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Club Secretary Thread

  • 11-11-2020 9:13pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    Anyone interested in setting up a thread specifically for club secretaries to ask questions and ping ideas around? We were considering moving to Clubforce but this new Foireann looks ok. I dont have anyone to talk about these things to!


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 230 ✭✭ Blue Magic


    Just curious, how are lads' clubs running their AGMs this year?

    Personally, I think it should be doable over Zoom. Have all your nominees ready on Polls from your Exec committee meetings, etc. Let people read the minutes of the previous AGM themselves and all that...

    What do people think?


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    I think we are going to have to wait until restrictions are lifted. We are a rural club and half the parish doesn’t have broadband. We’ve tried a committee meeting on zoom and it was a disaster.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,074 ✭✭✭ Uncle Pierre


    Not currently a club secretary myself, but have been in the past, and still involved in admin, so hope it's okay to join in here. :)

    We're a rural club too and are waiting and hoping for the opportunity to hold a "regular" type of AGM as well. Zoom (or similar) might be fine in theory, but wouldn't work well for many of the people who'd have to be involved here.


  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ thefa


    Rural club again.

    Club starting using clubforce and have definitely seen benefits in terms of slight membership increases, decreased cash handling and less admin for the GAA registration. On the flip side, we lost about 4.5% on fees per transaction as well as having to pay for the initial setup and there is an annual fee of €200. Also, it’s likely that some members will be unable to sign up so you may need to still hold a registration night.

    Will be looking to see is the GAA alternative better but straight away, the transaction fees will be lower and think there is no subscription so you could immediately be looking at savings.


    Say a good number of clubs will struggle to get traction for a virtual AGM. Have seen numerous suggestions to hold off until it’s possible to hold a standard meeting but nobody could tell you when that will be.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,830 ✭✭✭ kala85


    thefa wrote: »
    Rural club again.

    Club starting using clubforce and have definitely seen benefits in terms of slight membership increases, decreased cash handling and less admin for the GAA registration. On the flip side, we lost about 4.5% on fees per transaction as well as having to pay for the initial setup and there is an annual fee of €200. Also, it’s likely that some members will be unable to sign up so you may need to still hold a registration night.

    Will be looking to see is the GAA alternative better but straight away, the transaction fees will be lower and think there is no subscription so you could immediately be looking at savings.


    Say a good number of clubs will struggle to get traction for a virtual AGM. Have seen numerous suggestions to hold off until it’s possible to hold a standard meeting but nobody could tell you when that will be.
    Club force must be making a fortune. The covid worked out well for them


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  • Registered Users Posts: 780 Kirk Van Houten


    Rural club. Using incorporeal. Emailing all members with reports and asking for submissions in advance. Zoom meeting then just for the executive committee.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,911 ✭✭✭ beggars_bush


    Rural club. Using incorporeal. Emailing all members with reports and asking for submissions in advance. Zoom meeting then just for the executive committee.

    Should you be sharing reports like that?


  • Registered Users Posts: 780 Kirk Van Houten


    Should you be sharing reports like that?

    We have an email distribution list for all adult members entitled to be at the AGM. Sent to them prior to meeting and they have two weeks to raise any agenda items. All approved by county and Croke Park.

    Broadband not great in the area and the idea of trying to run a Zoom meeting with circa 100 people would be just a nightmare.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,074 ✭✭✭ Uncle Pierre


    thefa wrote: »
    Rural club again.

    Club starting using clubforce and have definitely seen benefits in terms of slight membership increases, decreased cash handling and less admin for the GAA registration. On the flip side, we lost about 4.5% on fees per transaction as well as having to pay for the initial setup and there is an annual fee of €200. Also, it’s likely that some members will be unable to sign up so you may need to still hold a registration night.

    Will be looking to see is the GAA alternative better but straight away, the transaction fees will be lower and think there is no subscription so you could immediately be looking at savings.

    We looked at Clubforce earlier in the year, but the transaction fees and annual payments put us off the idea of using it. We've already got online membership payments on our club website anyway, and no more than 15 or 20 people use it any year. Of the rest, about half pay the old-fashioned way by cash or cheque, and the about half pay by monthly direct debits, following a big push we put on a few years ago to get people to do things that way.

