Important areas of functionality to consider from AMS vendors when shopping for new association software.

The AMS you choose will determine if you’ll have the tools necessary to meet these demands – today, and in the future. Here are some important things to consider as you narrow downy our list of vendors.

When it comes to selecting new association management software (AMS), you’re about to make a big decision – a financial one, and also one that affects your association’s future. You have members to keep happy, expectations to meet, and a mission to serve. The AMS you choose will determine if you’ll have the tools necessary to meet these demands – today, and in the future. 

Here are some important areas of functionality to consider as you narrow your list of AMS vendors. 

Member engagement 

A robust AMS can make all the difference when it comes to how well you engage with your members and how great their experiences are with your organization. Look for an AMS that:  

  • Gives you a comprehensive, 360-degree view of your membership 
  • Provides a responsive user interface and portal for a mobile and modern experience that meets and exceeds members’ expectations 
  • Allows you to automate manual tasks and help your staff members work more productively

A robust AMS can make all the difference when it comes to how well you engage with your members and how great their experiences are with your organization

Reporting

You need to use data to make informed decisions, and your AMS should help you do just that. Ask the AMS vendors about their capabilities around dashboards, advanced reporting and scheduled reports. 

Integration

When shopping for an AMS, a key feature to examine is how much integration it allows with other applications. Look closely at your association’s engagement, retention and revenue goals and existing technology to assess what integrations you might need or want to add in the future. Ask questions about what integrations the AMS can handle, and if the company has any strategic relationships or partnerships with businesses that might offer you a price break. Also, be sure to ask the AMS provider about its approach to web services, and what options are available for integrations such as single sign-on, learning management systems and event management. 

Configuration 

It’s important that the system you choose suits your staff needs and best serves your members. You may find that a platform with configurable modules meets your needs, or you may have a more sophisticated IT/developer staff that wants to configure or develop on its own. Ask the AMS provider how each product area (such as event management, fundraising, member portal, etc.) can be configured to meet your organization’s requirements. 

When shopping for an AMS, a key feature to examine is how much integration it allows with other applications.
 

Selecting the right AMS can take your association to the next level and ensure your success for years to come. Be sure to do your homework, and you’ll be on your way to making the most effective choice for your association.  


Andy Sheppard is a Senior Manager of Product Management, Enterprise Products, Membership Solutions, Community Brands 

Buyer’s Guide for Large Associations

Learn more about choosing the right software for your association with this guide.