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Accounting Software for Clubs and Associations

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Last editedNov 20212 min read

From sports clubs to church groups, accounting for clubs and associations involves a delicate balance between tracking memberships and sticking to a budget. Fortunately, there’s a range of accounting software out there to help. Here’s a closer look at the key features of the best accounting software for sports clubs and associations, as well as our top picks.

Basics of accounting for clubs and associations

There’s a multitude of clubs and associations in Australia, including groups based on common interests such as:

  • Hobby clubs

  • Buyers’ clubs

  • Sports clubs

  • School groups

  • Professional organisations

  • Service clubs

  • Social clubs

  • Community groups

All of these may have different goals and intents, but they will have similar accounting needs. In addition to the usual accounting tasks such as expense tracking, financial reporting, and budgeting, clubs and associations must also think about membership management. This might include collecting dues or donations, while paying for member events.

The issue is that clubs might have a designated treasurer, but the treasurer won’t necessarily hold the same range of bookkeeping experience that a professional accountant would. Fortunately, accounting software can help bridge this gap.

The best accounting software for clubs and associations

The best accounting software for sports clubs might be different to the best option for a school group. When choosing the right option, you should think about the size and type of your organisation as well as the complexity level of its finances.

Here are just a few key features to look for in your accounting software:

Keeping these features in mind, here are some of the top options for clubs and associations in Australia.

Xero

While Xero isn’t designed specifically for clubs alone, it’s a good choice due to its user-friendliness and comprehensive features. It allows you to share your expenditure details with donors and club members online, with real-time data alerts. Xero is also easy to sync with third-party apps like GoCardless for workflow management, payment processing, fundraising, and marketing.

Aplos

Aplos is designed specifically for clubs and associations, with clever built-in features to assist you with accounting, reporting, tax prep, and membership management. It can handle a wide selection of activities – register members for events and create journal entries while tracking cash flow. Aplos is also useful as non-profit management software for organisations that need to accept and track donations. A user-friendly online donation tool assists with fundraising.

Sage Intacct

Sage’s Intacct software is designed for small and medium-sized associations with accounts payable and receivable applications, cash flow management, and other standard bookkeeping features. It’s easy to get a handle on even for beginners, and like Xero you can add on third-party apps for donor management.

Intuit QuickBooks

QuickBooks is a popular accounting software amongst nonprofits and for-profit businesses alike. It will help you issue invoices, track your fundraising endeavours, and manage donation letters. If your club takes in a sizeable amount of donations or membership fees, you’ll need to be sure that everything’s in order with the Australian Tax Office. QuickBooks is well known for its tax support, and it offers numerous add-ons for a customisable service.

Blackbaud Financial Edge

Completely cloud-based for easy tracking and sharing with multiple members, Blackbaud’s Financial Edge software offers an array of fund accounting services. This includes standard accounts sheets for generating financial reports. Tackle the general ledger, accounts payable, and accounts receivable sheets from a central dashboard with real-time reporting. There’s no payroll support, but for volunteer-based clubs this won’t be an issue.

Do I need club management software?

Even the smallest clubs can benefit from using accounting software. If you have any expenses to track or members to manage, it doesn’t hurt to keep them all in one place with an organised platform. Club treasurers are often volunteers, so using non-profit management software makes life a little easier. Be sure to keep your unique needs in mind as you compare your options, and don’t forget to carefully look at pricing plans before opting in.

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