Have you looked at your documentation recently?

Many years ago I wrote an article about how important documentation is to the long-term success of your AMS. (You can read that article here.)

What I wrote in that article is still pertinent today. Documentation of processes is absolutely vital to long-term success. Staff needs to clearly define and document how data will be processed throughout the organization. Without documentation, agreed upon processes quickly devolve to whatever each staff person remembers of a given process. Eventually processes that are managed by more than one staff person will diverge, and the result will be bad data.

So what does your documentation look like? Have you reviewed it lately? Is it up-to-date? Many of the AMS vendors are now providing online tools built directly into the software to allow you to document your own processes. If your vendor does this, make sure you’re taking advantage of it.

Like the article says, documentation is king. If you want to be successful long-term, you need to have it.

About Wes Trochlil

For over 30 years, 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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