by Callie Walker
Adopting new technology — whether it’s a membership management system, a learning management system, a conference app, or something else entirely — is exciting! Think about all the new capabilities you’re about to have. And not just you, but your members as well. (Remember, software empowers them too.)
But, before launching that new technology, it is important to communicate that shift to your members — especially if the software you’re adopting is member-facing.
To reduce (and hopefully, eliminate) any confusion, we highly recommend abiding by the following best practices:
1. Give them ample notice
No one likes to be caught off guard, so if possible, try giving your members a little “heads up.” How early you give that heads up and how often you repeat it all depends on how drastic of a technology rollout it is. If you’re implementing a new membership management system and that’ll impact the look of your membership website, that’s a shift worth communicating early and often — because that directly impacts the member experience.
But in a good way! Which is why you’ll also want to…
2. Explain the benefits
You didn’t decide to get a new software solution just to get a new software solution. You likely got it because it’ll help you and your staff out AND improve your members’ overall experience. So, let your members know that! Going back to the example of the membership management system upgrade, will that make registering for events and paying invoices online easier? If so, let those improvements be known! (Particularly if you’ve received complaints about those functions in the past.)
And don’t forget to show enthusiasm! Enthusiasm is contagious, and if you’re excited, your members will feel that and, hopefully, get excited too!
3. Provide them with a point of contact
As with any type of change, questions are inevitable, so be proactive by providing your members with a point of contact. Let them know you’re ready and available to answer any questions and/or address any concerns they may have. Sometimes just having a point of contact is comforting.
It’s also not a bad idea to encourage your members to provide feedback as well, whether that’s through a designated contact or a form on your website. Asking for your members’ feedback shows that you genuinely care about their experience with your organization, and that this technology adoption or software switch wasn’t just for you and your staff…it was for them too!
Ok, let’s back up for a second. Before you even get to the point of telling your members about a new software system, you need to find something that both you and your members will love. Check out our free guide below for questions you NEED to ask when software shopping — to find that perfect fit!