The Committee Structure At Your Community Rugby Club
How many people does it take to run a rugby club? The answer can be anything from one to 200, and most clubs in England are somewhere in between. The vast majority of community rugby clubs are run voluntarily, with the occasional paid member of staff for roles such as administration, coaching or grounds maintenance. Finding the volunteers with the right skills is one of the greatest problems facing community rugby clubs in this country.
This section describes the most common structures for rugby club committees, and gives advice on the roles and responsibilities clubs of different sizes should look to employ. We hope that this sheet will help to answer the questions:
- Which committee positions should our club have?
- Which are the most important, if we cannot fill them all?
- How should we be looking to expand our committee as the club grows?
- What jobs and responsibilities does each post have?
- How should we structure our meetings, committees and sub committees?
The committee structure of your club will obviously depend on the size of the club, the number of players and teams, and the ground and clubhouse. It is important to have a clear management structure with a small number of decision-making groups running the club with agreed policies and affordable budgets.
The RFU has produced a Model Community Rugby Club Committee Structure (PDF 287kB) to give you a working example. Also, Corby Rugby Club's Committee (MS Powerpoint DOC 512kB) provides a useful example of how your administrative structure could be organised.
A small management committee will head the club’s management and administrative structure. It will meet regularly, take decisions, make recommendations, coordinate and delegate to sub-committees, and plan ahead. It will comprise Club Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, and Chairpersons of the key sub-committees. The Club Chairperson will ensure that sub-committee Chairpersons hold necessary meetings. Sub-committees will be empowered i.e. have delegated authority and accountability, plus an annual budget where necessary. A general committee comprising elected members and representatives from all club sub-committees and task groups will only meet when necessary to coordinate club activities.
All key club officials will have simple job descriptions, which define everybody’s role within a clear structure. Not only is it important for everybody to understand their own role and responsibility, but it is also equally important for them to see how they fit into the whole picture – what everybody else does and where jobs may overlap. The RFU has some general club committee role responsibilities to get you started.
Terms of Reference of Sub-Committees
All committees and sub-committees will have terms of reference, as will any task groups which may be set up to deliver projects which have a finite timescale for completion.
Effective Committee and Sub-Committee meetings
These will be focused with realistic agendas. Detailed information needs to be gathered and preliminary decisions made outside main meetings, so that meetings can be used to debate policy and quickly reach well-informed key decisions.
The chart below describes what should happen to a club as it grows from an initial structure of a group of friends in a single team, to a strong club with several sections, its own ground and facilities. Identify where your club is on this ‘growth line’ and compare your existing structure to the suggested one below.