Offer an online career center to stay relevant with your association’s members

Looking to stay relevant with your association’s members? Here’s how an online career center can help.   

How can you stay significant in the lives of your association’s members in today’s changing world? One powerful approach is to offer an online career center. 

Association industry research from Community Brands indicates that job opportunities and career development resources are continually among the most important member benefits. Offering an online career center is an effective and convenient way to provide the career opportunities and resources your members are seeking – making it easier for you to continually attract, engage, and retain members. 

What is an online career center for associations? 

An online career center is a kind of online career portal. It’s a one-stop place for your members and prospective members to search for and find jobs and resources to move their careers forward.  

What should your association’s online career center include? 

In short, a robust online career center for an association should include an online job board plus career planning resources, including career content, career coaching, career insights, a career pathing tool, and a mentor board.  

Let’s look at each of these elements in more detail.

An online job board

An online job board allows job seekers in your industry to search and apply for relevant job opportunities online. It should provide a modern online experience, including: 

  • Easy job search – The ability for job seekers to easily search and apply for relevant internships and job opportunities via their computer or mobile devices
  • Job emails – The ability for members to sign up to have jobs matched to their preferences and qualifications and sent directly to their inbox whenever those jobs are posted
  • Personalized job recommendations – The ability for you to automatically recommend job opportunities to your members based on their prior job searches on your job board 

TIP: YM Careers by Community Brands offers job board software built for associations. It’s designed for niche career centers versus general career centers. This makes it much easier for job seekers to connect with companies who are hiring in your industry and for employers to access highly qualified candidates (your members and potential members)

Career content/advice

To help your members advance their careers, your online career center should offer relevant career advice. This can take the form of a library of articles and other content about topics such as:

  • Résumé and cover letter writing  
  • Personal branding 
  • Networking  
  • Job interview techniques  
  • Job search and career growth ideas 

Career coaching

Your career center also should help your members connect with certified career coaches through a directory that members can filter by practice or industry to find the right match for their needs. These coaches can guide your members through things like career planning, résumé building, and negotiation. Coaches can also help your members to:

  • Work through career challenges 
  • Add direction to their career goals 
  • Prepare for job interview

TIP: A Career Planning Portal comes with every YM Careers job board. It provides professionals in your industry with a comprehensive set of career resources, including a Career Advice module that offers career content to help professionals prepare for every step in their career journey and a Career Coaching module that matches your members with experienced career coaches. 

Career insights

Your members need to be able to understand details about their chosen career paths within your industry or profession. That’s why your career center should give your members access to career data that helps them make more informed decisions about moving forward or changing direction with their careers.

This career data should include things like: 

  • Career descriptions  
  • Statistics of typical education levels of people in each role  
  • Occupational outlooks  
  • Activities performed by people in each role  
  • “Day in the life” videos  
  • Salary benchmarks  
  • Unemployment data  
  • Comparison of employment statistics using local, state, and nationwide averages 
  • Related occupation

TIP: With a Career Planning Portal from YM Careers, you can provide members with valuable career insights into every role in your industry or profession. 

A career pathing tool

What could make your association more relevant than giving your members a way to create a clear roadmap to reach their professional goals? Your online career center should offer an online tool to help your members visually map out the path to achieve their career aspirations.  

A career pathing tool can help your members:

  • Find next steps in their careers 
  • Self-assess their skills 
  • Create a career action plan

TIP: Using Career Planning Portal from YM Careers, you can empower your members to map out their career goals using an interactive, step-by-step career pathing tool 

A mentor board

Your online career center should provide a way for members to connect with mentors who can provide them with ongoing career guidance. This is often particularly helpful for members who are early in their careers and those who are making career changes. A mentor board helps to create strong professional relationships that support your members’ career journeys

TIP: MentorBoard functionality in Career Planning Portal from YMCareers helps you to connect members with mentors who can provide guidance, support, and a positive influence

Get started with an online career center for your association 

Offering a robust online career center is a powerful way to stay relevant with your association’s members throughout their career journeys. YM Careers can get you started.

One of the great things about YM Careers is that you pay no up-front costs: YM Careers doesn’t start making money until you do. And if you don’t have staff available to manage job board sales and marketing, YM Careers can help you showcase your job board to employers and job seekers.

YM Careers also integrates with YourMembership AMS by Community Brands, which is affordable, easy-to-use membership software for small to mid-sized associations. These solutions work together to help you create member experiences that drive member acquisition and engagement for years to come.   

Get an all-in-one solution for your association!

Learn more: Explore YM Careers. 



By Kyela Bishop, YourMembership Marketing Coordinator, Community Brands

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