All football clubs, no matter their size, need sound financial planning.
What is a budget?
All clubs should have a budget as it underpins all club activities and plans, in the short and long term. Your club budget is a tool to help your club manage money and plan for a healthy future.
The budget is simply a plan that’s been expressed in money terms and is usually prepared for one year in advance. A budget will show:
- How much income your club expects to receive during the next financial year (income)
- How much your club expects to spend in the next financial year (expense)
- The predicted surplus (profit) or deficit (loss) for the budget period
A club’s income is the money received by the club. A club’s income can come from:
- Registration fees
- Canteen sales
- Gate takings
- Merchandise sales
A club’s expenses can be defined as the amount of money that is spent by the club. Club expenses can include:
- Medals and trophies
- Insurance and affiliation
- Ground hire
- Footballs and other equipment
- Event costs
- Uniforms and merchandise
Preparing your budget
When preparing the club’s annual budget, the treasurer should lead the process. However, they will require input from others, like club committee members, equipment managers, coaches, trainers, and canteen managers.
The easiest way to prepare your budget is by basing it on the income and expenditure of the previous year.
Start by reviewing last year’s income and consider any changes in income for the current year like:
- Is your income level expected to be similar?
- Is income reducing or are there new income streams?
- Remember to be careful in budgeting excessively for income that may not happen!
Then review last year’s expenditure and consider any changes in costs for the current year. Ask:
- Is expenditure increasing through activity, inflation or necessity – for example, repairs?
- Are there new costs to account for this year?
- Are there any savings to be made or costs no longer relevant?
After drafting your budget, consider how risky it is! Have you been too optimistic in setting income levels or is there anything you can do without, should you need to cut back?
Lastly, make sure the budget links to the club’s objectives and strategy so that you’re making the best use of your money.
Reviewing your budget
Now that you have completed the annual club budget, it is important to continually review it to ensure you stay on track! The treasurer should prepare a monthly report that is then presented at each committee meeting through the year. The treasurer will also need to prepare an annual financial report at the end of the year that will be adopted at the club’s AGM. If the club is incorporated under legislation, the club is required to lodge a return (copy of the annual accounts) at the appropriate state/territory authority.
The treasurer is responsible for developing a financial plan (or budget) for the club in consultation with the relevant committees and is responsible reporting the financial status of the club to the committee on a regular basis and comparing the financial performance with the budgeted performance.