What to Look for in an Association Technology Solutions Partner

Looking for the right association technology solutions? Start by finding a partner you can trust
Looking for the right association technology solutions? Start by finding a partner you can trust

Sometimes, all you need is a push. A helping hand. A guide. Someone to help you achieve more. That’s definitely true when it comes to association technology solutions.

Not just association technology solutions, really, but it’s true with tech in general. We’ve all tried to learn something new (remember the first time you logged online?), but without some help, you might never maximize the endless possibilities made available to you.

So how do you find a partner who will help you get your biggest bang for your buck on your next major project? Here are a few tips to make that selection process easier.

Finding the Perfect Association Technology Solutions

1 – Look for a Coach or a Teacher

It’s a whole lot easier to learn something new when you’re driven to. When it’s flashy, exciting or easy. But what about the things that sound exhausting or time-consuming to learn? The stuff which would be useful to know, but you feel like the ends don’t justify the means.

Let’s face it: mastering a new email marketing platform or learning management system isn’t exactly the most exciting thing in the world. It’s not like learning a musical instrument or becoming an awesome surfer. You’re not going to impress many people at your next dinner party with “cool” stories about that automated marketing campaign you set up.

That’s why you need a good teacher, or a good coach.

Did you ever have that one great teacher who challenged you to try something new? Or a coach who pushed you to perfect your jump shot (“practice makes permanent,” an old coach of this blog’s author used to say)? Your association technology solutions partner should provide you with plenty of those resources: someone to challenge you to maximize your use of their product.

2 – Find Someone Stable

So you just bought a shiny new toy for your association. Great! That’s awesome! Fast forward two years into your contract, and that product is no longer supported to the fullest extent because the vendor was swallowed up by a competitor (or worse, just disappears for good).

Think of it this way: you could’ve purchased a Saturn in 2009, but you definitely would’ve been better off with that tried and true Ford. Yeah, you could’ve snatched up Steve Jobs’ NeXTstation, but you’d have been better off sticking with something operating on Windows.

Be careful when it comes to new. Consider this comment from Information Age:

“Businesses who have been around longer are more likely to last the test of time and be around to offer support and upgrades in the years to come.”

3 – Partner with a Vendor Who Gets Your Association

Each association is unique. Ask almost any association executive. That means your association probably shouldn’t just partner with any old association technology solutions vendor.

Check out what Business.com says on the matter:

“The client-vendor relationship is crucial in any project. While you may want to outsource the software development project to a ‘yes-man,’ avoid doing that at all costs. An idea development partner is the one who knows when to say no.”

Final Thoughts

It won’t be easy to find the perfect tech partner for your association. But, at the very least, make sure your choice:

  1. Is ready to challenge you to maximize the benefits of their product
  2. Has been, and will be, around for the long-haul
  3. Gets your association’s challenges and goals