Attending Protech's First Customer Conference

Protech held their first annual users group conference last week in DC. I thought it was a pretty good effort, but I hate attending conferences at the Reagan Building. That building was designed to confuse me.

At any rate, once I was able to find the conference and the meeting rooms, I was pleased with what I saw and heard. Protech did a nice job of developing a cross-section of break-out sessions covering both technical and non-technical topics. They also announced that they will be working on developing a CRM for Members users group, which is great news. I’m constantly harping on my clients (and at the AMS vendors) to get active in their users group, and if there isn’t a users group, start one!

CRM4M is a very promising product, but it will be much better served if the customers can get organized and communicate to Protech what their needs are.

One cool thing I learned: The link from CRM4M to Excel can be dynamic. That is, you can create a query, export it to Excel, and make the link dynamic to the website so that every time the Excel sheet is opened, it checks the database to see if data has been updated. Very cool!

A less cool note was that the Word merge capabilities in CRM4M only work through Outlook. That is, you have to be using Outlook as your database view (which is very cool in its own right) to use the Word merge capabilities. This is less cool because many users work from the web browser rather than from Outlook.

UPDATE: Full disclosure: EDM is an independent third-party consulting firm. This means we have no financial relationship with any of the vendors mentioned in this blog. We provide unbiased opinions on what we see.

About Wes Trochlil

For a quarter century, Wes has worked in and with dozens of associations and membership organizations throughout the US, ranging in size from zero staff (all-volunteer) to over 700. In that time Wes has provided a range of consulting services, from general consulting on data management issues to full-scale, association-wide selection and implementation of association management systems.

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