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How Digital Ticketing Speeds Up Reconciliation During Playoffs

How Digital Ticketing Speeds Up Reconciliation During Playoffs

Digital ticketing has dramatically improved the reconciliation process for postseason events. Now school administrators can reconcile playoff events in minutes, saving schools and associations hours, weeks, and months of staff and volunteer time.

We recently had a chance to catch up with Bobbi Madsen on the very topic of digital ticketing and reconciliation processes for schools and associations. Madsen serves as the Chief Financial Officer at the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF), and she knows exactly what it takes to close out the books after a busy playoff season. Madsen has supported tens of thousands of events during her 15-year tenure at the CIF, which serves more than 1600 member schools in California.

"The best thing is to not have cash. Also, you can log in and have real-time attendance just like that. Not having to count cash, deal with cash, and accept cash or checks from schools has been a dream come true."

- Bobbi Madsen, CFO, California Interscholastic Federation

The result of our conversation was a guide to reconciliation for schools. Bookmark this page so you can save time when reconciling your postseason events.


What Is Playoff Reconciliation?

Playoff reconciliation is the process of counting all tickets and money taken in by the host school on behalf of the association during playoffs.

Raise your hand if you want that job. Imagine the scene: It’s a Friday night at 11 PM in 2018, following a first-round playoff game that your team lost in. You are an athletic director sitting in an office with no deadbolt, counting $50,000 cash with nobody around to watch. You miscount and start over for the third time. It’s now 2 AM, and you have finished. Finally, you write up a report and deposit the money into a dropbox, or you may even mail it to your state association office that night.

After all that work, your school doesn’t even keep the proceeds. They belong to the association.

Digital ticket sales have reduced that process to be a simple login (takes 5 seconds) and review of an itemized report (takes 3 minutes) for member schools.


What Associations Need for Reconciliation

Associations need a clear reconciliation and sales report in order to meet state financial requirements and both internal and external auditing processes. They also need the funds sent to them, whether via bank-to-bank transfer or by check.

Associations generally own playoff events that school teams participate in. In the most common model of association playoffs, schools participate in association-owned events and then host the event on behalf of the association. The association carries insurance and otherwise owns the event; however, schools are the ones that collect tickets and money on behalf of the association. Schools are typically responsible for event sales accounting.

Historically, this reconciliation is an accounting of cash sales, which must include the unit sales count and revenue for each ticket type. For example, the association will need to know the number of adult tickets, student tickets, and senior tickets sold for each event that they host with a school.

The reconciliation now happens in the association's GoFan dashboard. The association and host school can see all sales from their events. There are also flexible permissions that can be adjusted to improve the experience for both the school and the association. For example, an association can choose to end ticket sales when they reach capacity, or they can open it if they feel the need to offer more tickets of a certain type.


Elements of Reconciliation Report Requirements

Most associations require the following information when schools submit a reconciliation report. Oftentimes schools do not even have to submit this to the association. Associations can pull the report themselves from GoFan HQ.

  • Name of event (host and opponent schools listed)
  • Owner of event (this is usually the association during playoffs)
  • Date of event
  • Ticket types
  • Price of ticket types
  • Number of tickets sold by type
  • Amount of sales sold by ticket type
  • Total tickets sold
  • Total sales for event

What Schools Need for Reconciliation

Schools need less work around reconciliation. The postseason is fun and exciting, but it generally creates additional work for schools. Playoffs are dynamic and hard to plan for because each event is based on the outcome of a game. Postseason events don’t typically generate meaningful profits for host schools either. Playoff revenues are earned first by the state associations, even in the case of rev shares.

GoFan HQ offers the benefit of reporting and reconciliation efficiency for schools in its online portal to help ease the responsibility of playoff hosting for schools. Schools no longer need to count cash when the association offers digital-only ticket sales.

Stressed administrators do not have time or the security detail to count cash and manage reconciliation with traditional paper methods. Secondly, associations do not have the time to chase cash deposits and reports for months after the playoffs end.

With digital ticketing, school hosts can easily add and edit events in real time, with options to customize event details, download sales reports, and view ticket purchaser information. School administrators can easily access the information they need on demand. 



Digital ticketing has significantly improved the reconciliation experience for schools. It has eliminated the need to carry cash around late at night after the games, and the chances of miscounting funds have been removed as well. Schools that host ticket sales on behalf of their association can now take three minutes to glance at their sales report and log off for the night.

To learn more about how digital ticketing can help your school during the postseason and beyond, contact us or read our Digital Ticketing Checklist for Schools in the Winter Playoffs.

Digital Ticketing Checklist for Schools in the Winter Playoffs


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