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Technology Challenges Golf Clubs

by Tony Dear, Club and Resort Business

The cyber-sky is the limit when it comes to what members and guests can now do online—from checking statements and paying bills to tapping into online directories and databases, and even participating in club-specific social networks.

The annual member/guest tournament at a prestigious private club in the Northwest didn’t go quite as smoothly as planned this year. The club had recently taken on a new head golf professional, and because of a lag in communication between the pro and the tournament’s two volunteer chairmen, e-mails explaining player divisions, tournament format, and the schedule of play weren’t sent to guests until a few days before the event.

“Typically, that sort of thing gets sent out a month before,” a member of the club recalls. “At $1,000 a team, guests certainly had a right to expect important information like that to arrive much sooner. My guest, in fact, called me asking where he had to be and when, and what to expect. It could have been organized better.”

Fortunately, the tournament ended up running smoothly and upheld its reputation as one of the most enjoyable in the Pacific Northwest. More efficient discussion, consultation and execution prior to the week of the event, however, would likely have avoided the few unwanted headaches. “Our Web site is very powerful,” the club member adds. “And for the most part, it works extremely well. But the problem, —which I suspect might be the case at many clubs—is that the staff doesn’t always use e-mail marketing enough to notify members of upcoming events and encourage participation.”

Read the entire article at Club and Resort Business

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