The Australian Institute of Management (AIM), Queensland and Northern Territory Division, using a Brisbane company's software programs, has launched the pilot stage of a new and innovative member service to be delivered over the internet - MemberNet.
AIM Queensland and Northern Territory Manager of Membership and Information Services, Ms Lana de Kort, said MemberNet, using Concord Australia's MASTERfile and AIMS software suite, will provide AIM's 5000 personal members with an exclusive portal to the combined business and management knowledge of the institute.
"One of AIM's goals is to provide knowledge to create leading-edge research, learning and development opportunities for members," she said. "In line with this goal, MemberNet has harnessed all of our organisation's knowledge and disseminated it to members in the most efficient way - through the net.
"MemberNet is the convergence of three elements: Multi-media, Knowledge Management and Customer Relationship Management. What we end up with is a personalised entry point into all the opportunities offered by an AIM membership."
Concord Australia managing director, Mr Colin Bell, said Concord's systems provide MemberNet's search interface, manage the customer profiles and electronic documents, and enable the interactivity where members can add their own documents.
"Using MemberNet as the web-based medium, and Concord's AIMS and MASTERfile software suite as the industrial strength, the customer relationship aspects of MemberNet are interwoven throughout the service," he said.
Ms de Kort said MemberNet will facilitate improved communication between AIM and its members, especially those who travel regularly or live in remote, rural areas.
"Our personal members expect us to know them, they expect us to respond, they expect us to anticipate their needs and - in many cases - they want to contribute," she said. "These expectations form the basis of our customer relationship with our members.
"MemberNet keeps the member - our customer - front of mind, serving up information as it starts to know more about them, and offering opportunities to search for all forms of explicit knowledge that will be gradually downloaded into the MemberNet database that sits behind the interface.
"Eventually, we'll be in the position where we will also be able to facilitate, capture and deliver tacit knowledge."
Information currently stored in MemberNet includes web sites, documents, current affairs material, and all the information stored in the library catalogue which includes over 8,000 books, audio tapes and videos.
Ms de Kort said MemberNet's pilot launch is just the beginning, offering minimal gift-wrapping to ensure maximum speed and functionality.
"During this initial four-month stage, our members and regional committees will test the site and provide us with valuable feedback," she said. "We've provided the multi-media canvas, but ultimately it's the feedback from everyone in the organisation that will determine how this picture will finally come out."
AIM is Australia's largest professional body for managers comprising 29,000 personal members and 6,000 key corporate members nationally. AIM and software developer Concord Australia established a partnership 12 months ago to establish a Best Practice Knowledge Management site.