When you’re moving to a new association management software (AMS) system, having the right project team in place makes all the difference.
You need the team’s input and support as you select and configure the new solution, streamline business processes along the way, and roll out the new AMS to the entire organization. How do you make sure you assemble the group it takes to get the job done right?
How to build your project team when choosing a new AMS
1. Identify the employees & users not on your team
That might be a strange place to start, but just think about it: Your AMS system is the software you use to manage all aspects of your association. So, it makes sense that you need input and buy-in on the project from diverse audiences.
In addition to the core team that initiated the project, include executives, business users, and IT users to ensure you have representation from across the organization. Also, include both junior and senior employees to get different perspectives.
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2. Identify the number one goal for the AMS project.
As a team, determine your number one goal for the project. For example:
- Is it hitting a specific deadline most important?
- Or, is it meeting a specific budget number?
- Or, perhaps addressing staff and member needs for specific functionality?
All of these goals might be worthwhile to the team, but it’s still important to identify the single most significant goal for the organization. You can work other goals around it, but having a number one goal helps rally the team around a common cause and guide decisions throughout the implementation process.
3. Keep the project team focused on the goal.
Consider this all-too-common scenario: An association is implementing a new AMS system. The chief financial officer has an aggressive deadline for implementation so that the organization can end contracts with their old systems and save money. At the same time, business users are comfortable with the systems and processes they’ve been using for years. They’re having a hard time moving forward.
As a result, they pile on more requirements to try to replicate the “old way” of doing business (even though the whole point of moving to the new AMS is to operate more efficiently). Meanwhile, the IT team is stuck in the middle – trying to balance the needs of leaders who want to move faster and business users who want to slow down.
Avoid this situation by continually reinforcing with your team the importance of moving toward a single goal. With everyone in alignment, your AMS project will have the foundation in place for success.
Choose a vendor that understands the implementation process
Choosing an AMS vendor that offers a thoughtful approach to implementation will make a big difference in the success of your new solution. For example, the Nimble AMS team builds best practices into the implementation process to make sure you get the most out of your new system right away. Also, if needed, ask your AMS vendor to help align your team and create change management programs to overcome resistance to and improve satisfaction with the new technology.