Clubs and Societies Handbook

Here’s your one stop guide to everything clubs and societies.

If you have any questions, please email Jodie Barnes.

Signatory Positions

Signatory positions are positions each club or society must have to be ratified.

President

The President is the leader of a club or society and oversees the group’s activity. As President, you will provide support, advice and guidance to the other committee members, developing and managing the direction of the group. Experience of what the group does is important, as is dedication to the club or society’s aims and objectives.

 Skills Required:

  • Leadership
  • Conflict resolution
  • Communication
  • Dedication
  • People management
  • Motivation of others
  • Organisation
  • Delegation
  • Change management

 Key Responsibilities:

  • Upholding club or society constitution
  • Accountability as a group signatory and understanding what this means
  • Lead on Development Plan and oversee implementation of this, includes group’s aims
  • Calling and Chairing meetings
  • Delegation of tasks
  • Figurehead of your group to your committee, members, Students’ Union and the University
  • Motivation of committee and members

Vice-President/Secretary

Your group will choose whether to have a Vice-President (VP) or Secretary as the second signatory. In the eyes of the Students’ Union, both have the same roles and responsibilities. The VP or Secretary is the President’s right hand man or woman and will assist the President in the overall running of a club or society, helping to oversee the group’s activity. As VP/Secretary, you will provide the vital administrative support that’s required to run the group effectively from booking rooms to ensuring strong communication throughout the committee and members.

Skills Required: 

  • Organisation
  • Writing (minutes and emails)
  • Ability to prioritise tasks
  • Multi-tasking
  • Record keeping

  Key Responsibilities:

  • Assisting President with upholding club or society constitution
  • Accountability as a group signatory and understanding what this means
  • Manage club or society emails
  • Meeting administration including organisation of meetings, compiling agendas and minute-taking
  • Arranging EGMs or AGMs
  • Booking rooms or venues
  • Ensuring attendees to training, competitions, meetings or events are paid/signed up members
  • Managing the group’s mailing list
  • Awareness of key dates throughout the year
  • Collection of post from pigeon hole in the Students’ Union
  • Inventory management – ensuring that all items brought throughout the year are added to the group’s inventory
  • Regular communication with members

Treasurer

The Treasurer is usually a club or society’s third signatory. As Treasurer, you are responsible for the group’s finances in terms of own funds and budget. You should know how your finances stand at any one time and will ensure transparency of finances so members are aware how funds are being spent. You will also be responsible for avoiding own fund debt and overspend of budget and will be the main liaison between supplier and Union for invoices.

 Skills Required:

  • Organisation
  • Numerical competency
  • Communication with members
  • Being transparent and trustworthy
  • Planning and forecasting
  • Processing payments
  • Account management

  Key Responsibilities:

  • Assisting President with upholding club or society constitution
  • Accountability as a group signatory and understanding what this means
  • Learning and understanding the Students’ Union financial system (clubs and societies)
  • Learning and understanding Surrey Sports Park’s financial system (clubs only)
  • Leading and overseeing the group’s budget request
  • Keeping track of all income and expenditure
  • Organising affiliation to national bodies
  • Ensuring any new suppliers are set-up with Surrey Sports Park (clubs only)
  • Setting group membership fees for the year
  • Ensuring invoices are paid on time
  • Ensuring any cash from subs, fundraising etc. is paid into own funds immediately
  • Liaising with the Union’s Finance Assistants if any concerns over transactions
  • Organising fundraising or sponsorship for your club or society

AGMs

AGM stands for ‘Annual General Meeting’.  These meetings take place once a year during the second semester to review the club’s/society’s year and to hold an election for a new committee.

Why do we have to hold AGMs?

Without having an AGM to fairly and democratically elect a new committee, a club or society will no longer be correctly constituted by the Students’ Union.  It will therefore go dormant, which means not being able to book rooms, withdraw money, have a stall at various Union events such as Freshers’ Fayre – generally it means your club or society no longer exists in the eyes of the Union.  This is because the Students’ Union’s byelaws define a ‘group’ as correctly constituted if it has held a valid AGM within a 13 month period.

