Date: March 30, 2015
Author: Stephen Pitt, CEO

CEO update: A great new tool for clubs

Many of you have noticed Golf Australia’s new-look website and the enhanced functionality we offer visitors from the latest news and championship info through to club results and handicapping.

Particularly pleasing to us, though, is that one of its less glamourous aspects – the club support portal – is really beginning to make inroads into the heartland of Australian golf, our clubs.

More than 4800 sessions have been recorded since we launched the portal – in association with our partners – in October.

The areas covered include strategic planning, governance, financial and risk management,

insurance, marketing, and participation programs to name but a few.

We are delighted that more than 1000 people have spent time at the strategic planning and governance section alone – a clear indicator that the plan has struck a chord in the industry.

Helping secure and maintain our 1600 clubs’ financial health and future is a critical part of Golf Australia’s operations.

It is no secret that many clubs are under financial stress. We know revenue levels have stalled while costs have continued to rise. And that the membership model is not as robust as in the past.

Naturally the challenge is to try to increase the supply of golfers – both in the membership and green-fee-paying sense – to all clubs.

From a GA perspective – and those of our colleagues – the co-existing mission is to try to help those clubs with business models to help keep them viable now and into the future.

The club support portal is a really good starting point in that area. We’ve had a lot of positive commentary from clubs about it and the information that’s contained within it.

We see it being expanded and that the whole club support area increases in terms of its scope.

We’re really encouraged by the early use of the portal and we’re determined to make sure the information stays current and to take club feedback to ensure that happens.

We will have case studies up when they’re available to share not only pitfalls, but just as importantly success stories, within the industry as soon as possible after they happen.

The concept of helping clubs with their business is a major issue for GA – and the state associations as well.

So whether you’re on a club committee or not, please take the time to check out the portal because with all the information available, it might just take one fresh set of eyes to help your club remain viable into the future.