ALA Analytics - FAQ

What are the primary goals and objectives of this project?

  1. Centralize org-wide data on the ALA Analytics platform to build a comprehensive dashboard that covers revenue, membership, and reach

  2. Association-wide adoption of the ALA Analytics platform


We have a lot of data systems in place already, will those be connected to ALA Analytics?

They will! The initial implementation of ALA Analytics will focus on three core modules: Membership, Events, and Sales. These modules will be designed to pull from existing systems such as iMIS, CompuSystems, Informz, and Higher Logic, etc. to ensure we’re not duplicating work (or asking anyone else to duplicate work). As we’re working to submit existing data to set ourselves up for success, we just ask for your patience if we need to be pointed in the right direction to find your unit or program’s reports.


Systems like Great Plains, Prophix, Foundant, Web Course Works, Salesforce, the ALA Store, and others can be incrementally added after the initial implementation.


What does the timeline look like? What are the milestones?

Planning: November-December 2023

Implementation: January-May 2023

Survey: January 2023

Delivery: Membership, Events, and Sales modules

Onboarding: April 2023

Launch: May 2023

Monitoring: June 2023-ongoing

Delivery: Additional modules (as needed)


Who’s the primary team working on this project?

Executive sponsors Tracie Hall, ED

Mary Mackay, Interim Senior AED and AED, Publishing

Rebecca Headrick, CITO

Melissa Walling, ALA Offices & Member Relations


Project team Shakir Akbari, Deputy Director, IT (Data, Design & Research CFT)

Cory Stevenson, ALA Connect Community Manager (Data, Design & Research CFT)

Darcy Young, Special Project Manager (contract)


We are also working closely with the folks at A2, who have implemented this platform at many similar associations and organizations. They have been instrumental in working closely with us to provide playbooks filled with tried and true tactics to ensure success here at ALA!


What obstacles are you expecting to encounter?

While this platform has been thoroughly researched and vetted, it is new to many of us working on this project. We know this can be frustrating and that many of you do not have a ton of time to learn a new platform. We will do everything in our power to ensure that this is a smooth transition and are confident that this platform will save us all time in the long run after the initial onboarding and launch.


As we grow into our analytics capabilities, there will be an element of progressive elaboration as we get to know our data better and find new ways to analyze it. 


How will this project affect me and my work?

We are working on compiling as much data as we can without having to call on you, but we will be needing your input in January via a brief survey. We will also be asking for your cooperation in going through an onboarding program in April to ensure those who will be using the platform are up-to-speed with the new technology and comfortable using it in their work.


What kinds of things are looking to collect in the January survey? How should I be preparing?

The January survey will ask you to submit any data sets or documentation you currently use for data collection (how you measure success, where your efforts are going, etc.). We recommend starting to think about getting those items together now.


I don’t enjoy learning new technologies/I don’t have time to learn new technology.

We totally get that. This platform is new to us, too! We will be providing training resources such as short videos, readings, tips, and tricks throughout the onboarding stage. ALA Analytics is designed to make our work more effortless in the long run, even if adopting the new platform is tricky at first.


Will we get regular updates going forward?

Yes! Our goal is to be transparent about our progress by providing monthly updates throughout this project. Your understanding of and interest in ALA Analytics will be critical to its success, so it’s important to us to keep you up to date.


This is an area I’m passionate about, will there be opportunities to get involved?

You bet! In January 2023, we’ll be asking for “champions” to work with us on this project and help make sure we get to our target adoption rates. We will be soliciting volunteers from all teams, disciplines, comfort levels with new technologies, etc.