor. For more than four years now, TSO-DATA has been looking after the association's IT like its own. With a view to future security, the project managers decided to use Microsoft Office 365. This means that the required programs are available on all common end devices, every employee can always access the latest file versions and, for example, coordinate and manage appointments and resources via a common calendar. The solution is also financially attractive: Office 365 does not require high initial investments. There are only monthly usage fees, which are based on current requirements.
Today, Exchange Online, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online ensure smooth data exchange and communication between trainers, team managers, permanent and several hundred volunteers. For example, match days are also analyzed via conference calls with the professionals - whether from the training facilities, on the road during the away game or from home. "Communication is more flexible and faster," explains Wehlend. "This has greatly simplified our work."
VfL Osnabrück's IT infrastructure was outdated and the budget for modernisation was limited. Jürgen Wehlend, Managing Director of VfL Osnabrück, and Dirk Frommeyer, Managing Director of Microsoft partner TSO-DATA GmbH, explain how VfL is using Office 365 to create a powerful platform from the cloud that includes e-mail, team rooms and data exchange tools.
Since the 2015/2016 season TSO-DATA is the official IT partner of VfL Osnabrück. In this context the IT infrastructure of the club was also renewed and made "cloudfit". This change has not only proven itself in the current situation. Learn more about the project and the successful partnership in our exclusive interview with Jürgen Wehlend, the managing director of VfL.
After advancing to the second league, new requirements were added by the German Football League (DFL). In the future, the entire WLAN used for operational purposes in the stadium and in the office is to be renewed in order to be able to provide fast and secure network access options for business operations, the boxes and also - as prescribed by the DFL for the 2nd league - for media representatives.
"From our point of view, we are well positioned for the 2nd league and future-proof," says Uwe Langner, Head of IT Infrastructure at TSO-DATA. "We're keeping our fingers crossed for our team at the start of the season and are predicting a commanding victory.