The Committee and Stats Officer have received numerous enquiries regading points allocation and validation checks. Below is an explanation of the current and previous points systems.
The current system of uploading points has been in use since February this year. While it was being implemented, no points could be uploaded in January as the system used by previous stats officers had become defunct.
Previously, the stats officer relied on a database which held all the necessary information so that they could check the information on the C2 before using a spreadsheet to calculate the points. All of the points for one tournament were calculated in one spreadsheet. A file was then exported from this spreadsheet and uploaded to the BFA website. The website read the information from this file and allocated points to the appropriate dogs. This method allowed all of the points from one tournament to appear on the website simultaneously. Unfortunately, this system would not recognise the membership numbers that were 10,000 or higher. Also, once we moved over to the new website, it was not possible to update the database properly with the 2018 renewals.
The new method of uploading points is carried out entirely on the website. An online form, which, to an extent, replicates a C2, is filled in. This works on a C2 by C2 basis. So, for each team, firstly, the team registration number (TRN) is entered. The team’s name is then auto-filled as is the registered captain’s name and BFA number. This is then checked against the C2. Next, the BFA numbers of the dogs listed on the C2 are entered and the name and BFA number of each dog’s registered handler are auto-filled as well as the dog’s registered breed. The handler can be changed by entering the BFA number of the handler listed on the C2 for that dog.
If, for example, a dog’s number is entered, and it does not match the dog’s name on the C2, either no name will autofill as no dog exists for that number, or a different dog’s name will autofill. Occasionally, the name and number may match, but the breed will not which is an indication that there has been an error with the number of the dog on the C2.
Once all this information has been filled in, then the numbers correlating to the dogs circled for each leg are selected and the times for each leg are filled in. Then, the form is submitted, and the website runs validation checks based on the information that is required by the rules. The website checks that the team is in the right class for the tournament; that the captain is a current BFA member; that dogs are of age and have not changed teams too frequently; that the dog’s registered owner is a current member; and that the handler is a current member. Once the points from May are all on the website, the website can be updated to include a check that the box-loader is a current member. If any of the information being checked is not valid, the website will indicate an error and will not allocate points to the team. If all is well, then the website will allocate points accordingly to each dog.
If a dog’s or handler’s name and number do not match, the form does not allow for only three dogs to be selected in a leg. In these cases, then the validation checks must be carried out manually and the points for each dog must also be calculated manually and then awarded on an individual basis. In the event of any issues on the C2, the registered team captain is emailed as soon as possible (there may be a wait if a query needs to be sent to other BFA officials). This process can be very time consuming. Provided everything is correct on a C2, one C2 can take 15-20 minutes to upload to the website. If there are any errors, then it can take twice that length of time.
Up to 5th June 2018, 1,108 C2s have been processed since the start of the year. Of those, just over 14% of C2s have had at least one error. Of all of the errors, nearly 37.5% of these have been handler name or number errors; 23% have been dog name or number errors; 20% have been non-renewed members (this has been a variety of captains, registered owners and handlers); 12% have been captain name or number errors; 7% have been team name or TRN errors; and 1% have been instances in which a team registered as Open has been used for Multibreed or vice versa.
We hope this is helpful to the membership to understand the way the validations checks are done and why points may not be being added to the website as quickly as they were in previous months.