How to hold an AGM

Signatories need to book the AGM for their club or society, using the information that is sent out by the Union to their club or society email address.  This is how the Union will communicate with you throughout the process.

Before your AGM

Once you have successfully booked a timeslot for your AGM, (this is done online) you need to wait for confirmation from the Union of your room, and that your chosen time is confirmed.  Times and venues are confirmed by the Union between the deadline for booking your AGM, and the deadline for advertising your AGM.

You’ll also need to follow the Union’s instructions to upload two essential documents – your annual report for the year, and your inventory.  Both of these documents help the Union to understand your experience in your club or society, and to keep track of the equipment you may own, so that things don’t go missing and your experience doesn’t suffer.  There will be a deadline for both of these documents and a way of uploading them online which will be explained via email.

All AGMs must be advertised to all students for at least 2 weeks before they start.  Individual clubs and societies have a responsibility to ensure that they are advertising their AGM, but the Union also advertises a AGM calendar which is hosted from the Union website.

In the run up to AGMs beginning, the Union’s staff team are also spending their time ensuring that an elected Union officer is available to attend every single AGM.  This is in order to make sure that the election process is done correctly at your AGM, and that everyone feels able to vote freely and democratically.

At your AGM

You will need to make sure that you arrive for your AGM in the right place and at the right time so that you are there at the time and venue advertised.

You will also need your AGM to be quorate.  This means having enough students at your AGM to make it valid.  For AGMs to be valid there must be at least 10 students there.  These students don’t need to be members of your club or society.  However, if your club and society is small and, for example, only has a membership of 8 students, then you will need at least half of that membership there in order to make it valid.

Typical AGM structure
  • Apologies for absence
  • Outgoing committee report on previous year
  • Election of incoming signatories
  • Election of incoming non-signatory positions
The Election Process

The elected officer will be there to run the election process, and will also have a form that needs to be completed and signed by all newly elected students. 
Every society and club must have 3 elected signatories – if you don’t elect 3 signatories your club or society will go dormant.
There will be an opportunity for everyone who wants to stand for a particular position to speak to everyone present at the AGM and explain why they feel they would be the best person for the role.  The officer will ensure that candidates are given equal time to speak.  Candidates can also run for election at an AGM if they cannot attend, by asking someone else to represent them and read out a statement on their behalf.  It’s also possible to arrange for you to link up to the AGM via skype.

After everyone has spoken, candidates are asked to leave the room while voting takes place.  Voting is normally done by show of hands, but there are some incidents where a club or society has requested to use ballot papers.  Only full members of the Union can vote at AGMs – so it’s sometimes necessary to check that everyone voting is a full member, by checking campus cards – this is called a card vote.
After the election, ensure that all winners have provided their details to the election official, so that these can be logged online and with the Union.

After the AGM

Committee training takes place at the end of AGM season, so for some newly elected committee members, training might take place just a few days after you have been elected.  Your attendance is crucial so that you can understand how a club or society operates and your role in the committee.  Details of committee training are shared via club and society email addresses.

If you have any complaints regarding the way your AGM was conducted or any concerns about the process, you can email the VP Voice.

Emergency General Meeting (EGM)

If one of your signatory positions steps down during the academic year, you will need to host an EGM. Similar to the AGM, you will need to schedule an EGM by emailing Kath Phillips. After agreeing on a date and time for the EGM, one of the zone members will attend the election to ensure it is run fairly. If a non-signatory position steps down during the academic year, it is the responsibility of the club/society to re-elect this individual. You do not need an EGM, however, you must add any non-signatory member to the committee members list.

Committee Training

​Committee Training will occur at the end of the AGM season towards the end of the academic year. It typically lasts between 3 and 4 hours and occurs in the evening. Newly elected committee members are all required to attend (even if they were a committee member in previous years). The training will include the Annual Members Meeting (AMM) where students are informed and discuss upcoming changes within the Students’ Union that may affect them. Additionally, they vote on important topics, such as affiliations and budget distribution. After the AMM, committee members will break off into various sessions related to the perspective positions.

Club and society presidents must complete a further mandatory training module.

