The digital world is a place some of your members have yet to enter; where some of your staff won’t dare to go. But your organization can’t afford to avoid a digital transformation altogether just because some among your trade or professional association aren’t ready for change.
Why can’t you wait any longer to enter the digital world? Because you can’t afford to miss out on any chance for non-dues revenue. Or because you never know when an industry-wide economic challenge could impact your membership. So you’ll need the tools in place to help navigate the ever-changing landscape that is association management.
In this blog post, we’ll concisely answer the following questions:
- Why should your association embrace a digital transformation?
- How can you use technology to advance your mission and improve the member experience?
- Which tech solutions can help transform your association?
Why Embrace the Digital Transformation?
First, let’s state the obvious: technology is never going to be your association’s greatest asset. The people are — meaning your staff and members.
That idea was unpacked further in a recent white paper from Microsoft and NetHope entitled, “The New Imperative of Nonprofit Digital Transformation.”
“What you need is a means to transform the way your organization works, so you can do far more with the resources that are available. Technology has extraordinary power, but technology alone is not the answer. Adopting a well thought out digital strategy that connects your people, processes and technology can accelerate your impact to serve your constituencies and realize your mission.”
In a nutshell, until your association fully embraces a digital transformation, none of the tech tools at your disposal can be fully functional and effective.
How Can You Embrace a Digital Transformation?
- Put staff and members in position for success by providing them simple, intuitive systems to use
- Make sure your entire team understands the value of this strategic shift
- Provide onboarding training for staff to familiarize themselves with new tools and software
- Find technology vendors who will serve as a partner rather than a sales and marketing machine
- Prioritize initiatives and tackle one challenge at a time
Which Solutions Will Make Change Easiest?
While member engagement is critical, it’s your employee-facing systems which facilitate strong engagement.
But before you just pick any old tech to drive your digital transformation, here’s what the Microsoft and NetHope white paper suggests you should know:
“What’s needed is for the entire organization to take a step back, evaluate its approach to IT and invest in a longer-term strategy that connects people, process and technology in such a way that each project builds on past successes to deliver even greater impact.”
For your association, you might need the following:
- The ability to manage as many essential association functions as possible through one system
- Software that’s made to grow and improve alongside your association
- Something intuitive, so that people actually use it, but functional enough that it’s generating value
That’s why CRM-based association management software has become so well-regarded in recent years. It brings the seemingly never-ending capabilities of products made by some of the largest tech companies on earth together with the association-specific tools you’ve come to expect.
And at the top of the class in 2018, according to CRM Magazine, is Microsoft’s enterprise CRM suite.
Want to learn more about an AMS built on Microsoft Dynamics 365? Take Alliance by Protech association management software for a test drive today.