If you take a look at the Chicago Cubs’ front-office directory, you will see more than 200 names listed—dedicated employees striving to make their organization run efficiently and successfully (success being a relative term for the Cubs …). Multiply that by 30 teams and take Major League Baseball’s front office into consideration, and you are looking at thousands of employees that help professional baseball thrive.
The personnel numbers are much different at the rec level. The dedicated volunteers tasked with sports administration for youth leagues are much fewer; the support is much more scarce. Yet, these individuals work just as diligently as their professional counterparts with only a fraction of the resources. Sports administration for these volunteers can be difficult, but few complain, going about their work with enthusiasm and joy. Nevertheless, any ways to reduce the stress on league directors and officers is important. Here are some difficulties admins face and what can be done to ease their pain:
Large rec leagues might see hundreds of registrations, even more than a thousand. If these registrations are paper-based, they can overwhelm admins with forms that must be entered into a computer system manually and stacks of checks that must be sorted and cashed.
What you can do about it: Online league management software greatly streamlines the registration process. As soon as a family registers, player information automatically enters the system. This option also permits payments to be made via credit card, eliminating all those checks and further keeping your league organized.
The teams are all set, and now all you need to do is figure out when they can play. With dozens and locations in play, the sports administration involved is immense. Some directors and schedulers are proficient at sorting everything out and organizing a slate from opening day to the playoffs. But this process takes time. So. Much. Time.
What you can do about it: The same league management solution that helps with registration can also take much of the hassle out of scheduling. Simply enter the teams, the venues, the game times, and any special scheduling considerations (coaches with multiple teams, for example), and the software does the rest. The time savings—and brain cell savings—can be immense.
Difficulty: Rainouts and Postponements
Weather happens in outdoor sports, as do school recitals and Bingo in any sport requiring a gymnasium. Dealing with the inevitable postponements can be difficult, particularly if you don’t have a means of efficiently contacting coaches, referees, and parents. Even a few dozen phone calls on a rainy Saturday morning can be frustrating—the odds of families showing up at a muddy field to discover there is no game will increase.
What you can do about it: Online sports administration software can access the accumulated email and phone number database of your league so that if you must contact families, you can do so easily. Imagine typing out a message that games are canceled and having it go to your entire league with just one click.
What difficulties have you encountered with sports administration?