    We haven't looked a whole lot at Foireann yet. There'll be a change in Secretary whenever our AGM goes ahead, and there's a strong chance that the new one will be either myself or my wife (we've both done the job before). We'll have a look at it then anyway.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,074 ✭✭✭ Uncle Pierre


    Should you be sharing reports like that?

    Don't know how it operates in other places, but here in Wexford, even the County Board circulates all reports in advance of convention (which is basically the county AGM), including the financial reports.

    Honestly don't think this is an issue.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ thefa


    We looked at Clubforce earlier in the year, but the transaction fees and annual payments put us off the idea of using it. We've already got online membership payments on our club website anyway, and no more than 15 or 20 people use it any year. Of the rest, about half pay the old-fashioned way by cash or cheque, and the about half pay by monthly direct debits, following a big push we put on a few years ago to get people to do things that way.

    We haven't looked a whole lot at Foireann yet. There'll be a change in Secretary whenever our AGM goes ahead, and there's a strong chance that the new one will be either myself or my wife (we've both done the job before). We'll have a look at it then anyway.

    I feel like if your club goes down the route of online registrations, you’ll have to push as much of the non-direct debit members down the route of registering online while setting up the DD members on the system and marking off as paid each year. We were 100% cash/cheques and there were some memberships lost but the flexibility signing up online gave led to a slight overall increase which we’d hope to improve on as people get more familiar with it and renewing becomes easier.

    One thing to bear in mind when looking at the transaction fees is that cash and cheque receipts may not be free of fees if you’ll be lodging them into a club bank account from my experience. BOI currently have 0.6% charge which was increasing to 0.8% before the pandemic hit.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    Anyone further along with their AGMs yet? Looks like we won’t be able to meet for a while so we are going to do it over the phone.


  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ thefa


    webpal wrote: »
    Anyone further along with their AGMs yet? Looks like we won’t be able to meet for a while so we are going to do it over the phone.

    Had it online. Fair bit of organizing required. Definitely served the purpose of giving some continuity for the timebeing as well as getting information out to members.


  • Registered Users Posts: 526 ✭✭✭ Fine Cheers


    Yes we had ours online before Christmas and went well. Around 30 attendees on Microsoft Teams. HQ have issued guidelines to help.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,262 ✭✭✭✭ kippy


    Good idea for a thread.
    Not a secretary but involved in a few things.
    We started using Clubforce a few years ago to:
    1. Make it easier for people to register 24/07
    2. Reduce the amount of paper/manual data input.
    3. Reduce the amount of cash handling in the club.
    4. Better promote membership.
    5. Reduce the workload on the coaches who would have had to handle/manage a lot of the paper bits and pieces.
    6. Improve member communications and member compliance.
    While there is a fair overhead involved we believe it has been a great system for us and improved communication, compliance and increased our membership income.

    Foireann is going to be a major change in how things can be done and the headline figures involved in the registration process are making us look at it from a registration perspective but maybe not this year as I foresee a few problems.

    Are there any clubs here looking at using it for taking memberships directly this year?


  • Registered Users Posts: 526 ✭✭✭ Fine Cheers


    Yes we are with Clubforce for all the reasons you listed plus the main one - online lotto. So Foireann is the GAA's own app ? Don't know anything about it yet.
    Clubforce also bringing out a one stop shop website / smart phone app to compete with Clubify's Clubzap.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,262 ✭✭✭✭ kippy


    DIY KING wrote: »
    Yes we are with Clubforce for all the reasons you listed plus the main one - online lotto. So Foireann is the GAA's own app ? Don't know anything about it yet.
    Clubforce also bringing out a one stop shop website / smart phone app to compete with Clubify's Clubzap.

    There's a lot of companies with similiar/alternative offerings - each offering various bits and pieces.

    Yep Foireann is the replacement for ServaSport and they are trying hard to push it as the defacto registration platfrom for clubs. It is going that way anyway I'd say with a bit of pain required the first year you make the move I'd say.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    Anyone have issues setting up membership packages on Foireann? We are not using it to collect membership but an option needs to be there to bulk register. No matter what parameters I use, I get a message saying not suitable for bulk registration. All members have been verified.

