Licensing digitalizes all steps in the recurring processes of issuance of association licenses, such as Club Licensing and Stadium Inspection. It includes the definition of license types and criteria, submission of evidence and application by clubs or inspectors, review and decision process, appeal, and issuance of license.
1. LICENSING PROCESS
1.1. Association Submission
Workflow is configured in accordance with the association’s preferences and existing rules and regulations. The Applicant enters data and evidence across all categories and submits the application to the Governing Body.
1.2. Expert Review
Licensing Expert is appointed to one or more Application Categories, e.g. Finance or Sporting. The expert reviews its assigned category, accepts or rejects evidence submitted by the Applicant, and makes a decision for the entire Category.
1.3. First Instance Decision
Based on the Experts’ reviews, the Governing Body makes the final decision reg. the Application. In some cases, the Governing Body defines the sub-license (e.g. License granted or License granted with a sanction).
1.4. Appeal Process
The Applicant may appeal the decision. A separate role, the Licensing Appeal Body, reviews applications that have been rejected by the Licensing Managers and Licensing Experts (First Instance Body Members) and makes the final/second instance decision.
1.5. License Issuance
Once the application has been confirmed, the License attached to this Application Type is automatically issued to the Applicant. Issued Licenses are visible on the Applicant’s profile (Club or Stadium) in COMET.
2. APPLICATION TYPES
2.1. Reusable Application Types
Application types are defined by the Licensing Administrator on the UI. The Application types can be cloned and reused in the upcoming seasons. They are defined in accordance with the Governing Body’s preferences, e.g. UEFA Club License, Tier 1, Tier 2, Club Accreditation, etc.
An application type is linked to a specific Organization that issues the license, such as continental confederations (UEFA, CONCACAF, CONMEBOL, OFC, CAF), and national associations.
2.3. Season and Validity
The validity of an Application Type is defined per Competition season. Season dates are adjusted on each specific Application type, and issued licenses are automatically assigned that pre-defined validity. Licenses are automatically deactivated on the last day of license validity.
3. CATEGORIES, CRITERIA AND EVIDENCE
3.1. Configurable Categories
Categories and criteria are defined on the Application Type by the Licensing Administrator. E.g. most common categories are: Sporting, Legal, Infrastructure, Financial, Personnel. The Licensing Administrator appoints Experts to one or more Application Categories.
3.2. Criteria under Categories
The Licensing Administrator defines the hierarchy for categories, criteria and evidence on the application type level. Each category has a different set of criteria that the club needs to meet. Examples of criteria are: Coaches, Club Staff, Social Media Accounts, Field of Play, Club budget, Club Statutes, etc.
3.3. Configurable Evidence Type
There are configurable evidence types within each criterion. Each one of them requires different action from the Applicant. Evidence Types are: Check (Yes/No), Single-line Text, Multiple-line Text, Document Upload, Date, Dropdown list of pre-defined options.
3.4. Automated Evidence
On top of standard evidence types, where data is entered/provided explicitly by the Applicant, the system also supports automated evidence, relating to data that is available in COMET. In this case, the Applicant does not need to enter data or upload any files. Instead, with one click, this evidence (e.g. list of licensed coaches in the club) will be generated from COMET, and saved under that specific application criterion.
3.5. Evidence Features
Licensing Administrator may mark some evidence as required and some as optional. The Applicant will not be able to submit the application without providing all the required evidence. Also, every evidence has its own status (Rejected/Confirmed) and a comment box for Licensing Expert’s feedback.
3.6. Cross-Application Evidence Reporting
The fact that the licensing process is digitalized and structured, enables quite useful analytical reporting across all applications. For example, by using COMET Data Reporting Platform, it is quite simple to extract and compare the yearly budgets of all clubs in a certain country.
4. IMPLEMENTATION SCENARIOS
The scope of the Club Licensing module is defined by the implementation scenarios, i.e. different process workflows that need to be implemented at the Governing Body. Below are the available implementation scenarios:
4.1. Club Licensing
In this default workflow, the application types/licenses relate to a club. Upon invitation, the Club responsible individual enters data and evidence-based on the predefined type and submits the application. The Governing Body reviews the application and makes the first instance decision regarding the outcome, which may be appealed and overruled on the second instance. The club license is issued automatically based on successful application outcome and is visible on the club profile.
4.2. Stadium Inspection
This workflow is separate from the club licensing process, and the application types/licenses relate to a stadium and not a club. The Stadium Inspector enters data and evidence-based on the inspection type checklist and submits the inspection. The Governing Body reviews the inspection and makes the final decision regarding the outcome. In some cases, the Governing Body defines the sub-license of the Stadium (e.g. Stadium Category A, B, C or D). The stadium license/categorization is issued automatically based on successful inspection outcome and is visible on the stadium profile.