Staff Shortages and Associations: How the Right LMS Can Help You Out

A meeting table surrounded by empty chairs, indicating staff shortages for this association.

Are you looking for ways to increase efficiency in your association, while also dealing with staff shortages?

Are you feeling overwhelmed and unsure of where to start?

Don’t worry–there’s a software solution to help you out, and it’s called a Learning Management System (LMS)!

The right LMS can help bridge the staff shortage gap and get your association back on track. It’s a digital tool that can help you streamline and automate processes related to continuing education, helping your association to remain productive even with fewer people.

In this post, we’ll cover how an LMS can help increase efficiencies in your association, how you can leverage it for specific needs, and how to prepare your association for the future. Let’s get started!

1. Examine Your Current Workflow

Before you start looking for an LMS, it’s important to examine your workflow and identify what needs improvement. This will aid you in determining what type of LMS you should be looking for, as well as how it can help streamline your processes.

Consider which tasks are the most time-consuming and which processes have the potential for automation.

For example: Are you currently processing member registrations manually? What about certificates of completion? These are tasks that can be automated through an LMS.

There are a number of things an LMS can help your organization streamline. Here are just a few examples:

  • Registering new members for continuing education courses
  • Automating payment processing
  • Scheduling and managing training sessions
  • Sending general communication and notifications
  • Generating course analytics
  • Tracking course progress for members
  • Tracking and managing certifications
  • Integrating with other databases and systems
  • Testing and assessment
  • Tracking and managing membership records
  • Automating course creation and management

Once you have a list of problems you need to be solved, begin crafting a requirements document–a list of everything you need for the perfect LMS.

There are lots of choices when it comes to procuring an LMS, of course; do you want one that’s custom-built or Software as a Service (SaaS)?

By identifying your needs (and wants!), you can start looking for the LMS that will fulfill them all!

2. Leverage Your LMS to Increase Productivity

Utilizing an LMS is the key to maximizing your time and resources efficiently.

By reducing the amount of time spent on mundane tasks, your staff will be able to commit more energy towards helping you reach greater heights and giving extra value to members.

Let’s take a look at how an LMS can increase productivity for your organization.

Pursue New Opportunities

By automating administrative tasks, staff can pursue new opportunities and ideas, such as expanding into new markets or launching new initiatives. This can help associations stay ahead of the curve; the ability to sustainably maintain growth while retaining members is key!

Administrative staff are the cogs in the wheel that keeps an association running efficiently day-to-day. The right LMS can eliminate many of the tedious, time-consuming tasks that administrators are subject to, freeing up more time to pursue creative activities that add value to members’ experience. These activities can include:

  • Organizing webinars,
  • Creating interactive programs and resources,
  • Providing personalized career development services,
  • Building a mentorship program,
  • Organizing meet-ups to keep members engaged,
  • Or even offering virtual office hours to help members with their questions and concerns!

Furthermore, association staff can build relationships with external partners and pursue new revenue streams–giving their association a nice boost. All of these initiatives help foster relationships, support collaboration, and ensure that members have access to the resources they need to succeed in their industry.

Remember: many members come to associations to upskill, so by streamlining your course management processes, you can boost your quality and output in one fell swoop!

Develop Meaningful Relationships with Members

Without the burden of manual administrative tasks, staff can spend more time interacting with members and developing relationships, which can help increase member engagement and retention.

An engaged member base is key to the success of an association, so it’s important to invest time in strengthening and deepening relationships with your audience.

Develop and Implement New Programs

With more time on their hands, staff can focus on creating new programs for members. By providing targeted digital learning materials to your members, you can create a more engaging educational environment. You also add value to your association’s membership by providing members with access to new skills and resources.

Fostering a better learning environment can help create a stronger sense of community, as well as create more opportunities for members to become more involved with your organization.

Providing online continuing education can also help foster relationships with members who may not have the same access to physical spaces or educational events, allowing them to become more involved and feel included. Everyone wins!

Focus on Data-Driven Decisions

With an LMS in place, staff can track and analyze data to make more informed decisions. This can help associations make decisions that are based on facts and figures, rather than simply guesswork. This can also aid in streamlining the operations of an association, allowing you to maximize the impact your time and resources can have on projects. Good analytics can guide you toward making decisions that are right for your association (and its members).

For example, you can use real-time analytics to track the performance of members and courses, then use those insights to make any necessary adjustments. Additionally, you can use the data gathered from quizzes and tests to assess if members are truly grasping the material; if they do, great! If an unusual number of members are having trouble, that’s your cue to rework the material.

Overall, by using the data analytics a good LMS provides, association leaders can better identify areas of improvement and prioritize tasks that will result in a stronger, more sustainable organization.

Associations that use these techniques are more Agile and responsive to the changing needs of their members and external partners, allowing them to pivot and adapt to the changing market as necessary. This ensures that everyone gets the best value from their investment in your association.

3. Prepare Your Association for the Future with an LMS

With the right LMS, you can prepare your association for the future. An LMS helps you stay organized, yes, but did you know that it can also help your organization keep up with the latest trends?

Quality learning management systems can offer emergent technologies, such as mobile-friendly learning platforms and gamification.

Have you ever been browsing the internet on your phone, only to stumble on a page that’s too wide for the screen and too small to read? That’s an issue in mobile-responsiveness, and you don’t want your association’s sites falling into this trap.

A good LMS will automatically optimize its layout for screens of all kinds–desktop, tablet, phone, you name it!

You may think this feature falls under the “nice to have” column, but consider–mobile use is only increasing, and members are more likely than ever to take courses on-the-go. Mobile-responsive platforms are the way of the future, so don’t let your association miss out!

Gamification is also becoming more popular. Everyone likes games, so make using your platform feel more like “play” and less like “work”. Virtual badges (also called eBadges) are one way to do this; by awarding members with these digital achievement stickers, you let them know they’re doing well!

Another version of this comes in the form of “engagement scores”–a statistic that can tell association members how well they’re taking advantage of your platform. Consider offering competitions and awards for high scores!

By including these features, you’ll be better able to help your association stand out from the rest and ensure that you’re providing the best possible experience for your members.

With the right LMS, everybody wins!

You may also like: Launching Your New LMS: 6 Steps for a Successful Rollout


Through the power of the right LMS, you can help your association increase efficiency–even with fewer people!

Taking the time to examine your current workflow and selecting the right LMS for the job will help you increase efficiency, save time, and set your association up for success.

Start searching for the perfect LMS today!