The Bunker Toolbox was primarily designed for the golf course maintenance professional. Although others within course management may use this as a guide or tool, the maintenance professional is in the best position to formulate and execute many aspects of bunker project planning. However, presentations may be an area that is unfamiliar or uncomfortable, so we’ve created this Appendix and Appendix D to take some of the uncertainty out of the process.
From the standpoint of presentations, there are two primary situations where you may be required to provide information in a concise manner and perhaps in front of multiple decision makers. The first is an initial presentation where you’re looking to have management approve a more formalized bunker planning process. The second is a complete presentation, usually in front of the greens committee or an ownership board. The second situation is where you provide, in complete detail, all relevant aspects of the bunker project so financial considerations and approval can be made.
Download this Appendix in a printable format here PDF
Part 1 – Initial Management Presentation Tips
Project Focus – It’s all about justifying the full project planning process so that a complete review can be made. Once the complete review is performed by ownership a go/no-go decision can be made on the bunker project.
There are additional resources that will have to be dedicated to the full planning process, you’ll need ownership to be behind the effort. However, the effort required to prepare the initial review will be your own. You’ll need to make time in your schedule to pursue the collection of this information.
Historic Impact – In many cases, golfers/members seldom see the work necessary to properly maintain a golf course. This is especially true for bunker maintenance. What occurs after rain events and behind the scenes goes un-noticed, so you need to put these facts front and center. Be diligent and document these settings through photographs. Plan and organize a image library you’ll be able to reference and use images in your presentations.
You need to equate these efforts into a quantifiable amount in terms of maintenance labor expenditures and sand replenishment costs. Furthermore, you need to analyze your regular bunker maintenance efforts and determine how a proper renovation will extend the life of bunkers. Compare current costs with anticipated savings over the long haul.
Preliminary Cost Estimating – It’s important to provide a basis for understanding the costs of bunker projects. We’ve provided an MS-Excel spreadsheet in the RFP/Cost Estimating folder of Appendix B that will help you begin the estimating process. The spreadsheet has a number of line items that you may or may not be performing, so determine your general needs and use the calculation/dimensions created in your Course Assessment.
NOTE: The cost numbers provided in the spreadsheet are general averages for various line items. Costs may be different in your area, so it’s a good idea to check with other courses in your area that have recently executed a bunker project.
Initial Planning Approval – Good managers and business owners like to know what the possibilities are relative to improving their business. Bunker maintenance is no different. When pulling the background information together for initial planning approval, always keep in mind that it is worth understanding the range of options available to you. Proceed with the attitude that “the right information will help us make the best decision”.
As you move forward with obtaining initial planning approval, let ownership understand that bunker renovation planning is a small investment that delivers large results. Being organized with the issues at this stage translates into trust that ownership will have in you. They want to know that you’ll manage the planning process effectively and deliver reasonable options at the end.
Part 2 – Full Project Presentation Tips
Each organization is structured differently, so the precise format of the final project proposal will vary. Since the planning process will involve collecting ideas from a variety of sources, don’t hesitate to credit those sources. You’ll find that many prospective vendors many choose to help you formulate your final ideas for consideration in vendor selection.
When you’re presenting your ideas, you’ll want to organize them into a specific sequence. What follows is an intuitive format that should highlight the program details. As you’ll see in the next Appendix – Presentation Templates, we’ve provided the same structure as a helpful guide.
Introduction & Acknowledgements – Always begin your presentation by describing the team involved in the planning process and thank them in a public forum. Summarize the presentation briefly with the key elements in your material.
Project Solutions & Benefits – Start your presentation by describing the bunker problems affecting your course and detail what efforts you make in bringing bunkers to the club standard. Follow up the problems with the basic actions you’d like to pursue and how it will benefit your organization, members, and golfers.
Make sure to re-use your photographic documentation of unseen bunker conditions from the Initial Management Presentation. Again, showcase your current efforts and explain the budgetary impact of your current maintenance routines.
Recommended Project Structure – Provide your audience with a brief description of the implementation methods you could use (from Part 2 – Bunker Construction: Setting Up the Project), but quickly follow that with your recommended method and explain what benefits that method provides to your organization.
Important Strategic, Mechanical, and Aesthetic Improvements – You’ll need to highlight two or three of the most important actions from each of these aspects. Don’t go into every detail, but give the audience a good sense of what your priorities and approach have been. Be prepared for any follow-up questions or comments, and have back-up materials ready to explain more detailed objectives.
If you have examples of other facilities that have made similar improvements, it is always a good idea to highlight the benefits other organizations have attained by following these actions. Make sure that your audience knows bunker projects are common. Get them informed about the techniques you’ll be using and that they are proven and accepted practices. Nobody likes to feel like a guinea pig.
Project Scope – Provide the basic parameters of the bunker project. If you’re planning on defining phases or if you’ll be performing the work internally, give the audience a sense of what the project will entail and how you’ll be addressing the impact to the course over time. Don’t shy away from acknowledging some inconveniences may be experienced.
Pre-Screened Project Vendors – Showcase the talent that you’ve selected for the project. If you’ve got an architect involved in the initial design work, it’s a good idea to highlight their conceptual or final ideas and background. Include descriptions on the contractors or any subcontractors that will also be a part of the project. Highlight concepts like professionalism, quality, and trustworthiness. People like to know that they’re entrusting their course to reliable, proven businesses.
Anticipated Project Schedule – Provide a basic calendar for the project. Highlight start date and completion target date. If you have established important project milestones, include them in this overview.
Keep everybody aware of the flexibility of schedules and that issues may be uncovered during renovation that were not planned for. You should explain the contingency plans you have for the schedule, should something arise.
Costing & Financials – Avoid showing project costs in complex tables. Provide important costs as total items. As seen in the Cost Estimating spread sheet (Appendix B), the main table sections work well. Have backup material ready should you be asked about how specific numbers were reached.
Don’t shy away from the total number either. As a golf professional, you’re aware of what maintenance budgets are and how they work. Renovations are no different. If you’ve set up the project in phases, then you’ll want to explain how this option will stretch costs over a greater period of time.
If you’ve performed an initial budget that includes methods for where the investment money or expenditures will be pulled from, include your ideas or options here. As a capital expenditure, let your audience know that these expenditures have good tax consequences.
Project Management – Once you’ve discussed dollars and cents, everyone will want to understand how the money will be safeguarded. This is why project management is last. Wrap your presentation up with positive, actionable measures. Provide the audience with some of the important aspects you’ll be implementing, especially how project communications will flow and how members/golfer will be kept apprised of project status and impact.
Since so much work has been performed in the planning stages by this point, it’s a good idea to set a target date for decision making and acceptance or modifications of the project. Those that are a part of the decision-making and budgetary process should be provided some general timeframes for when final decisions would be realistic.
If you are looking for the Bunker Toolbox in its complete form, we've created a downloadable file in ZIP format, so you will need software to "unpack" the files.
Complete Bunker Toolbox ZIP
If you're looking for select Bunker Toolbox Appendicies as a complete set:
Planning Checklists ZIP
Project Worksheets ZIP
Presentation Templates ZIP