A recent Community Brands study shows that job opportunities are one of the most important benefits to members, yet associations have work to do in this area.

According to the Community Brands Member Engagement and Loyalty Study, job opportunities rank in the top 10 of most important benefits to members of professional associations.

The study also shows that job opportunities are fundamental for recruiting and retaining members (especially those in the first five years of their careers) and continuing to support them throughout their career journey.

The study data reinforces a trend seen across multiple Community Brands studies: Job opportunities are important for acquisition as well as retention. But Pros do not see job opportunities as important as members do, nor do they say they offer a great member experience in this area.

Only 12 percent of Pros say their organization is doing very well delivering job opportunities. Members say their organization is doing a better job than association professionals say they are, but still only 27 percent of members say they’re doing very well.

So, what can your organization do to bridge the gaps?

The disconnects suggest that associations should focus more time and attention on how they help their members get the right job and advance their careers. One place to start is with your online career center. With the right technology and some proven techniques, your online career center can be a great source of member engagement (and even added revenue) for your organization.

Using job board software with job alerts, personalized searches and recommendations, and the ability for members to import their resumes from LinkedIn and log in through social accounts such as Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn, will go a long way toward boosting engagement and member satisfaction. In turn, your organization will be more competitive, and members will spend more time interacting on your association site – which translates into increased member participation, networking, and renewals.

To drive even more goodness for your association, it’s important to optimize your online job board for visibility and access to non-members – in effect, using the job board to drive membership and increase revenue. One highly effective way to achieve this is by integrating your job board with your association management software (AMS).

For example, YM Careers is part of Community Brands’ integrated software suite for associations. Unlike other job boards, YM Careers ensures associations have visibility and recruitment access to non-members who are using the board – tracking their activity and writing it back to their record within the AMS, all to drive membership and increase revenue.

The data is clear: it’s time to deliver the job opportunities your members want.

Find out more about what members want from their professional associations and what makes them stick around: Download the Member Engagement and Loyalty Study