In 2019/20, VUCAP conducted an internal research project on 17 membership organisations in Western Australia. The aim was to understand what makes some highly successful and what factors contribute to other membership organisations struggling to remain sustainable.
The single most important factor that the research identified was the organisation's ability to provide commercial services to its members.
Organisations that solely relied on membership fees, were at the highest risk of of not being able to sustain their operations into the next five years or where at the highest risk of having low membership benefit.
Figure 1: A snap shot of one of the organisations analysed in the VUCAP study, shows the importance of revenue generated from goods and services as well as demonstrating the impact on expenses from grants and donations.
The research identified six key areas that Western Australian business and not for profit organisations needed assistance with the most. We called these the market needs.
Meeting marketing needs improves the membership organisation's value to members, and financial health and sustainability.
VUCAP 2020: Factors affecting membership organisations sustainability in Western Australia.
Higher membership growth rates when accounting for size
Membership organisations that met these six market needs had larger membership growth rates per 100 members, calculated by changes in membership fees.
They also experienced higher revenues and increased end of year profits.
Increased and more reliable revenue from their membership base
Increased Profitability when based on both margin and return ratios
The VUCAP response to the findings
It was evident that many organisations didn't have the budget or the technical skills readily available to meet the six market requirements.
So we developed a scalable add on service that allows membership organisations to provide advisory or information services in each of the six market needs.
Information to support members with difficult legal matters, including contract and disputes.
Information to support members with understanding and applying safety and principles that ensure compliance with legislation.
Supporting members navigating FairWork and their relationships with employees.
With over $100B in funding available to businesses members can be supported to identify new funding sources.
Responding to members' needs to develop enterprise risk management systems.
Understanding market trends to support business strategic decisions using IBIS World reports market intelligence tools to provide market insights to members.
To find out more about how these services could be embedded into your organisation and customised to suite your needs, email, phone or log a time that suites you and we'll call you to discuss options that may suite your organisation.
Key contact person
Andre specialises in Governance and Risk Management specifically for small to medium sized organisations.
Contact Andre to discuss how the VUCAP membership organisations service can be designed to fit your organisation, and support you to scale up your services to your members.
Andre De Barr