Park District selects IT consultant to assist with reviewing registration software vendors

  • Wagner  Community Center, Elmhurst, Illinois

In June, the Park District made the decision to hire an outside IT consultant to assist with reviewing and selecting a high performing registration software. After reviewing submitted proposals, the District has concluded that Noventech, Inc., a firm based out of Lombard, Illinois, is best suited to meet the District’s needs. Noventech’s experience working with small and medium-sized businesses and, most importantly, their familiarity with registration software systems utilized in the park district industry, were important determining factors in the decision. Staff anticipates beginning work with Noventech the first week of August with the goal of presenting a proposal to the Park Board in September. Should they recommend a different software solution, the timeframe for switching is approximately 18 months.

The District’s current software provider, Vermont Systems, Inc. (VSI), has been used since December 2015. Software glitches during registration in 2016 and again in February 2018, led the Park Board and staff to complete an extensive assessment of the software at that time, resulting in moving to a cloud hosted solution with VSI and splitting out high demand programs. Following these changes, the Park District had 14 consecutive registrations without issues.

However, following the pandemic and after two years of lower than normal registration numbers, the Park District experienced a huge increase in registrants in February 2022. Unfortunately, the high volume of traffic caused the software system issues to return, with customers experiencing unacceptable delays and errors while trying to register. Following spring registration, the District has worked with VSI to make improvements to the software, including implementing duplicate login alerts as well as a virtual waiting room feature to manage high volume events. The District also chose to separate gymnastics registration to reduce traffic volume on the day of registration.

Fall registration will be held on Saturday, July 30 at 8 am for gymnastics, Saturday, August 6 at 8 am for general fall programs, and Tuesday, August 9 at 8 am for non-residents.