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Don’t waste time struggling with your membership database

Does your administration process make you work harder than you need to? Are you guilty of trying to be all things to all people? Or perhaps you realise you are not working as efficiently as you could be, but don’t know what to do about it?

The time-wasting mistakes highlighted in this blog are more common than you think. You may already be guilty of some of them. So stop doing what doesn’t work and learn how to be more efficient, more productive and more effective with the help of some quick fixes which we will show you below. Alternatively, download our free ultimate Membership Management ebook.

The Impact Of Time Wasting

Many small member organisations are managed by just 2-3 people. Often these people have to wear ‘many hats’ and often it is the organisation administrator who has the most to take on. Whilst limited budgets and scarce resources are just one set of challenges faced by these organisations, it is usually the administrative systems or processes in place which can make a simple task very complicated. Let’s face it, when things don’t work as efficiently as they should, the end result is frustration, not to mention wasted time and potentially working at cross purposes with others.

If you could find easier and faster ways of working, you would surely take them, right? Your first step, however, is to analyse the mistakes you are making, identify where improvements could be made and implement new procedures with helpful tools.

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Time Wasting Mistakes:

How many of these mistakes sound familiar?

  • Failing to delegate tasks – could someone else be writing up minutes, setting out meeting agendas, and chasing people up on outstanding items?
  • Using inefficient systems/tools – have you been left with the legacy of previous administrators? Do your tools consist of expansive spreadsheets and out-of-the-box software which no longer works for your needs? Is your contact database at risk of duplicate entries?
  • Being over committed – remember those ‘hats’? Are you guilty of taking on tasks which do not relate directly to your admin role?
  • Failing to plan ahead – are you guilty of leaving things to the last minute? Do you find yourself compromised by having to get tasks done asap?
  • Failing to automate some tasks – could tools like admin and payments software help you automate tasks like sending out group communications or setting up automatic renewals?
  • Failing to periodically review tools/systems/procedures/roles – is everything still working as effectively as it should? Have individual roles within the organisation become blurred meaning you are working less efficiently? How about those legacy systems – are they still relevant to your organisation and it’s members or customers?
  • Over complicating the role – are you guilty of making simple admin tasks, such as creating reports or renewals, too complicated through the systems/processes you have in place? Could tools like LoveAdmin help you streamline some of these tasks?
  • Transition terror – are you or your committee afraid to embrace change? Do you or they prefer to do things a certain way simply because that’s the way it has always been done? For example, mailing out paper minutes and communications rather than using email, or using time-consuming paper-based filing systems instead of embracing online cloud storage systems.

5 Ways To Help Reduce Time Wasting Mistakes:

1. Automate systems and processes

Reduce time and effort by embracing technology and the wealth of applications available for improving administration (like LoveAdmin!). This could free up time to concentrate on other areas of your role.

2. Use job aids and online resources

Keep track of important notes, key contacts, new procedures and important dates with online applications like Evernote. Applications like this can help store important information and make it easily accessible from any locale.

3. Share the workload

Maybe you are planning a major fundraiser or focusing hard on marketing and PR for your organisation? Get everyone involved and share the workload around. Use tools like Asana to help you assign tasks, create schedules and communicate with other team members.

4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

If you can’t get something done on time or have just too much on your plate, then don’t be afraid to ask for someone else to take some of the work off you. Don’t be afraid to turn tasks down either. Your colleagues are more likely to respect you for managing your workload effectively rather than question your capabilities.

5. Review and refine

Improvements can always be made so it pays to regularly review your working practices, your procedures, and the tools and applications you use.

Don’t wait until your role as administrator becomes a burden and mistakes begin to have a major impact. This should be a role you enjoy working, for an organisation you are committed to. By embracing new technology, membership database software and applications you can automate administration and streamline your workload, making your day-to-day role far easier. Furthermore, you will improve efficiency throughout the organisation and make things better for your members or customers.

To find which admin tasks you can be doing quicker and easier online, visit our free resources page.

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