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Learning Series: What to Collect During the Entry Process

Learning Series: What to Collect During the Entry Process

You’re going to collect more than just information during the entry process. To stay organized and to streamline the entry process, it’s important that you know exactly what you need from entrants and when during the entry process.

In this article, we’ll discuss everything you may need, including:

  • Information
  • Digital artifacts; and
  • Physical goods


Regardless of your organization, program, or structure, you’ll always collect information from entrants. This may include demographic information about themselves or their organization or contact information so you can maintain communication throughout the program.

You can collect this information using your awards software, an online form, email, a Word doc, or a fillable PDF. It’s up to you to determine what will work best for your audience and how you’ve set up your program.

Digital Artifacts

Every awards program is designed to award something. And, for your organization, that something might be a digital artifact. Digital artifacts can include everything from YouTube videos to photographs, music, websites, and even apps.

With awards software, you can allow entrants to submit digital artifacts in a wide variety of formats.

Physical Goods

Digital media isn’t enough for some organizations depending on what entrants are submitting. As such, you may still have physical goods to collect during the entry process.

Physical goods are very specific to your organization. For example, if your awards program is about cars, you will likely need to see the actual car. There may also be other, special considerations to be made when you collect these goods. Some of these considerations may include:

  • A drop off day
  • Shipped entries; and
  • How you will return entries, if need be

Don’t Skip a Step in the Entry Process

You can’t afford to skip a step in the entry process because you’ll be missing key information judges need to do their jobs.

Put in the hours during planning to ensure you don’t skip any steps and are as clear as possible as to what you need from entrants. Doing so will save you time (and grief) later in your program.

Double check that you aren’t missing a step in your entry process by downloading our free worksheet!

Ashley Surinak is the resident OpenWater expert on all things content. From the blog to guides and beyond, you'll find her at every turn in your OpenWater journey.

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