Editor’s Note: Why Another Tech Issue?

Even though tech is everywhere these days, it’s still an important topic to focus on for associations.

Each year, when the time rolls around to plan our annual issue focusing on technology, I wonder: Do we really still need a technology issue? In 2018, technology permeates everything associations do—from membership and meetings to communications and business operations—meaning you’ll find tech stories in every issue of Associations Now. And, of course, tech tools facilitate a long list of the everyday activities in our personal lives, so much so that it’s hard to imagine there was a time when we didn’t have them.

But I always come around. Because even so fully woven into the fabric of our lives that we almost forget it’s there, technology is an ever more essential and more varied element of association management, particularly for organizations pursuing a mission in a faster, more competitive world. Each year, we find new tech success stories to tell, along with fresh challenges to explore.

What are the challenges this year? In the “What’s keeping you up at night?” category, the answer is clear: cybersecurity. Association executives are still feeling unprepared for the almost-inevitable data breach. But as Tim Ebner reports, there are ways to bolster your defenses and to ensure that when a breach happens, you’re in a better position to respond. Another challenge comes from within, when you need your team to adapt to new technology systems. In Maria Mihalik’s story, find out how associations are helping staff overcome their fear of change and embrace the tools they need to get the job done.

(Of course, many recent sleepless nights surely can be traced to the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation, whose compliance date arrived when this issue was going to press. If you missed our story on getting your organization aligned with GDPR in the March/April issue, it’s worth going back.)

And what about success stories? We were curious about the many ways that associations are getting into the app game. So much depends on the member need that they’re trying to meet. Alex Beall found some cool examples. Enjoy.

(alxpin/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Julie Shoop

By Julie Shoop

Julie Shoop is the Editor-in-Chief of Associations Now. MORE

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