Managing the finances of a sports club or association can be difficult. Many clubs and associations work within very tight financial constraints, often relying on volunteers to help manage the finances. Choosing the right accounting software to make the process easy will not only make it easier for your volunteers and staff to manage the financial management of your organisation, but it can also provide greater transparency over the process. But what should you be looking for in good accounting software for your sports club or association?
As with any organisation, your club or association should aim to adopt best practice when it comes to financial management. The financial viability of your organisation has a direct influence on its future, which impacts upon volunteers, staff, and those that rely on the services of your organisation. While the laws and regulations that govern your responsibilities in managing a club or association vary from state to state, they do resemble the laws that govern any other business or organisation that. That is to say that there are common law duties that the Directors of your organisation need to abide by. As with a large corporation, the directors of your organisation must act competently, honestly, in good faith, and in what they believe to be the best interests of the organisation.
In determining how the finances of your organisation should be run, it is important to establish who runs it and what authority they have to solve any concerns as they arise. Any organisation will have a number of office bearers who take responsibility for the club and may be people appointed to serve on a board as well as volunteers who play a role in the operation of the club. Office Bearers have legal obligations as Directors and are often given titles such as President, Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, Public Officer, and Member Protection Information Officer or may be referred to as a Committee Member or Administrator.
As outlined by NSW’s Office of Sport & Recreation, your directors are expected to:
- Monitor the management of the organisation
- Understand the fundamentals of the organisation’s business
- Keep informed of the club’s activities and assess appropriateness of management’s business practices
- Monitor the club’s policies
- Be familiar with the club’s financial status by regularly reviewing financial statements
- Enquire into matters where necessary.
The situation of the club should be taken into account, considering: The type of organisation, size, board composition, and the distribution of work between directors & other officers.
Once you have established the form and structure of your organisation, the next step is to find an accounting software package that meets those needs. In working with a limited number of staff who may not be financial management experts with restrictions on the amount of time and energy they can put into the club, you will require accounting software that can automate as much of the process as possible.
A solution should incorporate the ability to:
- Make it easier to manage your club’s finances
- Maintain compliance with tax requirements
- Save time on bookkeeping, banking and data entry
- Help set up, track and maintain budgets easily
- Invoice members faster using online invoicing
- Improve collaboration with office bearers and Accountants
- Easily create the reports you need
- Store your data in a secure environment in Australia
With most community sports clubs founded to provide sport locally and increase participation numbers, the skill-set of its members often don’t cross over with the skills required to handle the financial well being of an organisation. The right accounting software will not only automate most of the tasks you need, but will also stay up-to-date with any changing taxation rules.