Make sure your association doesn’t pay the price for outdated software.
When you think about the software that helps you manage your association, it can be tempting to keep using the same old legacy association management software (AMS) you’ve been using and continue inefficient processes you’ve been practicing for years and years. After all, it’s “the way we’ve always done it”, and you “don’t need to fix what’s not broken”. Sound familiar?
But, your organization, the industry, and the world are changing. How will your organization keep up? Have you considered how the technology decisions you make today will affect your association’s future? What consequences will your organization’s “future self” face because of the choices your association makes today?
Your old-school AMS and disjointed processes may not be totally “broken”, but they sure are deteriorating.
Paying the price for a legacy AMS system
Your old-school software can become extremely costly and inefficient over time, affecting your organization’s ability to succeed in the future. Consider the following ways your association might pay the price for staying on outdated software:
With older software, you might pay as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars for each product upgrade. In addition, customizing legacy software as your needs change often requires hiring a developer or re-engaging your software vendor. Paying for these types of software development services can become especially expensive when customizing complex processes.
There’s more: Customizing legacy software often involves modifying the source code. And these modifications can “break” when the product is upgraded to a new version. Those breaks might require your organization to pay even more for your customizations to be modified to work with the latest version of the software. This cycle will continue as more and more upgrades become available.
Over time, these expenses add up. Every day, you’re spending more dollars the association could be investing in member engagement initiatives, additional staff, etc.
Outdated software doesn’t offer the efficiencies and capabilities of today’s solutions – such as process automation, artificial intelligence, mobile accessibility, and an intuitive interface. These deficiencies can make it difficult for staff to do their work – especially when working from home has become common and has the potential to become the norm long-term.
Another related side effect from using outdated software: You might lose more employees faster as they seek to work at organizations with more modern software that makes their jobs easier and gives them more marketable skills. This means spending additional time and money to onboard their replacement and get them up to speed.
Poor member experience
When staff members are spending more time struggling to use outdated software, they’re spending less time delivering member value. They are probably also frustrated and annoyed, which, whether they mean to or not, can be passed along to members they engage with.
At the same time, old systems are less reliable and lack modern capabilities that members have come to expect in their everyday lives. Your members look to your organization to enhance their lives and provide benefits they can’t get elsewhere. If you are making it difficult to utilize these benefits, what reason does the member have to stick with you?
Leaving a positive legacy for your association
Once you factor in the downsides of continuing to use a legacy AMS system, it’s clearly time to make a change. Moving to a modern AMS system today will set up your organization for a strong tomorrow. Consider an AMS that includes:
- A continuous stream of product upgrades, so you’re always using the latest technology without downtime and extra expenses
- Process automation and a modern, easy-to-use interface, so you can streamline complex business processes and make it easier for staff to focus on delivering a great member experience
- The ability to deliver a highly-personalized, mobile-friendly member experience using artificial intelligence, reports and dashboards, and easy integration with online learning and career center resources
Take the next step
Don’t let your legacy AMS be the legacy you leave your organization. Here are some resources to help you shift from your outdated software to more modern technology:
- Convince your board it’s time to approve budget for new association technology. Read the paper, Gaining Board Approval for Technology Budget
- How do you know when your AMS system is preventing you from innovating and evolving as an organization? Read this guide to find out: Future-Forward AMS