Sports clubs presidents must complete additional mandatory training regarding Team Surrey and the Surrey Sports Park.

While committee training covers all necessary topics for clubs and societies, we understand that there may be specific queries for individual clubs and societies. Please email Jodie Barnes to discuss this.

Sport & Society Standing

Sport and Society Standing typically occurs monthly at the beginning of the month for an hour. It is very important at least one signatory from each club/society attends to stay up-to-date on announcements and changes and also have a voice in which clubs and societies get ratified. Additionally, it is a gold STARS requirement for two members, one of which must be a signatory, to attend every meeting. If for any reason you cannot attend please send apologies before the meeting to ussu.socschair@surrey.ac.uk for societies, and ussu.ts.chair@surrey.ac.uk for clubs. Please note that even if you send apologies, your absence will be noted when scoring attendance for STARS.

Running Events

Checklist

  • Plan ahead
    • It is really important to plan ahead for your events as you never know what kind of challenges you may encounter.
    • Make sure you have committee members to take charge of the event and members to help run the event.
  • Book the space
    • If your event is on campus, book the space you require to guarantee you can run your event.
  • Contact and book any additional requirements
    • Catering, stage crew, tables, supplies, etc.
  • Complete any necessary paperwork
    • Risk assessments, trip forms, deposits, contracts, etc (see finance & contracts section for additional information)
  • Promote the event
    • See advertising below. Word of mouth is also very effective!
  • Run the event
    • Have fun and remember to smile
  • Clean up after the event
    • Very important to leave the space clean to leave a positive impression on the venue you used
  • Tie up loose ends
    • Sort out any finances, thank individuals who helped make the event happen

​Risk Assessment

It is mandatory for each event to have a risk assessment carried out.

Please read the risk assessment page on how to complete this.

Advertising

The Union provides a host of tools and opportunities to advertise your events.

We encourage the use of social media to reach as many students as possible, but we can help with getting greater outreach through our newsletter, calendar events and more! Check out our page on digital advertising with the union to see how you can advertise on the screens dotted around campus.

Bar Crawl

Before planning a bar crawl, please make sure you read through the bar crawl policy. Unlike most events where you have to submit a risk assessment for every event, you only need to submit a risk assessment for bar crawls once per academic year.

It is extremely important that you submit a bar crawl submission form for each bar crawl as we have to notify the police of the event. If you would like your event to include Rubix, please review the following Rubix Bar Crawl policy and contact Ian Handy

Barbeque

Please use the room booking form to book the barbeques.

Organizing Trips

If you are planning a trip or event off campus you must complete the appropriate forms below. In addition to your risk assessment, every trip needs a completed Trip Itinerary form and a full Participant List.

Day trips in the UK must also have a completed UK day trip form.

Day trips in the UK that have an overnight stay but have a completed UK residential overnight trip form.

If you are planning a trip abroad, you must contact us first to discuss this and allow us to approve the trip provider you are considering. Please email Jodie for any queries relating to trips.

Finance

All funds in each club and society account should never be paid into any personal bank accounts. Each club and society is provided with their own fund account allocated by the University of Surrey Students’ Union.

At any point in time, you can check your club’s or societies’ funds and budget via the bank statement portal.

Any finance questions, please email the finance office or call the finance office between 10am and 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Financial Transactions

Clubs and society signatories are able to request payments via our online portal found under committee resources in four different forms: cash, cheque, bank transfer, and credit card.

  • Depositing Money
    • Sage Pay Online
      • As committee members you can set up a payment group online via your USSU website to take collection of funds from members.
    • USSU Bank Account (own funds)
    • Cash
      • You may deposit cash directly into your own funds in the finance office Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm.
  • Creation of Invoices
    • Email the finance office stating who the invoice is to, how much the invoice is for, and the address.
    • Do not create your own invoices.
  • Grants from Zones
  • Purchase Orders
  • Banking Timeline
    • Cheques will be ready for collection on Friday’s if approved by 9am on Wednesday.
    • Bank transfers are made on a Tuesday and your request has to be approved by 9am on Monday – they take 2 working days to clear.
    • Cash will be ready for collection the next business day once approved.
    • Credit cards will be available for use immediately after approval, subject to availability and opening times.

