What associations can learn by following the leading CRM, Salesforce.
Does your AMS follow the ideal product upgrade model set forth by Salesforce, the leader in customer relationship management? It should. Here’s why.
Organizations often struggle with the costs and risks involved with upgrading their association management software (AMS). Those challenges typically include:
- Paying as much as tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars for each upgrade
- Waiting years between upgrades due to availability and costs, resulting in outdated software
- Dealing with broken integrations after upgrades, resulting in system downtime and requiring new, costly software customizations
So, it’s easy to understand why many associations are moving to cloud-based AMS systems that include continuous upgrades. It’s a painless way to have the latest features and functionality at no added expense.
It’s also one of the many reasons Nimble AMS is built on the Salesforce platform.
Looking to the leader for the ideal product upgrade model
Salesforce is the leader in customer relationship management (CRM) in part because it includes three upgrades per year with its service. Salesforce customers are always using the latest in technology advances, without hassle and extra costs.
And, because the Salesforce platform is a true cloud-based system, all customers access the same version of the solution. The cloud model makes it much easier for Salesforce to release new and innovative features. There’s only one version to support and maintain, so Salesforce can concentrate on delivering features versus maintaining older versions of the software.
The benefits of included product upgrades for associations
For associations, using a Salesforce-based AMS system, like Nimble AMS, means they can take advantage of all the benefits of this ideal product upgrade model. These benefits include:
Lower cost: AMS upgrades can cost as much as $300,000 (sometimes more) on top of the initial fees for implementing the system. They’re sometimes so financially painful that associations stop implementing them altogether and try to get by with outdated software. With upgrades included in the AMS service, there are no added fees for technology updates.
Simplified budgeting: In addition to deciding on whether to fund the costs of AMS upgrades, as budget season rolls around and planning begins, associations have other technology decisions to make, such as whether or not to:
- Replace failing hardware
- Upgrade server operating systems
- Implement a new firewall
- Update the organization’s desktop productivity suite
These critical business decisions are vastly simplified when they’re consolidated into a single AMS solution with a payment that’s easy to forecast year after year.
Continuous delivery: Continuous delivery is a method in which software developers keep producing valuable software code in short cycles so it can be reliably released to customers at any time. This approach goes hand-in-hand with the included product upgrade model. It has been used for many years in the for-profit world but is newer to the nonprofit and association world.
In fact, Nimble AMS is the only enterprise-level AMS to offer continuous delivery. Using this method, the Nimble AMS team provides a continuous stream of upgrades and innovation so customers are always using the same version of the latest technology. Associations can even see the latest product release date on the Nimble AMS listing on the Salesforce AppExchange.
An example from the real world
Missouri State Teachers Association (MSTA) is a professional association serving more than 44,000 educators and is dedicated to educating the state’s teachers. Membership is comprised of professional educators, associates, retired teachers, and students.
MSTA’s previous AMS did not meet its growing needs and expectations, and the association spent tens of thousands of dollars on outside consultants and support to prevent system breaks with each upgrade. Since the organization’s move to Nimble AMS, MSTA Executive Director
Bruce Moe says: “We have never had such painless upgrade paths to new technology. I can now spend money on items that add member value. It’s liberating.”
Is your association ready to upgrade your upgrades?
Since Nimble AMS follows the upgrade model set forth by Salesforce, Nimble AMS customers no longer have to endure the costly break/fix cycle of upgrades, patches, and hardware replacement. Does your AMS support the ideal product upgrade model? Learn more about how an AMS built on Salesforce can help.
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