Weatherbys – Digital Transformation

THE BACKGROUND

Weatherbys Ltd is a UK based company, established in 1770 and responsible for the administration of horse racing in the United Kingdom. It also publishes the General Stud Book, the recognised authority on racehorse pedigree for the UK and Ireland. In Ireland, Weatherbys operates Europe’s premier DNA and genomic testing laboratories, offering a range of tests to multiple animal species. With its Headquarters in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, Weatherbys employs 450 people in offices in London, Edinburgh and Ireland. Weatherbys’ group of companies include a bank, insurance company, commercial asset finance company and a DNA laboratory.

THE OPPORTUNITY

The General Stud Book is a breed registry for horses in Great Britain and Ireland, which is published by Weatherbys every four years. Until recently, breeders wishing to register foals with Weatherbys could only file documents in paper format. With over 14,000 foals registered in the UK and Ireland each year, manual registration was a very labour intensive operation, consuming a lot of time and incurring high costs associated with record keeping and maintenance. The potential for error in this manual registration process was higher than desired and breeders had to wait for a significant time for foal their registration to be completed. Weatherby’s required a solution that allows members of the public to more easily complete animal registrations via an online portal which is then fully integrated to the backend databases via API’s that hold the core registration data.

THE PROJECT

Weatherbys approached TEKenable to streamline the registration process for foal breeders. TEKenable working closely with Weatherbys, designed a new digital registration portal to handle details of foal births online. 

This new digital platform allows for owners and keepers to register foals, broodmares and stallions and also update any information regarding change of ownership or transfer of horses. It also helps Weatherbys maintain a record of gelded, retired and dead horses. Moreover, this platform also helps maintain the record of thoroughbred and non-thoroughbred horses. This new platform is present both in website and mobile application form and allows users to register and review records from anywhere with just a simple click. 

THE OUTCOME

This new digital platform helped Weatherbys eliminate 99% of paperwork from the registration process. Now breeders can simply use this website or mobile application at their convenience without needing to visit a Weatherby office. This led to a 90% reduction in the level of paper based registration applications and provides prompt and accurate information to users. The core administration team no longer have to rekey data into the back office systems because the registration data is validated at point of entry the need for Weatherbys staff to engage in following up applications with issues which consumed huge resource has been removed from the process.

Digital transformation made the registration process more efficient and time saving. The solution is now live in the UK and Ireland on desktop and mobile phone, accepts payments on both credit and debit card and is already saving breeders and Weatherbys valuable time.

Russell Ferris, chief executive of Weatherbys Ireland explains: 

“To date the platform has been very well received by those breeders who have made their foal registrations via the new system. It is our objective to incorporate new technology into the General Stud Book, to create user friendly, mobile and efficient systems to meet the demands of the modern breeder”.

Russell Ferris, CEO Weatherbys

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