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Matching Options

An overview of Round-Robin and A/B Subgroup Matching

Updated over a week ago

In the event editor, Gatheround currently offers two matching options: Round-Robin Matching (default) and A/B Subgroup Matching; and two match size options: 1-on-1 Matching and Small Group Matching.

  • Round-Robin Matching: This is the default matching option. As long as people join the activity within the initial 10-second countdown, they will be matched with someone new or someone they haven't matched with recently. If you keep playing activities, eventually everyone will have matched with everyone else – then it starts all over again!

  • A/B Subgroup Matching: Choosing this option asks participants to self-identify as belonging to one of two pre-defined subgroups when joining the event. Gatheround will then do its best to match participants who join a activity with someone of the other subgroup. (This isn't always possible when uneven numbers of people from each subgroup join an activity. See below.)

    When participants join the event, they choose which subgroup to join using the labels you provided when editing the event, e.g., "Product" and "Community":

A/B Matching with Uneven Subgroups

When equal numbers of participants from each subgroup join a activity, each person will be matched with someone from the other subgroup.

However, if uneven numbers from each subgroup (e.g., 18 mentors and 12 mentees) join the activity, this is impossible.

In this case, Gatheround matches as many people across subgroups as it can, then matches anyone else remaining within their subgroup. For example, if 18 mentors and 12 mentees join an activity, all 12 mentees will match with a mentor and the remaining 6 mentors will match with each other.

Make sure to keep this possibility in mind when choosing activities and conversation cards to use for your event. In general, it is best to assume that some people will match within their same subgroup even if you try to keep the groups even. When this happens, participants are notified that more people from their subgroup joined the activity and so they have been matched with someone from the same subgroup. They can choose to continue the conversation anyway or click "End Conversation" to return to the event room.

Small Group Matching

If you select small group matching for an activity, your participants will be matched for a group of four for the duration of the activity. If there aren’t enough people to make perfect four person groups, then we will create smaller or larger groups as needed. For example, if 10 participants join the activity, there will be one group of four and two groups of three. If 13 participants join the activity, there will be two groups of four and one group of five.

When creating groups, we will optimize to create new connections. Participants will be more likely to match with people they have never matched with before. Groups will change in each subsequent activity.

Choosing “Small Group Matching” for your round

When creating your event, click on the “matching” drop-down directly below the activity name, image below. Simply select “Small group” from the given options. You can also make this adjustment from the event room itself by clicking on the name of the activity and selecting "Small group" in the matching field.

For more information on Small Group Matching, see our Small Group Matching: FAQ's.

Matching When Someone Joins Late

Both Round-Robin vs. A/B Matching, as well as Small Group Matching, are only able to match people who join the activity during the initial 10-second countdown. Gatheround has to match everyone who joins the activity all at once in order to take into account things like their match histories, subgroup selections, and small group sizes.

People who join an activity late—after the initial 10-second countdown—will be added to an existing match.

Have more questions? Check out our help center!

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