on Internet connections.
• Hardware. Include a list of all computers and specify their age, operating system, size, speed, etc. Don’t
forget printers and other peripherals.
•;Desktop;Software. Make a note of all
the software that’s used individually
on staff computers, such as Microsoft Office, Adobe Acrobat, etc. Each
computer should be analyzed to
identify all programs, including any
that may have been added without
the knowledge and approval of IT
staff. For each program, determine
the current version, type of license,
and location of the original disc or
•;Global;Software. Create a list of all
the software that’s used throughout
the organization, or universally in
specific departments. The association management system (i.e. iMIS,
Microsoft CRM, etc.) and accounting
software are examples of global software. Determine the version, number
of licenses and related software,
such as report writers.
•;Website. Identify your content management system (CMS) and website
host, then determine how many user
licenses you own and the date your
site was last redesigned. Include any
Every strategic plan needs goals and
objectives. To develop yours, meet with
staff and find out what is working and
what is not, from an IT perspective. Ask
if there is something that would help
employees better do their jobs, being
careful not to promise a panacea. If
your association has completed, or is
planning to complete, a membership
needs assessment, there may be valuable information culled from the results
— especially related to online expectations — that also can help you set strategic IT priorities.
Also, discover IT opportunities by
determining what solutions currently
exist in the way of hardware and soft-
ware for your industry. Find out, for
example, if there are new versions of
software that you use and, if so, how
much longer your current versions are
supported, as well as what features are
available in the upgrades. If there is a
need for new software, conduct prelimi-
nary research to find out what programs
are available and their potential costs.
It is critical that you also find out what
software and hardware are compatible
with the upgrades you are considering.
For example, will an upgrade of your
association management system work
with your current operating systems, or
with future operating system upgrades?
Before coming up with IT recommendations, you need an IT philosophy that
describes the criteria you’ll use to make
decisions about IT investments and
improvements. Impacting your philosophy are available resources — financial
and staffing — membership needs and
functional necessity. The philosophy
can be stated either in a single statement or as a list of statements.
Like many organizations today, Association Management Center
recognizes that social media tools play a valuable and important role
in associations. We’ve produced two guides to help associations and
their staff get started with social media.
A Trus Ted PAr Tner for More ThAn YeArs
Visit connect2amc.com today to download our free publications,
The Why and How of Social Media and Best Practices in Social Media.
For more information about implementing social media within your
organization, e-mail Marilyn Jansen at
or call 847.375.4811.
Follow us on
www.connect2amc.com or visit us at