Set benchmarks to measure progress

It’s impossible to measure progress if you don’t know your starting point.

This sounds axiomatic, but too often it is overlooked by associations looking to improve their data management.

Measuring progress requires setting initial benchmarks. The new year is a perfect time to establish your data management benchmarks. Some ideas:

  • How many data integrity reports do you have and how often do you run them?
  • What’s your current bounce rate for email and snail-mail?
  • How quickly can you produce common reports like membership counts, event registration, and a/r aging? And are they accurate?
  • How much (or little) does staff trust the data?
  • On what percentage of members do you have key data points?


Set these benchmarks now, and measure them again in six months and a year to measure progress/change.

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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