May 25, 2023

Nashville SC Case Study: Keeping Players Safe and Parents Informed

Nashville SC is a Major League Soccer club based in Nashville, Tennessee. The team began to play in the league in 2020 as a continuation of the USL club of the same name. Nashville SC’s Youth Academy teams compete in the U13, U14, U15, and U17 age brackets of MLS’s NEXT league.

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Key Takeaways

Nashville SC’s Youth Academy uses Teamworks Hub as the sole method of communication between coaches, staff, and players. This provides greater clarity and a new level of oversight that ensures players are safe and club and league regulations are being met. Nashville SC also utilizes Hub to consolidate all relevant documentation in a single, centralized location so parents can easily access it.

“It’s clear policy that our communication platform is Teamworks – not private messages, texts, or emails – so we can track it and everything is organized. Whatever messages we send not only go to the players, but also to their parents, which is great for us from a safety standpoint.”
- Valentina Galvis Gallego, Academy Administrator, Nashville SC

The Opportunity

Nashville SC wanted a way to streamline all coach-player communication across its four academy age group teams, in keeping with SafeSport recommendations. The club’s Youth Academy also needed a system that could act as a single source for policies, procedures, and other documentation that parents might need to see. Checking both boxes would ensure the safety and welfare of academy players, increase the effectiveness of the safeguarding initiative, and help the club comply with league regulations. 

“Everyone at the academy who comes into contact with minors has to be SafeSport trained. That fits in with Teamworks and our overall safeguarding priority”

The Challenges

Messages were often sent and received via platforms like WhatsApp, email, text, and multiple other methods. Handbooks, guidelines, and other documents were also dispersed across multiple formats and systems. This made it hard to track communication between coaches and potentially vulnerable players and ensure parents had the same information as their children. It also limited staff members’ ability to pinpoint and quickly respond to potential policy violations and other issues, as messages could be missed or deleted. 

The Solution

Providing Messaging Oversight

Nashville SC’s Youth Academy is using Hub for all communication between coaches, staff, and players. Club administrators have oversight of all inbound and outbound messages and can access the history of individual and group chats. This not only simplifies communication, but also ensures coaches and staff are being respectful, open, and appropriate in their contact with players and that the club’s policies and SafeSport guidelines are being followed. 

“We have four youth teams in our academy – U13, U14, U15, and U17. Their Teamworks accounts are linked to their parents. They can see everything the players see because from a safety standpoint, as we’re dealing with minors, we want it all to be out in the open. The league also requires us to make all this information accessible to parents.”

Improving Parents’ Information Access & Visibility

One of the requirements outlined by MLS is that all member clubs make safeguarding information readily accessible to parents. The Files/Links feature in Hub enables Nashville SC Youth Academy to easily share current and complete documentation by pinning it to a convenient dashboard. Parents can also download safety forms, find contact details for MLS’s hazing and bullying hotlines, and click on links to other useful resources. Connecting parents’ and players’ accounts with the Profiles feature makes sure they receive the same information, notifications, and updates.

The Impact

With Hub, all communication with players is visible, transparent, and accountable for Nashville SC Youth Academy staff. Parents are reassured that they have all relevant information and are able to view everything that is shared with their children. This has built trust, increased confidence that the club is prioritizing player safety and welfare, and reduced the number of inquiries about safeguarding policies. 

Utilizing Hub has enabled the Youth Academy to maximize the positive impact of SafeSport training, simplified compliance with MLS safeguarding standards, and improved organization for staff.

See for Yourself

Interested in exploring how Teamworks can support your club’s safeguarding efforts? Contact us to schedule a demo today.

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