When the Good Times Roll… Stay On Top of Your Game!
As we are now more than half-way through 2018 it is a great time to reflect back on how the year is going, and more importantly to look forward and find ways to keep growing your business. As golf course owners and managers it is vital that you keep up with the changing times and focus on ensuring your most important asset, your golf course, is changing with the times as well.
The past year has continued to show some positive trends in golf and many in the industry are working on introducing new golfers to the game we all love. Recently, the National Golf Foundation released their Annual Report, which shows another year of increased golf participation. They also reported an increase in the number of “non-golfers” who are interested to play on a real golf course. Many speculate we will continue to enjoy the upward trend through this year and beyond.
Competition for current and new golfers remains fierce and with so many choices one can play, you need to remain competitive and provide the best experience you can among your competitors to attract golfers. The most successful golf courses are finding ways to improve their golf course in addition to improving customer service and experience.
We asked our experts at BrightView Golf Maintenance to share their tips for keeping your course competitive and managing your golf course today and in the future.
- Don’t be complacent. To stay competitive, you need to keep your course conditions up to par! Conduct an audit of your course’s infrastructure and make sure you have a long-term investment plan in place to keep systems and features current such as irrigation systems, greens and bunkers. It is vital to know the areas of your golf course that need improvement, prioritize these projects and then lay them out in a 5-year strategic plan.
- Your reinvestment should also be an investment for your players/members. When you are making upgrades, it says a lot to your players. It creates confidence that you’re planning for the future and keeping your course conditions top notch. Players recognize increased fees is part of the package of getting course improvements.
- Broaden your amenity package. Give players and families many reasons to come to your course regularly. Look at ways to make your course more accessible and welcoming to new golfers like expanded tee boxes and adding “Family tees” for kids of various ages. Some courses have even looked adding larger cups during specific hours scheduled for family play.
- Having the right equipment makes a difference. Having both properly functioning equipment and also the correct equipment plays an integral role in providing better conditions. When you properly maintain your equipment it simply functions better and you can see the difference in quality of cut and efficiency allowing you to do more work. When your equipment begins to significantly age and not function properly you really see an increase in cost of ownership with increased repair and maintenance. Also, equipment that does not function properly can be a safety hazard for your crew.
- Find quality labor in a high-demand labor market. Labor demand is up making it harder to find quality professionals. Keep your valued employees, and be creative or resourceful when seeking new talent. Additionally, focusing on their safety is paramount. At BrightView, this is our most important priority with crew members and we place great importance on training and safety gear.
These are just a few helpful tips and it is important for every course to have a strategic plan to reinvest in your most valuable asset, your golf course. By having a strategic plan and looking into both the near future and long-term, you can better plan your path for growth and continued success. Addressing current needs immediately should help make 2018 another great year for your club. We hope you find your course to success this year.