Last September, during the 43rd Ryder Cup, Pega announced our multi-year agreement to be a worldwide supplier of the infamous global golf competition. Additionally, we welcomed two professional golfers – Marc Leishman (PGA Tour) and Mel Reid (LPGA Tour) – to our team as Brand Ambassadors.
While golf and tech may seem like an odd pairing, the partnership is what ignited the Pega Golf Challenge. Our challenge brought together minds from across the world to try to design, propose, creatively problem solve, and build applications using Pega technology.
The end result was something amazing: creative solutions to different aspects of golfing. One winner, the team of Ravitheja Pothulluru and Kasi Viswanath with Eclatprime Digital INC, homed in on golf and environmental sustainability with their solution GreenGolf.
The inspiration for GreenGolf
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of golf? For us, it was imagining the massive, bright green swaths of land that make the sport possible. But to keep the golfing green – well – green, courses need water. And a lot of it.
Unfortunately for areas where water conservation and drought are growing concerns, golf courses are being asked to reconsider their water expenditure. In places like Arizona, where temperatures can reach 118 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer and golf courses make up about 2% of the state’s water use, cutting back on water could mean a lot less green on courses.
On top of that, there are a lot of other environmental concerns with the current model of golf clubs. For many spectators, event tickets can only be bought in-person. For players, there’s often a lack of digital information on the club’s layout and navigating courses can result in more carbon offsets. Plus, ineffective supply chain handling, using nonrenewable energy sources, and poorly managing waste after events can increase a club’s carbon footprint even more.
So, we wanted to focus our team on improving the relationship between golf and the environment using an app that could monitor, report, validate, and resolve potential environmental incidents at clubs. Specifically, we wanted to look at solutions around water consumption, alternative energy use, and supply-chain management, and create an application with Pega Infinity™ using the Pega Express™ delivery approach that could envision a more sustainable future for golf.
Creating an agile, adaptable process
To tackle these challenges, we had to approach the problem using the Pega Express delivery approach – a delivery process that is agile friendly, so we could easily build, adopt, and transform our solution as we considered potential outcomes. For our small team of two, this simple, repeatable approach made it easy to collaborate on a digital solution.
Starting with microjourneys, we broke down our goals into four solutions: improving regulation and compliance standards, facilitating robust facilities management, optimizing energy consumption, and keeping clubs, employees, and players aware of current sustainability efforts.
While the end goals feel massive, the Pega Express delivery approach makes it easy to structure our process to achieve quick wins that can accumulate into a powerful application. And as environmental concerns are an ever-evolving subject, using this methodology makes it simpler to adapt our solution to new eco-friendly standards as they arise.
Going beyond with Pega Infinity
Next, we wanted to focus on the features of this application. How would users interact with clubs? How could monitoring and governance be unified through development? We considered a variety of different channels, outcomes, experiences, and microjourneys – all of which could be developed using Pega Infinity. Here are some key insights we found:
- Building channels: We leaned into the Pega Platform to build website and mobile channels that could do anything from KPI monitoring via dashboards to collecting feedback from public surveys.
- Developing workflows: Using Pega’s dynamic case management with SLAs helped us develop ways to track energy consumption, monitor reuse and recycling of resources, and have an audit history of changes throughout different workflows.
- Maintaining continuous integrations: We know sustainability efforts are bound to change, so Pega’s integration capabilities helped us automate metric tracking, tap into other IoT hardware, and create integrations with analytics for everything from supplier systems to social media posts so we can integrate new changes as they happen across the application.
- Centralizing implementations and the cloud: The application uses Pega Cloud™ implementation to automate flagging of compliance concerns, developing notification pathways, and creating reminders for certifications and governance updates.
Imagining a greener future for golf
Pega’s Golf Challenge was an exciting opportunity to really dive into development through the Pega Express delivery approach and think outside the box for solutions. Making a more sustainable future for golf is certainly a challenge, but it’s one that can be tackled thoughtfully with the right approach.
While GreenGolf isn’t a real application (yet), the experience still provided us with a lot to consider. For example, how can other IoT devices further enhance sustainability efforts? And how could AI or interactive channels like chatbots impact a golf course’s sustainability efforts?
We also believe golf courses should lean into digital solutions, as our entire world is becoming more digitized. With more integrations, courses can cast a wider net for their audience and draw in new fans of the sport through their sustainability efforts. And with lower emissions per person visiting a course, coupled with other sustainability efforts, golf can have a greener future that encompasses a powerful partnership between the community, the environment, local governments, and global fans.
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