Ultimate guide to seasons

What is a season?

In Award Force, seasons are used to contain an award cycle. For some programs, this may begin and end within a calendar year while others stretch over several years. The season functionality is not required but may be helpful to those who have a set start and finish date for accepting and judging entries. 

What is seasonal?

Seasonal elements are those that contain unique content in different seasons. For example, updating a field within one season will not impact any prior seasons your program has run. Non-seasonal elements are those that will be reflected across seasons, like content blocks. 

To view a full break-down of what elements are seasonal and non-seasonal in Good Grants, check out our complete guide: What is seasonal in Award Force?

Create a new season

When creating a new season, you have the ability to copy an existing season's configuration or to start a new season without your prior setup.

Tip: programs that experience little change between seasons should consider copying their configuration to save time. Edits can be made to the copied season to meet any new requirements. 

To create a season:

  1. In the Manage workspace, go to Settings > General > Seasons
  2. Click Create season
  3. Give the season a name
    Note: this name will be visible to your program's users so naming it clearly and concisely is important. 
  4. Select whether this season should be a copy of an existing season and choose the season to copy or a new season entirely
    Copy or new season radio buttons.png
  5. Set the 'Season status'
    Note: only one season can be active at a time. 
    • Draft: visible only to managers within your account
    • Active: visible to all managers, entrants, etc. 
  6. Click Save when finished

Checklist for a new season

When creating a new season, whether copied or new, it's important to carefully review all of the elements of your configuration to ensure that everything is up-to-date and reflects your program's current requirements. 

Location Checklist
Settings > General > Account
  • Check the program name and domain, particularly if they include dates.
Settings > General > Theme
  • Replace any branding from your prior season, especially those that include old logos or dates.

For a full breakdown of theming options, see: Theme configuration guide

Settings > Content > Content blocks
  • Update content blocks with current rules, links, dates, and support information. 
    Note: content blocks are non-seasonal meaning that changes to draft seasons will be visible in active seasons. 

Learn more about content blocks in our Content configuration and management article. 

Settings > Entries > Categories
  • Add or remove categories as needed.
  • Update category descriptions or images if applicable.

To learn more about categories, check out our Category configuration article. 

Settings > Entries > Tabs
  • Add, remove, or tabs as necessary.
  • Tabs can be category-specific; check that they are applied to the correct categories if new categories are added or old categories are deleted. 
  • If attachment or contributor tabs are configured, ensure that their parameters and requirements are up-to-date. 

For more details on tabs, see our Tab configuration guide. 

Settings > Entries > Fields
  • Add, remove, or update fields to meet current requirements. 
  • Fields can be category-specific and/or conditional to values of other fields; ensure they are properly configured per the new season. 
  • User fields can be made to persist across seasons or be specific to the active season only; check that these fields to gather user information are configured properly. 

You can learn more about fields in our Field configuration article. 

Settings > Entries > Rounds
  • Check that the entry round is set to open and close at the proper date and time. 

For additional information on rounds, see: Round configuration

Settings > Communications > Notifications
  • Create or update existing notifications to include your new season's important dates and information. 

Learn more about notifications in our Ultimate guide to notifications

Settings > Communications > Social
  • Replace old branding assets and input your program's new information for users who share the program online. 

For more details on social configuration, see: Social sharing configuration.

Settings > Users > Registration
Note: existing users are non-seasonal and will not need to register again. Learn more about registration in the Configure registration guide. 
Settings > Users > Roles
  • Ensure that the entrant role is set as the default for registration. 

Learn more about roles, see: Ultimate guide to user roles

Editing a draft season

To edit the configuration of your draft season, simply select it from the season drop-down at the top of your dashboard and then configure it as normal.

Season drop-down on dashboard.png

Archiving seasons

When the time comes to archive a season, simply make a new season active. Here's how:

  1. In the Manage workspace, go to Settings > General > Seasons
  2. Click on the name of your new season
  3. Select the Active season status radio button
    Season status radio button options.png
  4. Click Save when finished

If you need to refer back to your program's previous season for any reason, such as exporting data, you can do so by following the instructions here: Access previous year's data.

Using perpetual seasons

For some programs, seasonal functionality may not apply. If, for example, another entry round occurs while judging of the previous entries is still in progress. In those instances, Award Force supports perpetual seasons through the use of multiple tools. To learn more, see: Utilising perpetual seasons

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