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It's hard to believe why some college student recreational centers would still use the old three-ring binder to keep track of their day-to-day operations.

After meeting with Shawn Boom of Active Network at the NIRSA show in Minneapolis, it seems the way to go for college rec centers is by using campus recreation software such as that developed by Active Network to make things easier and more efficient.

No longer do students or intramural basketball teams have to go across campus to the student rec center to see when the gym is available or register for a sport. At a lot of universities these days, all of that information is on the student rec center's Web site. This saves time and money for all involved.

Active Network has 30 years experience (starting with telephone registration back in the 1970s) and claims to have a 97 percent customer retention rate. Boom said the company's business has tripled in the last two years.

One of Active Network's clients, Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo, saves close to $20,000 each quarter by using Active Network software. It used to take Cal Poly about 400 hours to process 4,000 participants for intramural sports registration in each quarter. With the software, Cal Poly completed four separate sports leagues in a total of about two hours. Plus, the school has about five to 10 participants in line at the front desk instead of 300.

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