There are two options, but SPORTident is by far the most current and motivational.
SPORTident is an electronic timing system created for orienteering events. Each participant has a card—their own or one provided by the organizers. On each control is a unit—a blue box with a round hole in the center—which participants put their card to record that they’ve passed that point. To confirm participants have punched, the units make a small beep and flash a red light. When participants finish, they put their card into a unit that is connected to a computer. This is used to download the data and confirm that participants have visited all the controls in the correct order. A small paper is also printed out with each participant’s exact time and the time they’ve taken for each control. In this way, they can compare these times with other runners. To complement this system, a screen can be used which shows the results updated in real-time from each round and for the different categories. This allows participants to check what place they are in whenever they would like to.
The exact results with split times can be uploaded to a website to share them with all participants.
Traditional punching: A special punch is placed at each control marker, which participants must use to mark the corresponding control number on their map or another paper. When starting, someone must write down the exact start time for each participant and at the finish another person must mark the finish time. Total times are manually calculated, which means this system is slower. Additionally, it has the disadvantage of not being able to confirm whether participants have visited the controls in the correct order, unlike the previous system.