Lottery-based Registration for Overbooked Events

The Annapolis Pickleball Club often have events that are heavily overbooked.  They organize training sessions for members that can accommodate eight people, but those sessions are overbooked by a factor of five.  Previously the overbooking was handled with a first-come, first-served registration. This  meant a lot of eager members were waiting for an event registration to be enabled so that they could get in.  Recently, our board members came up with a novel idea:

Do a random selection of people to admit to the events from those who attempt to register.

Michael Klybor, our newest customer relationship manager at NewPath, came up with a way to do this by first putting everyone who registers onto the waitlist except for the event organizer. To do this, he set the maximum number of registrations to 1 and manually registered the organizer.  Registration closes a few days before the event. If  the event was overbooked, a random selection of registrants from the waitlist would take place.  Initially the plan was do the randomized selection using a saved search, a manual spreadsheet export, and manually moving the winners from the waitlist into the registration.

But indeed this is a job for Integromat, so Michael thought he would give it a go.  The Integromat solution and Wild Apricot setup is as follows:

  • Assumption: All registrations are of the same type.
  • Prerequisite: Disable the event registration, set waitlist management to manual, set the number of registrants for the event and registration type to the maximum allowed plus one (to include the organizer).
  • Use Integromat to retrieve the event and waitlist registration data for the event in question. Use the event ID as the input to the Wild Apricot Integromat module.
  • For each person on the waitlist, assign a random number (their lottery chance) between 1 and the max number of registrants.
  • Sort the people in order of their random number.
  • Select the first N people, that corresponds to the maximum number of registrants. Note: there may be ties where more than on registrant has the same random number, but this way they get broken randomly.
  • Using the Wild Apricot Make an API call module, move the selected people from the wait list to the registrants.
  • Post-processing: enable automatic waitlist processing to backfill cancellations from those still on the waitlist, enable event registration to allow more people to join the waitlist, email all of the registrants to let them know they were selected, email all of those still on the waitlist to notify them that they are still on the waitlist and might backfill any cancellations.
  • The emails in the post-processing may be doable with Integromat! Yet another Integromat scenario to the rescue...

The Integromat process runs in less than a minute. The time required to extract, manipulate in a spreadsheet and manually register people would take at least 15-20 minutes for each event.  Since Annapolis Pickleball Club has many similar events, this solution is a real time-saver.  I hope that it can work for you.

To get more information and get a copy of the Integromat scenario please contact us.


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