hurdle of requiring physical presence. And associations can adapt to this brave new world by moving online.
“The days of driving to a Moose or Elk Lodge meeting might be over. After the convenience of attending online meetings over the last few years, I don’t think we’re going back to the Moose model,” said Ray Arouesty, the senior vice president of Hub International and the endorsed insurance provider to the Independent Pool and Spa Service Association (IPSSA), The Swimming Pool Association of Hawaii (SPAH), and the National Plasterers Council (NPC).
Currently, many associations offer webinars and other online resources for members to receive education and other benefits. And some associations are also considering a special kind of membership that doesn’t include physically attending an actual meeting.
For example, leadership within IPSSA has been discussing a special nationwide chapter affiliate program wherein pool and spa professionals from across the country can obtain many of the benefits of IPSSA membership, such as access to manufacturer- based training, certifications, and unsurpassed insurance coverage, without having to drive to a monthly meeting. Of course, sick route coverage would be excluded from membership benefits, but many of the other advantages of IPSSA membership could be retained.
Such a program could bring in membership from all across the country, rather than being limited to only those service professionals working in the Sunbelt states. And just as chapters break off when they begin to exceed a manageable size, online chapters could also split off to maintain workability.
Online association membership may just be the answer to increasing association membership for trade organizations.
In this special issue of Service Industry News, we’ll take a close look at the unique benefits offered by specific memberships available to pool and spa service professionals.