When it comes to technology solutions for associations, success lies in ample research and a proactive approach.
Technology is meant to make life effortless but it creates serious headaches if it’s not properly researched and implemented. In particular, technology solutions for associations can be complicated given the tight resources and limited funding that’s usually available in the non-profit space. For membership organizations, technology success requires that it effectively supports the mission while also responding to evolving member needs.
That’s a tall order, so here are five keys to help you make the most of your hard-earned tech investment.
1. March to your own drummer.
Organizations in every industry are guilty of routinely buying the latest software in an effort to follow emerging trends. In the tech environment, there’s no room for keeping up with the Joneses. Rather than investing in additional software with every new release, a better strategy is to thoroughly examine your goals and then determine what technology is needed to meet them. Only after you have fully assessed your organizational needs and identified the appropriate tech solutions should you invest in additional software.
2. Consider the long haul.
There’s no getting around the fact that your AMS will be costly. It may take up the lion’s share of your IT budget. Plus, there’s the expense of implementation, as well as annual maintenance and subscription costs to consider. Despite the large investment, don’t make the mistake of valuing short-term savings over long-term benefits. Skimping on an essential system component is never wise because your membership’s level of satisfaction will ultimately suffer. This holds true for all fundamental technologies so keep your eye on the prize.
3. Say farewell to data silos.
Your technology should help you create a remarkable, seamless member journey. Period. If you’re working with disjointed technologies operating independently, you aren’t getting much value from them. You may have lots of pricey, high-tech tools at your disposal, but if they aren’t fully sharing the all-important member data, they’re falling short. Let’s say you have a great AMS, a sophisticated marketing automation tool, and a comprehensive LMS but aren’t seeing the results you hoped for. Are these world-class systems cooperating with each other? Before you invest in additional technologies, assess your current level of integration. Is there a viable upgrade path, whether cloud or on-premise? Sometimes upgrading existing technologies to facilitate integration is necessary to get the results you’re seeking.
4. Keep flexibility in mind.
They say the only constant in life is change. If your membership experiences sudden growth or a rapid decline, how will it affect the cost of your existing technologies? Will you be faced with substantial expenses for additional capacity or be required to pay for space you no longer need? As you consider technology solutions, look for those that can be readily scaled according to your usage. Cloud-based systems typically offer superior flexibility, allowing users to easily move across subscription levels to meet changing needs.
5. Don’t get mired in the past.
It’s common for non-profits and associations to take the path of least resistance, adhering to the same processes simply because ‘that’s how things have always been done’. This is your opportunity to move beyond the same old, same old. Get away from being reactive and investing in tech when it’s absolutely necessary to replace or upgrade outdated infrastructure. Instead, adopt a mindset of transformation. Make savvy, forward-thinking technology investments that will propel your organization to the forefront.
From collaborating with team members to communicating with constituents, today’s technology solutions for associations must be robust multitaskers. To maintain your organization’s competitive edge in the future, it requires rigorous decision-making processes and a proactive approach to your tech investments.
IBC understands the obstacles facing non-profits like yours and we’re here to help! Our team of seasoned experts will answer your questions and optimize your technology to overcome your biggest challenges. Please contact our friendly professionals to get started.
About IBC: At IBC, we have a deep understanding of the critical business needs and processes specific to associations, non-profits, and unions. We ‘get’ your culture, your goals, and what drives you, too. Focused exclusively on and dedicated to delivering the most effective AMS , LMS , and Cloud Financial Software for our clients, we’re well-versed in identifying and applying the integration techniques that will save you time and money. Since 2001, our cutting-edge products, unparalleled responsiveness, and award-winning services have helped organizations like yours increase their operational and financial performance by leveraging best practices and proven solutions. For more information about IBC, please visit the website at www.ibconcepts.com or call 443.603.0215.