Legal Assistance

It is required that all contracts and agreements are made known to the University of Surrey Students’ Union before signing. Please email Jodie Barnes for legal assistance in matters that directly affect clubs and societies such as contracts, agreements, sponsorship agreements, and terms and conditions.

Freshers & Refreshers Fairs

​Freshers fair occurs at the beginning of each academic year on the Friday of freshers week. Refreshers fair occurs within the first couple of weeks of semester two.

Stalls are very limited and are assigned on a first come first serve basis.

Typically, you can sign up for stalls through the stall request form.

Please direct all questions about stall bookings to Ian Handy.

STARS Award

We’ve got a whole page explaining STARS here.

Bookings

Room Bookings

Please use the room bookings form to request a room.

Supply Bookings

For all supplies, please email ussu.information@surrey.ac.uk to check availability and reserve the items. 

​Supplies Available

Subject to a deposit, indicated by the price in brackets.

  • DSLR Camera (£20)
  • Video Camera (£20)
  • GoPro Camera (£30)
  • 10L Catering Urn (£10)
  • Steve the Stag (£0)
  • High Vis Vests (£10)

Minibus Bookings

Driving Requirements

To be eligible to drive a Union minibus (MPV 9-seaters and transit van) you need to be 19 years of age or over and have held a full UK driving licence for a minimum of 12 months.

To drive the 14-seater minibuses you need to be 21 years of age and have held a full UK driving licence for two years.  For EU driving licence holders you must be 21 years or over with two years driving experience to be accepted onto our insurance.

If you meet the requirements, then complete the forms below (both must be filled in) and bring your driving licence to USSU reception to be photocopied for our records.  As counterparts have been scrapped by the Government, we require a check code generated from https://www.gov.uk/view-driving-licence so we can access your Driver Summary.

Driving Forms

Driver Application Form

Endsleigh Insurance NSF Form

Testing

Once you have completed the above paperwork and been approved by our insurer, you will be added to the mailing list to complete the minibus drivers test. For additional information please contact our transport team on ussu.transport@surrey.ac.uk

Vehicle Bookings

Please submit your form under vehicle request and direct any additional enquiries to ussu.transport@surrey.ac.uk.

Digital Resources

This section is incomplete and needs reviewing to be up to date.

If you have any questions relating to the website or digital operations, please email the Digital Experience team.

Inventory & Lockers

Inventory

Inventory forms are a part of your development plan. During the academic year you will also be asked to complete a second one to account for any changes in inventory. You will be contacted via your club/society email with instructions on submitting the form. Please pay close attention to deadlines.

Society Lockers

There are a limited number of lockers for societies. They are assigned on a first come first serve basis. Please email Jodie to organise a locker.

Sport Team Lockers

The majority of sport clubs are given space at Surrey Sports Park to keep their Equipment. This will be in a different format depending on what each Sport has in their inventory . e.g. Fencing Cages, Archery Shed, Hockey Cage.

Due to the high demand for storage space at SSP, all large items purchased through the budget need to be checked with the Operations staff before purchase to ensure there is space available to store the item. Space is allocated through Team Surrey and not through the Union. If a club requires a locker in addition to this, they will need to request this through the Union.

Key Contacts

Bar Crawl (only if it ends at Rubix)

James Barlow james.barlow@surrey.ac.uk

Club/Society Committee Concerns (grants, colours, varsity, student awards, etc.)

Awaiting Contact Details

Finance Queries

Finance ussu.finance@surrey.ac.uk

Room Bookings

Activity ussu.information@surrey.ac.uk

Rubix/Basement Queries (not bookings)

Jade Johnson jade.johnson@surrey.ac.uk

Societies

Jodie Barnes jodie.barnes@surrey.ac.uk

Stage Crew (lighting, technology, sound, staging, etc.)

Ian Lipp i.lipp@surrey.ac.uk

Volunteering

Ian Handy i.handy@surrey.ac.uk

Website Support

Digital Experience Team ussu.digital@surrey.ac.uk