If you are a professional clubmaker looking for a good New Year’s resolution you can keep, this is it. Nearly as important as cutting the shaft correctly, finishing a ferrule or making sure the grip is on straight, there is one other practice that clubmakers should work on. That would be record keeping. No, I am not talking about book keeping for your CPA, but the DNA of the golf clubs you just built for your customer.
What might seem like a little more time on your part may prove to save you time and money in the future. Part of being a professional clubmaker is keeping good notes of what you did. What components did I use? How did I trim the shafts? Did I make any lie or loft alteration to the clubs? What length and swingweight were the clubs built to? Did I add any extra wraps of tape underneath the grip? Well if you kept good records, you wouldn’t have to ask yourself those questions.
What happens if your customer left their 9-iron by the green and forgot it? Or their clubs are stolen or if they want a back up set to take down south for the winter? By keeping good records, the customer doesn’t have to come back in with their clubs for you to measure and try to duplicate. The only reason why they should come back in is to pick up their club or set that matches as closely as what you made for them before. Believe me, they will appreciate that.
Make a spreadsheet on your computer with columns clearly labeled of each of the specifications with the name of the customer and the date. Make sure to back up your files from time to time as computers do crash and you don’t want to lose all your valuable information. You might even print off a hard copy and put it in a dedicated file drawer for future reference. Over time, this will become a normal practice of building a club as much as mixing epoxy or installing a ferrule.
Not only is record keeping important for the actual making of the clubs, but also for fitting. Even if you take the time to fit the player and they for some reason decide not to purchase clubs at this time, does not mean you should prepare your notes. After all, they might come back and you won’t have to go through everything once again. Not only will the customer be thankful for your record keeping to save him or her their valuable time, but they will have the feeling that you are a professional.