Chris Sauter and Wally Shoot are volunteer board members for Lake Stevens Youth Football, a feeder club for the local high school, featuring ten teams and nearly 300 athletes in the Pacific Northwest.
Name: Chris Sauter and Wally Shoot
Organization: Lake Stevens Youth Football
Position: Chris Sauter, secretary; Wally Shoot, webmaster
What they were up against
In 2014, Lake Stevens Youth Football registered the most athletes in its history — while the increased growth was exciting for the club, it also meant that payment collection would be a bigger process and league communications resources would need to be enhanced.
What SportsEngine did to help
Lake Stevens Youth Football partnered with SportsEngine to reinvent its online registration and payment collection process, create a custom website, and give their coaches the tools they needed to communicate with athletes and families — effectively replacing PayPal, HomeTeamsOnline and TeamSnap.
What the impact was
Shortly after joining the organization as volunteer admins in 2012, Secretary Chris Sauter and Webmaster Wally Shoot noticed some areas for improvements.
Year-to-year, Sauter noticed a trend when it came to collecting payments — families weren’t paying on time, or in some cases, at all.
“When I joined the board, we used PayPal to process our registration payments,” says Sauter. “It wasn’t a good experience for families or for staff.”
“PayPal made it difficult to track the status of payments,” says Sauter. “Every year we’d have only 40-45% of our athletes paid for by the time the football season began — forcing us to chase payments all season long.”
In 2017, Sauter and Shoot investigated SportsEngine, knowing that there had to be a better way to do business.
“After moving our registration and payment processing to SportsEngine, we immediately noticed a difference with nearly 100% of families paying their dues on time because SportsEngine makes it easy to pay right when you register,” says Sauter.
“Plus, if an athlete doesn’t pay or a payment bounces, we can see that on our SportsEngine dashboard,” says Sauter. “We now get that working capital up front — protecting us from athletes leaving in the middle of the season.”
While SportsEngine has simplified Chris’ life as club secretary, Wally has had a similar experience as webmaster.
“We used to host our website through HomeTeamsOnline, and while the website was fine, it wasn’t nearly as nice or as easy to use as SportsEngine,” says Shoot.
“Each of our teams has their own website, and SportsEngine makes it easy to manage them all.”
While Shoot is a big fan of the SportsEngine website tool, he’s an even bigger fan of the mobile app and communications tools.
“The mobile app puts SportsEngine over the top,” says Shoot. “Scores, schedules, and communications tools are all right there for coaches and families.”
“When a coach needs to send an important message, they just go into the app and send out one message to everyone instantly,” says Shoot. “You don’t need TeamSnap or social media for communications — SportsEngine already has the tools you need.”
“You can find anyone to build a website, but not everyone can build in the communications, roster creation, registration, and payment processing like SportsEngine does,” says Shoot.
"You don’t need TeamSnap or social media for communications — SportsEngine already has the tools you need."