People, process and technology: leaving the legacy behind

Escape from the legacy association software cycle!

Non-profit organisations and NGOs are under served by legacy vendors and they should have the right to buy effective software that runs both in non-profits and for profits, says Paul Lundy, President and Co-Founder of Fonteva, which provides an association management solution built on the Salesforce platform.

Speaking at the recent TechSmart 2019 event, Paul told delegates that they were in the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution but probably using technology which is lagging behind: “If your technology doesn’t allow you to grow you are probably with a legacy provider.

“Most people just want all their data in a single place so that they can access it to make good business decisions. Legacy systems have narrow functionality and are usually costly to upgrade. What tends to happen is that when you try to connect everything up you get data silos.

An organisation’s needs and requirements will inevitably change but the actual members’ needs remain largely the same – training and certification, professional development, networking, job search and industry news.

“What has changed is their expectation and that has been shaped by what’s happening in the rest of their lives – they literally want the equivalent of the Amazon Prime buying experience.

“There is challenge in meeting these expectations and rapid technological advances are making it difficult to keep up with these, especially if your own technology is limited and not enabling.”

At Fonteva, they believe in the development of technology on a global scale: “Our technology allows you to transact in any country in any language,” says Paul.

However, he warned, It is not only about the technology, it’s about the people and processes too; if the team does not buy into your strategy and future plans then technology will not work for you. “Your processes may be out of date and it may be hard to justify them, but it can be even harder to change them.

“The cards are stacked against you unless you are smart and engage across the whole organisation not just the technology department, and driven by leadership but it is vital that you choose the correct and enabling technology to begin with.”

Keys to successful digital transformation

  • Align and involve leaders
  • Empower your people
  • Focus your initiatives on top priorities
  • Create ambassadors within the organisation
  • Stay flexible and agile
  • Keep people engaged

Shifting demographics, data silos, increasingly high member expectations, rapid technology advancement – no shortage of challenges here to engage with your members and staff

Rising to the challenge of Industry 4.0

Preparing for tomorrow, today

The pace, scale and impact of Industry 4 is like nothing we have ever seen before – the first human tissue has been 3D printed in Tel-Aviv, quantum computing is a reality, routine tasks are already being performed by algorithms – and the technology associated with Industry 4 will transform how we live.

In this era of turmoil and unprecedented change, organisations must equip themselves with digital capability which maximises their ability to rapidly adapt and respond to external factors. And the pace of change means non-profit organisations must prepare for this now, Paul Johnson, Director, CTI digital told delegates at TechSmart 2019.

“The question is are you able to evolve quickly enough to keep up with this rapid pace of change?”

Additionally, says Paul, expectation inflation is something that everyone can resonate with these days and it’s so much harder for smaller brands to replicate the Uber, Deliveroo or Amazon experience, when they so often are operating with ageing and siloed technologies.

“Non-profit organisations and and NGOs must equip themselves with the technology that will allow them to adapt to change – all too often we are seeing them operate with a patchwork of systems that are costly and out of date. As digital consultants we frequently see experience, content and data existing in multiple silos, leading to disjointed customer experiences.”

You have to get the basics right, says Paul, no more clumsy integrations, no more fragmented user experiences but most of all, you have to meet your users’ needs and expectations – it’s time to join the dots. “We are talking about global inter-connected cloud systems equipped with APIs that overcome data challenges like analytics blind spots and fragmented user experiences.

“You will need a platform that delivers quality, speed and price, using data during the fact (not after) to make better decisions, so that your people can start focusing time on working to exceed user expectations. And you can use these platforms to create new real world partnerships with other institutions and businesses.”

“It’s time to rethink how you consider technology, harness the potential of readily available tools, and focus on making processes quicker to complete and menial tasks easier to manage. Then you can free up more time for complex tasks and make better thought out decisions.”

Key take-aways

  • Got to remain relevant and of value
  • Focus on making routine tasks easier
  • Use the tools that are available
  • Imagine things that are remarkable

“There has never been a time of greater promise, or one of greater potential peril.” Professor Klaus Schwab, founder of the World Economic Forum