Preparing for a long-term move to a remote workforce

Jeff Golembiewski

June 10, 2020

    Using a modern association management software (AMS) system gives your staff the tools they need work efficiently no matter where they are.

    Here’s what to look for in an AMS system to help ensure your staff is working as productively as possible, whether at home or in the office.

    Like many organizations, your association might have sent some or all employees home to work for the last couple of months. Many companies are now asking: Is this the new normal? Should we allow employees to stay remote long-term?

    A recent article in Associations Now about remote work offers several considerations that might influence your association’s answer to the question, including:

    • Some employees like working from home more than others.
    • People working at home are only slightly less productive (a study cited in the article found only an average 1 to 2 percent decrease in productivity among remote employees).
    • Long-term remote work will require long-term adjustments, including creating appropriate methodologies, using certain technologies, and launching training.

    To that last point, technology can make a big difference in making your remote workforce (as well as in-office staff for that matter) more productive. For example, using a modern association management software (AMS) system will ensure you have the tools you need for your staff to work efficiently, whether they’re at home or in the office.

    Key AMS features to help with digital transformation

    True cloud software, with mobile access

    By definition, users access cloud-based software online, with no need to be in the same location as the software itself. Modern cloud-based software also ensures that every customer is on the latest solution, with the latest product upgrades. This means that everyone in your organization can access the data and functionality they need.

    A modern AMS also allows you to access your organization’s data securely, from any computer or mobile device. This is especially helpful for remote employees or employees who are always on the go.

    Collaboration tools

    Ensuring your team can continue to communicate and collaborate no matter where they’re located is another important aspect of working efficiently in a remote work situation. It’s important to ensure you have an AMS system that easily integrates with communication and collaboration tools or has some tools baked right in. 

    Process automation

    In today’s evolving world, workflow automation has taken on even more significance for associations. It’s increasingly important to automate as many manual processes as possible – such as application processes, email communications to members, membership renewal, and reporting. This not only allows your staff to spend more time creating great member experiences, but it also reduces the likelihood of human error the is common in manual tasks.

    Artificial intelligence (AI)

    Artificial intelligence technologies, like chatbots, can help your association work more efficiently while boosting member satisfaction. For example, you can automate aspects of member service, such as answering/assisting with common questions or renewing a membership, via a chatbot to provide immediate response 24/7 and free up staff time for more complex tasks.

    However, if chatbots aren’t something you’re ready for, consider a live chat tool. This can be a great opportunity to help members when answering the office phone isn’t an option.

    The Association's Guide to All Things Salesforce

    Three questions to ask potential vendors when selecting a Salesforce-based AMS

    What’s next?

    When it comes down to it, you might end up taking a hybrid approach to remote work: Some employees stay remote, some go into the office, and some alternate depending on the day of the week.

    Whichever way you go, a modern AMS system and integrated tech stack will help ensure your staff is working as efficiently and productively as possible.

    How Nimble AMS supports a remote workforce

    Nimble AMS is a cloud-based association management software (AMS) system built on the Salesforce platform. Not only can your employees access important member data and processes remotely from any device, but also members can engage with your organization – doing things like paying dues and updating their member profile from their mobile devices.

    Nimble AMS also enables your team to leverage Salesforce Chatter to collaborate on any member record, Salesforce Einstein AI technology for chatbots, and Salesforce Process Builder for automation.

    “We would not be functional at IHRSA today during this disruption had we not replaced our legacy AMS with Nimble AMS two years ago. We are able to stay connected to our team and our members like never before.”

    – Anita Horne-Lawlor, Chief Operating Officer, International Health Racquet and Sportsclub Association

    Related content

    [Blog] Real-world lessons in the painful consequences of outdated software 

    [Blog] Practical tips to prepare your association for virtual work

    Learn more about how Nimble AMS can help your association’s staff manage the organization no matter where they are. 

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