Are you great at keeping score at the game, but not so much when it comes to the team accounting? While there should be a healthy amount of fun involved managing a baseball team, keeping the books is serious business. National trends show that the cost of playing sports continues to increase, so it is of utmost importance for the team treasurer to do a good job and report back to team stakeholders.
- Assess how the accounting has been done in the past: either hard copy, digitally or through a sports club accounting software. If it’s mid-year already, continue with what has been established and close out the year with that before upgrading your system.
- Create a budget. Determine the costs of the team: league fees, practice facility fees, tournaments, uniforms, equipment and signage, administrative costs and fun pizza nights or other food related costs. Divide the total cost by the number of players on your team. That will calculate what each player should play to team dues.
- Consider a team fundraiser to make up some of the costs, lowering each individual’s dues. Look into what the team has done in the past and what other teams are doing to effectively raise money.
- Notify each team member about dues in writing and include a firm deadline, with a penalty for paying late, and perhaps an incentive for paying early.
Tips For Staying Organized
- Record every transaction. Using your accounting method, record every cent in and out of your baseball team’s books. Keep receipts for everything. This will help your memory and you’ll have a paper trail of all your actions. Stealing is only for bases, right? There are even some handy apps you could use for receipt organization like OneReceipt or Shoeboxed.
- Pay bills promptly. Develop and maintain good relationships with vendors by being a responsible customer for them. You never know when they are willing to give a discount or service for free, so make sure and inquire.
- Communicate with the fundraising committee to ensure that all vendors are treated respectfully and that donors are receipted and thanked properly. Industry guidelines suggest a timeline of 72 hours after the gift is received.
Donor Acknowledgement Letters Must Contain:
- The legal name of your organization;
- The organization’s Federal Tax Identification Number (EIN);
- The amount donated to your organization;
- The donation date(s);
- The date on which the organization received tax-exempt status;
- Indication of whether the donor received anything of market value in return for their donation; and
- The market value of any gifts, products, etc. that the donor received.
Download our sample fundraising forms and letters for guidance.
Passing the Torch
Unless you plan on staying with the team forever, someone else will be doing your job in the next few years. Consider taking on a team apprentice, someone involved in your organization that you can show the ropes to and who can see the ebb and flow of activities throughout the season. This will not only make the transition easier, but it will also be more meaningful to you.
One of the biggest things to remember when keeping the books is to not become overwhelmed. Follow these guidelines and if you still need help you can always try out an online sports accounting software that will make team accounting a breeze. One of the biggest benefits of using software like MoneyMinder is customer service. We actually answer our phones, and no question is too minor.
There is plenty of helpful information out there to assist you and make you feel like an all-star accountant; because organized books will help your team have a homerun year. Now, play ball!