Member Value: Making Member Connections

By: Janelle Bates, Director, Membership Relations and Events, Ontario Waterpower Association

Earlier this year the OWA launched its new member software, the Member Hub. The Hub provides for tremendous marketing and networking opportunities and allows members to directly control their membership information.

There are three main features that make up the Member Hub: an online Member Directory; the Member’s Forum; and My Info – the membership information portal. Each of these components features their own unique capabilities.

The Member Directory replaces the previous print directory and allows members to update their company information in real time, thereby ensuring that the OWA and its members have the most current information. Using the My Directory Listing portal, members can change their company’s contact information, add or change their company’s description, use keywords to allow other members to find their specific areas of expertise and post multimedia such as images and video to market their services. Additionally, the basic company information automatically syncs with the public facing member directory. To learn more about using the Member Directory, click here.

The Member’s Forum, another key component of the Hub, is evolving. The Forum has been designed to foster the exchange of ideas, experiences and advice, and is intended to facilitate relationships and networking between members. The Forum hosts employment listings and the most recent business opportunities for the waterpower industry. On a daily basis, the OWA staff are researching and filtering through information found on online procurement sites, then posting this information to the Forum. Additionally, a “Connection Circuit” has been created specifically for members to be able to post comments, questions and concerns to be answered by, and to inform, other members. All members should be “watching” the Business Opportunities and Connection Circuit topics, and we encourage your participation.  Click here to view a training video on how to use the Forum.

Finally, the My Info feature in the Hub provides members with control over their membership details, such as adding additional staff members to the member account, paying membership fees directly through the Hub and even referring other members. Members are reminded that, although each member company has one primary contact and voting member (one member, one vote), all staff members from your organization can be added to your company profile to receive our weekly updates, attend networking events, and participate on Committees.

The Member Hub provides tremendous marketing and networking opportunities and we are very excited to provide this new tool to our members. It is our hope that all members will use this software to its full potential. Should you have any questions regarding this software please do not hesitate to contact me directly at 866-743-1500 ext. 23 or jbates@owa.ca.

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