AMIDST the dramatic end to Argyle’s Sky Bet League One campaign, it was announced that the club became one of only nine member clubs to have achieved Gold Award status in the EFL’s 2019 Family Excellence Scheme.
The scheme represents the EFL’s commitment to make attending football matches a more family-friendly experience, which is also firmly in-line with Argyle’s Vision and Values. In the 12 years that the award has been in operation, the club has achieved Family Excellence status 10 times – having missed out twice in 2011 and 2012, largely as a result of issues caused by administration.
This year, though, is the first time in the club’s history that it has won the exclusive Gold Award. The third of a three-part series, we delve deep into ten different categories that make up the EFL assessors’ report on Argyle’s match-day experience for families. Finally, Inside Stadia, Staff Engagement Feeling Valued and Friendliness.
Given the disruptive nature of having Home Park’s main stand closed for the season due to a £6.5m renovation project, one could be forgiven for expecting the assessors to judge us harshly on this criteria, but both the family visitors and the EFL expert awarded us a rating of 9/10.
Unsurprisingly, the club’s innovative Family Zone located in the Barn Park End went down very well with both the family, and the EFL expert.
The family visitors said, “it was a very positive overall experience, due to staff friendliness, the mascot and the family room,” which was backed up by the EFL expert, who praised the “very positive atmosphere of the club.”
As we announced recently, the club was awarded with the “best stewards” mini award at the recent Family Excellence Scheme EFL meeting, and this is very much reflected across all staff members, in the assessors’ view.
Awarding us another 9/10 rating, the family visitors remarked “there were fantastic staff on match-day and over the phone, too. It was great hospitality.” The EFL expert also praised the Pilgrims’ workforce, saying, “there was a brilliant staff approach toward customer service, I was very impressed.”
Friendliness and Feeling Valued
Throughout the piece, both visitors continuously remarked on the friendliness and customer service of all staff at the Theatre of Greens, so it is perhaps no surprise that the EFL assessor, upon visiting us in September for the clash with Doncaster Rovers, awarded us 10/10 in this area, while the family backed that up with a near-perfect 9/10 for the Westcountry Derby with Bristol Rovers.
The club is proud of the results, which placed us second in League One, and fifth in the EFL overall for families’ match-day experience. That said, we are always working on ways to improve visiting Home Park, and hope to make 2019-20 even better.
Interested in sampling our award-winning match-day experience for yourself? Take advantage of our Early Bird season-ticket discount up until Wednesday, 22 May.