Convenience through Keystrokes: Little League Launches Online Chartering
To be a member of Little League, thousands of cities, towns, communities and neighborhoods throughout the world annually apply for a charter with Little League Baseball and Softball. When leagues prepare their applications to charter for the 2010 season, today’s technology will allow for process to be completed from a computer.
For the first time, Little League International in South Williamsport, Pa., is encouraging leagues to apply for a charter using an online service available through the Little League Data Center, at: www.LittleLeague.org.
The Data Center link is: http://datacenter.activeteamsports.com/llb/index.jsp? An online tutorial demonstration on how to charter online is available here: http://www.littleleague.org/onlinecharter/
The Data Center is the archive of all of the local leagues currently part of Little League. It provides access to specific profiles for each league, using the identification number. Leagues log in to the Data Center to update profile information.
A similar process will now give a local league’s board of directors the opportunity to complete the charter application and submit it electronically.
“We are keeping up with the times,” Patrick W. Wilson, Vice President of Operations for Little League International, said. “Giving leagues the option to charter online is a convenience that is intended to make the process easier and faster, which in turn will allow leagues to get to the business of operating their leagues sooner.”
As leagues explore this method, they will see that the charter application is identical to the paper version. The only difference is payment will not be submitted along with the completed form.
Instead, the league representative submitting the form will receive an invoice that is to be printed and mailed to Little League International along with that league’s charter fees for the 2010 season.
“Chartering online through the Data Center will save time and effort,” Nick Caringi, Senior Director of Operations and Education, said. “It’s the same charter form, but we are using the technology available to become faster and more efficient with the process.
“The immediate benefit of chartering online is speed,” Mr. Caringi said. “Potentially, we can process data faster, which means quicker charter approval and a more immediate turnaround time for rulebooks, operating manuals and other league supplies.”
Little League did explore the option of online payment using a credit card, but the standard online convenience fee is four percent per transaction. Not wanting to pass that cost on to leagues, Little League International made the decision to maintain its current method of payment.
Earlier this month, Little League International invited several leagues to test the online chartering service. The process proved successful, and to date, 15 leagues have chartered online without Little League promoting the service.
“If a league goes online today, it could be chartered tomorrow,” Mr. Wilson said. “More than ever, the amount of time league officials have to get things done is very important to them. A league applying for its charter online can expect its application to be processed the next business day.
“The immediate benefit is expected to be with the delivery of league supplies,” Mr. Caringi said. “Because a charter can be processed quickly, getting rulebooks, sponsorship information and other materials out to leagues should be considerably faster and more timely.”
Local league presidents are encouraged to take advantage of the electronic chartering option. Once a league’s chartered is approved and all fees are paid in full it will receive the league supplies/ASAP (A Safety Awareness Program) CD, other pertinent operational items; and will be eligible for Little League insurance.