Wild Apricot Software News February 2014

Lori Halley 27 February 2014 3 comments

Version 5 Release

As you know, the entire Wild Apricot development team is working hard finalizing and testing Version 5, which we’ll be launching in the near future.  This version will include a complete redesign of our web content management system (CMS) – aka website builder – as well as other changes. For details on what will be included in the Version 5 release you can read the Version 5 Preview page in our online help. In March, we’ll be sending all of our clients emails with specifics around the launch process, timelines and what you can expect.



Focus on Wild Apricot partners

Wild Apricot was designed to offer an easy-to-use website builder and membership management system for small associations, clubs and non-profits. The enhanced CMS that we’ll be launching with Version 5 offers a redesigned page setup process to make site design both simpler and more flexible.

But while we offer up a self-serve and easy-to-use website platform as well as extensive assistance through our top-notch support team, Wild Apricot users can also access assistance through our directory of third-party services partners. These are external firms that offer, consulting, setup, and customization services such as:

  • website design services (graphic design, CSS etc.)
  • IT consulting and administration services
  • member database import
  • full Wild Apricot system setup
  • content transfer from existing websites
  • integrating and extending Wild Apricot with additional services
  • If your organization wants to take advantage of any of our third-party service partners, you can check our Services Partner Directory for organizations in your area.

Spotlight on one Wild Apricot services partner

One of our partners, Webbright Services recently contacted us to tell us about a new initiative called the Bright Association Press. Each month Webbright  interviews one or two association executives (and Wild Apricot/Webbright customers) to talk about their association successes and challenges. One of the interviews that Webbright’s Lamees Abourahma brought to our attention is called "Association Success Secrets from Greg Laney” (President of Atlanta Area Compensation Association).

Interview issues mirror insights we’re documenting through our Small Membership Survey

In looking at Lamees’ interview with Greg, I noticed that some of the questions asked and issues discussed mirror the topics we’ve included on our Small Membership Survey.

Note:  We’ve just launched the 2nd edition of our Small Membership Survey this month.  If you haven’t participated yet, please check out this blog post or head straight to the live online survey link here: 2014 Small Membership Survey.

Excerpts from Association Press interview

Here are a couple of clips from the Association Press interview between Lamees Abourahma (Webbright) and Greg Laney (Atlanta Area Compensation Association):

Lamees: How important are in-person events for you, and what size events do you offer?

Greg: The in-person events are the life-blood of our association. Standard events run 35-40 people, while the most popular standard special events run around 50 people. The Annual Forum (our conference) usually sees enrollment numbers around 100.

Funding:

Lamees: What are the main funding sources for your organization?

Greg: We have three primary funding sources: member dues, sponsorships and earnings from our training partnership with World@Work. The three sources mentioned bring are actually listed smallest to largest in terms of dollars they bring in to the association.

Lamees: Do you have sponsorship program? What’s your experience in using sponsorship as a revenue generation channel?

Greg: The sponsorship is something that works great for our members and helps us control dues. We find that companies like sponsoring our events when we bring in topics that our members want to hear.

Association Management:

Lamees: One of the most common challenges professional associations face is running an organization based on volunteers mainly. As a volunteer-only organization, how do you effectively manage your association?

Greg: We do a few things. First we offer members opportunities to volunteer and learn the ins-and-outs of the organization. Second, we use the collective knowledge of our experienced membership to properly vet board members. Third, we ensure new board members they are afforded a transition period, where they meet with the outgoing board member to discuss next year’s plans. Oftentimes, the out-going board member has worked to address many of the early year needs. Finally, board members are allowed to serve four consecutive years. This requires members to rotate off the board. This also ensures that as new members come onto the board, that there are several other experienced board members to help.

Check out the entire article

If you’d like to read the entire Association Press interview or check out other similar blog posts, you can visit Webbright’s Blog. Lamees also tells us that they've started a weekly news roundup called the Association Debrief, which includes our Wild Apricot Blog as one of its key sources.

So to recap, stay tuned to the Wild Apricot Blog for updates on the Version 5 release. In addition, all clients can expect to receive update emails with specific timelines and details on the Version 5 launch in the near future.

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Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot] Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Posted by Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Published Thursday, 27 February 2014 at 8:30 AM

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Comments

  • Amy K said:

    Thursday, 27 February 2014 at 3:06 PM
    In March we will get a timeline for the new release? I am not holding my breath!
  • Keith R said:

    Thursday, 27 February 2014 at 4:20 PM
    It is becoming increasing difficult to quell a " troop " uprising over the constantly moving upgrade date. Are you going to meet your latest deadline of a Q1 release?
  • Chief Apricot said:

    Thursday, 27 February 2014 at 5:00 PM
    Our timeline for the release is ~end of April-mid May. We will be doing it very differently this time - i.e. not forcing everyone to upgrade on the same day but will do it in batches. This will be explained in our March post.
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