Give your members the professional education experience they expect

Are your association’s learning opportunities keeping up with the competition? 

Read on to learn more about how to step up your learning program to deliver more of what members want. 


By Christine Bergeron, Marketing Coordinator, Community Brands



In the 2021 Association Trends Study by Community Brands, two thirds of members who responded to the study’s survey (Members) say they are required to take professional education and training courses to comply with industry standards. Of those, most turn to their employer or their professional organization for education and training.  

But here are a couple of catches: 

  • Other sources for education and training are close behind.
  • When asked about the quality of training, Members give their professional organization a so-so rating compared with other sources. 

What do members want when it comes to professional education?
The study’s findings show that members are interested in more learning modalities than their organization currently offers. This suggests an opportunity for professional membership organizations to provide more learning options for their members. 

So, what do members want? Members say they are interested in a wide variety of professional education and training opportunities, including: 

  • Webcasts of live events 
  • On-demand learning  
  • Mobile learning 
  • Just-in-time learning 
  • Short videos 
  • Recommended courses 
  • Social learning 

TIP: YourMembership association management software has built in education credit tracking to make it easier for staff to automatically award credit for learning opportunities.

How to deliver more of the learning opportunities your members want.
With members looking for a variety of online options for their learning needs, it’s important to find ways to easily deliver more professional on-demand content. Some ideas to consider: 

Ask your members what they want and need.  
For example, send a survey asking your members what types of professional education they’re seeking. Do they need more leadership development training? What about soft skills, such as interpersonal communication and time management skills? You can also ask them about their preferences in terms of length and modalities of learning sessions.  

TIP: YourMembership association management software has survey functionality built in, making it easy to build and send targeted surveys and get feedback. 

Revisit your learning topics. 
Based on survey feedback, review your continuing education and training courses to see how topics and learning modes align with what your members need. Develop a plan to fill in any gaps and adjust any existing courses to deliver more of what your members expect.

Invest in technology.
Delivering on-demand content to learners can be a challenge for associations with small staffs. Consider investing in an online learning software platform that allows you to provide an engaging learning experience through a single platform. This type of investment can deliver multiple benefits to your organization, including:

  • Improving member value – You can provide more value by helping your members to achieve their career goals.    
  • Efficiently manage content – You can manage, track, organize, store, and deliver on-demand content more efficiently.
  • Driving non-dues revenue – You can increase revenue by turning your content into a year-round revenue generator.  

Learn more.
Even with a small staff, your association can
deliver more of what your members wantJoin YourMembership for the 
Do’s and Don’ts of Member Benefits webinar on November 16 at 11:30am ET. 

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