Good Reads You Might Have Missed: Go Deeper With Your AMS

Thinking beyond the basic functionality of your AMS will help you expand what it can do for your association. Here are a few places to start.


You might know how to use your association management system (AMS), but do you really know how to use it to expand the capabilities of your association?

Association pros would obviously benefit from maximizing their AMS—and with that in mind, here are a few pieces from the Associations Now and archives to help you expand your mindset about what’s possible.

Membership Software: What Associations Should Keep in Mind. This primer on all things membership software should give you a starting point for what an AMS or MMS can do, as well as what it should have to maximize your association’s experience with the tool. “Many AMS platforms have both user-facing and employee-facing portions, and a bad experience with either could be a deterrent to both members and staff,” the piece states. “As a result, associations must prioritize user experience.”

How to Make the Most of Your Member Needs Assessment. In this piece, Melissa Teates, CAE, formerly principal at Worthwhile Research, makes the case for conducting a member assessment with all the tools you have—including the data on members from your AMS, or other software tools. “It is still worth looking at what events members attend, which webinars they register for and actually view, who is certified, how many serve on committees or in other volunteer roles, and what past surveys have revealed,” Teates wrote. “This will help clarify which members are highly involved with the association and what member involvement looks like.”

A Website Redesign Boosts Member Engagement, Retention, and Value. This January piece describes how the Auto Care Association came to make updates to its content management system, as well as its AMS, to build a stronger website with more room for personalization. “There needs to be a really good alignment between what the association wants, what the critical business needs are, and ultimately understanding what users are hoping for,” said Nathaly Branham, ACA’s web manager.

Why Your AMS Is Only One Piece of the Digital Member Experience Puzzle. In this piece, consultants Beth Power and Chris Gloede break down the need to turn an AMS platform into something of a foundation for the full tech stack. “Analytics and integration are now as foundational as your AMS,” they wrote.

Stop Kicking the Can Down the Road: The Dangers of Technical Debt. Running a good technology stack, including an AMS, does no good if it’s not updated at a regular clip. In a piece highlighting a session at the 2019 ASAE Technology Exploration Conference, Matrix Group “Chief Maxximizer” Tanya Kennedy Luminati and chief technology officer Maki Kato break down the considerations association pros should have around updating their systems. “No one wants to get a new AMS or change their CMS if everything is going great and it’s up to date,” Luminati said during the event.

(AntonMatveev/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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