Few decisions are as potentially confusing – or critical to a course’s business – as selecting the right golf software provider for your operation. Savvy operators recognize that golf course management software with integrated marketing technologies, including online tee time and customer relationship management tools, are essential weapons in their battle for market supremacy.
But how does an operator know which golf software provider will make the best partner? What are a vendor’s strengths – and limitations – in helping operators achieve their business goals? And what kind of return on investment should operators expect from technology? Identifying and engaging an effective golf management software provider starts with a few basic steps:
1. DEFINE YOUR GOALS.
Before you can find the best golf software provider for your business, you need to know what you want a golf software partner to help you achieve. Manage course operations? Generate more rounds during the off-season? Attract more customers? Retain existing customers? Be specific about your objectives and develop a series of questions that relate to your specific needs.
Ask every vendor these same questions. That way, you can ensure you’re comparing each golf management software package objectively to help make the best decision.
2. KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS. A golf software provider will never understand your market or your customers as well as you do. Help the company design the best software solutions by providing as much insight as you can. Operators should also select a golf software vendor who understands service. What stands out to a golfer is the guest experience and service your staff provides. Finding a provider who knows how to implement software that enhances service and attracts customers is essential.
3. ASK FOR RECOMMENDATIONS. Ask your peers which providers are reputable and have the best track records based on their own experience. People will tell you what they honestly think about their golf management software, which can be very helpful to know upfront. Customer recommendations can help narrow down the best provider options to assist in making an informed decision.
4. FOCUS ON SERVICE. Success in attracting and retaining customers is largely a function of the experience you deliver. Identify software providers who know how to use technology to enhance service. Look at which operator is doing it right and don’t forget to question the vendor about the extent and quality of its customer support. Find a provider who contains high quality customer service to help streamline operations and assist if any issues to arise.
5. MAKE SURE IT’S EASY. Will your staff be able to learn to use the management software? Does the vendor offer onsite training to help your staff quickly adapt to the software? Ensure the new system is worth the time – and money – to implement. The best way to do that is with a strong case for return on investment. Be sure to find a software solution that is user friendly and can easily be taught and maintained by staff.