Every association has different requirements for accounting, event management, membership renewal, and more. Your software solution should address your association’s specific needs.
To know what features you need to look for, task your team with creating a list of these needs. A SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) can provide a great structure to keep brainstorming conversations on track.
But don’t just rely on what your team members have to say. Task the team with soliciting feedback from other members and staff through:
- Focus groups: Provide some questions to get participants started, but leave plenty of time for participants to bring up other ideas if they think of something you didn’t.
- Interviews: Instead of just asking interviewees what they want in a software solution, come prepared with real-world examples of situations they might encounter and ask what software features would be helpful in those situations.
- Surveys: Start surveys with a few multiple choice questions and ask open-ended questions at the end. That way, busy participants who can’t finish the survey will still have time to give you some feedback.
The resulting list of needs (and wants) can easily end up long and cumbersome. But don’t count anything out yet — you never know what a vendor can make happen for your association.