    Unfortunately faqs nor YouTube videos show this problem. I’ve raised a ticket but I know they are very busy.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,262 ✭✭✭✭ kippy


    webpal wrote: »
    Anyone have issues setting up membership packages on Foireann? We are not using it to collect membership but an option needs to be there to bulk register. No matter what parameters I use, I get a message saying not suitable for bulk registration. All members have been verified.

    Unfortunately faqs nor YouTube videos show this problem. I’ve raised a ticket but I know they are very busy.

    Where are you uploading the bulk verfied members from?
    I haven't seen any documentation from any of the "third party" oganisations that have platfroms for membership on how to "sync" the registration data.


  • Registered Users Posts: 27 mooz


    webpal wrote: »
    Anyone have issues setting up membership packages on Foireann? We are not using it to collect membership but an option needs to be there to bulk register. No matter what parameters I use, I get a message saying not suitable for bulk registration. All members have been verified.

    Unfortunately faqs nor YouTube videos show this problem. I’ve raised a ticket but I know they are very busy.

    My club has just recently started using Foireann. As a coach, I've registered Monday and have been trying to familiarise myself with it since. I paid my membership and my son's last night no problem, just had to 'create family' or was it 'add family member'. Straightforward and will definitely take alot of work out of registration, form filling, communication etc


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    kippy wrote: »
    Where are you uploading the bulk verfied members from?
    I haven't seen any documentation from any of the "third party" oganisations that have platfroms for membership on how to "sync" the registration data.
    If you are manually registering someone (who may have paid cash) or if you are using an outside party for membership (e.g. clubzap), you still have to register people on Foireann using the bulk register option similar to servasport, even if only one person. I understand you need to verify these people first which I've done, then create a membership option and then bulk register. If successful, once you hit bulk register you will be asked which membership option but all of the ones I set up are saying unsuitable for bulk registration.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    webpal wrote: »
    Anyone have issues setting up membership packages on Foireann? We are not using it to collect membership but an option needs to be there to bulk register. No matter what parameters I use, I get a message saying not suitable for bulk registration. All members have been verified.

    Unfortunately faqs nor YouTube videos show this problem. I’ve raised a ticket but I know they are very busy.

    Just looked at this again this evening and there appears to have been a few updates, different layout etc. I tried again and all memberships are now coming ok, problem solved somehow


  • Registered Users Posts: 528 ✭✭✭ fitzcoff


    Is there a date yet that all members need to be registered by?

    I've set up foireann but so far very few have registered,


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    fitzcoff wrote: »
    Is there a date yet that all members need to be registered by?

    I've set up foireann but so far very few have registered,

    Members need to be registered by 31 March to be eligible to vote at agm.


  • Registered Users Posts: 667 ✭✭✭ DiscoStew


    webpal wrote: »
    Members need to be registered by 31 March to be eligible to vote at agm.

    That date is being pushed back for this year. They haven’t given the new date as yet but there will be an extension.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,140 ✭✭✭ webpal


    :P
    DiscoStew wrote: »
    That date is being pushed back for this year. They haven’t given the new date as yet but there will be an extension.

    Where do see that? I thought they had already pushed it from last October


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,262 ✭✭✭✭ kippy


    webpal wrote: »
    :P

    Where do see that? I thought they had already pushed it from last October

    31 March has been the GAA date as far as I know for ages, but it will have to be pushed out this year with zero chance of club activity before then.


  • Registered Users Posts: 528 ✭✭✭ fitzcoff


    Thanks for the replies, I would be hoping it'll be pushed out as its very hard to get people to register when they aren't training / playing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 667 ✭✭✭ DiscoStew


    kippy wrote: »
    31 March has been the GAA date as far as I know for ages, but it will have to be pushed out this year with zero chance of club activity before then.

    I think it was on the Role of the Club Secretary webinar from Connaught GAA it was mentioned.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 667 ✭✭✭ DiscoStew


    Membership deadline has been extended, confirmed at meeting of Ard Chomhairle today. New date has not yet been confirmed.


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