Doncaster Rovers’ reputation for providing successful consultation with its supporters has continued to attract further interest from other Football League clubs.
Rovers’ development of the supporter liaison officer (SLO) role has seen the club become a shining example nationally for other teams to follow.
Lee Croft and Mark Hughesman were appointed SLOs in the summer ahead of the current season and both recently gave a presentation about their roles to officials at Bolton Wanderers FC ahead of Rovers’ recent game at the Reebok Stadium.
Rovers are one of the first in the country to appoint supporters into the position who are volunteers and not employees of the club. It has been praised by the Football Supporters’ Federation for the way it has developed the position as it is one of the first in the Football League to adopt the original model established by UEFA.
Lee said: “By being independent and impartial, the supporter liaison officer can ensure the voices of both the fans and the club are heard. Since starting the role it has come into its own and really has had a successful impact.
“We were invited by Bolton’s SLO to a focus group meeting which was attended by around 20 other people, including the club’s senior management and supporters. They seemed very interested in our approach and how successfully it had been implemented at Rovers. “
Shaun Lockwood, communications manager at Doncaster Rovers, added: “We want to build a culture where the club and supporters are together as one. The SLOs provide information and guidance to supporters and the club’s management, allowing a conduit of two-way communication between the two.
“We are pleased that big clubs such as Bolton are taking note of how we are doing things at Doncaster Rovers and are looking at us as an example of best practice.”
A UEFA directive made SLOs mandatory for all clubs to be created and act as a bridge between the fans and the club to improve dialogue between the two.
The SLO informs fans about relevant decisions made by the club and communicates the points of view of fans. It also aims to build relationships between various fan groups, the police and security officers.
For more information on the supporter liaison officer (SLO) role firstname.lastname@example.org