Data Tidy Up

The below article has been put together in response to clubs' feedback to help everyone better understand the purpose, why, key points and how to provide further feedback on the data tidy up.


· The purpose of the data tidy up is to remove records of low quality that exist in GMS to ultimately reduce club and CB administrative burden as we ask players and members of clubs to manage their own record within GMS.

· Today this management of records relies on volunteers spending significant time managing hundreds and in many cases thousands of records at their clubs through manual processes. The intention is to have processes that can automate this to reduce the burden not just this season, but every season going forward.

· Comply with GDPR. It is the responsibility of clubs, CBs and the RFU to hold up to date and accurate information for individuals. This process aims to remove incomplete and potentially inaccurate records where data is unusable.

· The RFU requires a number of fields such as Date of Birth to uniquely identify records.

· It helps clubs, CBs and the RFU have an accurate view of the health of the game at any time, gaining a better understanding of who is 'active'.

· Help for greater retention of players and members by being able to contact and be in direct communication to them.

· Our intention is to align adult rugby with current age grade practice of player affiliation. We will be running a pilot during the 2021/2022 season with a small number of CBs but other clubs and CBs will be able to affiliate.


· As we plan to encourage players to manage their records there is a concern that current data quality will be a barrier to usage and result in a poor user experience.

· In the vast majority of cases this low data quality is due to incomplete data against a record or the fact that an individual does not know they have an existing record on the system due to a legacy entry via a paper form.

· This builds on the success of online Age Grade Registration, online Course Bookings and online Club Memberships which have all seen significant growth. Records created as part of these processes have been meeting the Minimum Data Standard.

· From this season players who are included on an Electronic Match Card will be able to see their individual playing stats in their GMS Personal Profile. New Match and Stats Centres will also be launched on’s Fixtures & Results to showcase league, match and individual playing stats. An example of this can be seen on

· GMS is used by all voting clubs and their constituent bodies along with the RFU, the data within the system is used to both allow organisations to interact with players and members but also as a tool to administer the game. It is important that the system holds a true reflection of individuals involved, and that each individual has a single record that they can retain through their lifetime in rugby.

· By tidying this data we will both improve the user experience and be enable CBs, Clubs and individuals to have access to more accurate information about the game.

Key points

· Removing records that are unusable will reduce barriers to engagement moving forward.

· Any new record created in GMS will meet the RFU Minimum Data Standard.

· Creating a new account should take around 30 seconds, this is an easier process than attempting to recover an account that a user may not know exists.

· Active Members in GMS will NOT be archived in this process. Clubs are however asked to review whether the appropriate end date is against each membership scheme for their Club.

· Players that have appeared on an Electronic Match Card will NOT be archived in this process.

· Individuals with an active DBS will NOT be archived in this process.

· The RFU will be introducing a player affiliation process that will make it easy for players to engage with their club and denote their intention to participate each season.

· GMS should be an up to date system not a historical record, enabling a better understanding of the health of the game and helping to retain and attract players.

· Going forward an individual record will receive reminders to log in to maintain an active status, prior to any archiving process which will be triggered by 2 years of inactivity.


· We are always trying to improve the support we offer to our clubs and CBs. We strongly believe that action is required to improve the current state of our data, however we are keen to understand opinions on how best we deliver this change.

· If club representatives want to provide further feedback there are a number of options:

o Raise a ticket in the Help Portal where we will be tracking and collating feedback received

o Contact you Club Developer to discuss further

o Look out for an online forum to discuss this further with the project team

Please see the other guides on the portal for Data Management and How to Update Invalid or Incomplete Records, and also the FAQ's on the page Running your club > Club Support Centre under the ‘Data Management & Data Tidy’ drop down for further guidance. 

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