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Building a Pool Membership Management System

If you're managing a private membership swimming pool, what's the best solution for keeping track of your members, checking them in at the front desk, and processing their membership applications? Whether you're managing a swimming pool in a neighborhood or apartment building, management systems can be grouped into three categories:

1. Paper passes and a log-book. The traditional method is to mail out applications each year to your homeowners or renters. They send back a list of who's living there, you print out passes and mail or distribute them prior to opening day. The front desk attendant collects them when members enter the pool and returns them when they leave. Perhaps members sign-in on a paper logbook. Labor costs are high to process all the applications by hand. You can't suspend passes in the middle of the pool season. You can't easily determine how many people are using the pool each day. And you have to trust that the person holding the pass is really the person named on the pass.

2. Standalone computer system with barcode system - example: PoolPass! Building your database is as easy as filling out an Excel spreadsheet. You can load member images or take them from a webcam. Member passes have barcodes, making for easy check-in using a barcode scanner. You can suspend members at any time (for example, if dues aren't paid). And you can track pool usage much easier than a paper log.

3. Cloud-based membership software. Options abound for services that provide online membership management: these are usually geared for commercial facilities such as gyms. They offer features like member billing, class scheduling, employee timecards, and point-of-sale. Offsite pool managers can also update member records from the web. However, these services can be expensive and require internet service at the pool. PoolPass offers a simple, low-cost cloud based solution using the same software in addition to the standalone version.

Regardless of the system you select, how will you manage the application process and design and print your passes? Managers can do this themselves, but outsourcing these tasks to a company that specializes in this service will often save time and headaches. We recommend services from

They have a variety of services specifically geared toward community swimming pools including pass printing, application processing (mail and online), software/hardware setup, and training.

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