Give your club a ‘health check’
THE health of our clubs is hugely important to Golf Australia.
It was identified in our strategic plan released this year as being a key focus area, and also in our participation plan of 2013, and it is critical to the game in this country. It is as simple as that.
There are roughly 1600 clubs in Australia, and our research tells us that around half of them are under some kind of financial duress. Many of them are effectively run by volunteers; all of them are key stakeholders in our game.
They need help and this is why Golf Australia, in a collaborative initiative with the peak bodies in the game, has launched a club support portal on our website, at http://clubsupport.golf.org.au/ aimed at improving the capability, financial performance and sustainability of our clubs.
It’s quite an interesting idea, which we have taken from a look at England Golf, as well as other sports in Australia such as bowls and cricket which have gone out of their way to provide support mechanisms for their clubs.
We see it as Golf Australia taking leadership in this area, but we also needed buy-in. This is why it has been done in cooperation with the state and territory golf associations, the PGA of Australia,
Golf Management Australia, Australian Golf Course Superintendents Association and the Australian Sports Commission.
Clubs who use the resource will find that it carries a health check tool which takes around half an hour to complete, and even offers up potential actions to address problems. It also includes a club benchmarking tool developed by Golf Management Australia, where clubs can compare themselves with others.
The state bodies are coming on board. Several have already agreed to employ specific staff to help out golf clubs with issues.
At Golf Australia, we urge clubs to consider using these tools and draw upon the expertise that exists in the industry. Golf clubs are an unusual business and they are difficult to run, with a massive asset to maintain. In the modern environment, consumers are not necessarily wanting club membership because of time constraints.
Clubs need to adapt to this environment but we are on hand to help.
CEO – Golf Australia