Strategic Plan

CORE PURPOSE

Connecting Alumni – Supporting UAF

CORE VALUES

  • Independent
  • Loyal
  • Engaged
  • Collaborative
  • Committed
  • Ethical
  • Inspired

The strategic plan for UAF Alumni Association was adopted and passed by the board on January 16, 2016.


LONG-TERM GOAL (2025)

Within 10 years, 25 percent of UAF alumni are active members of the UAF Alumni Association.

Vivid description of long-term goal:

Achieving this long-term goal is a function of a decade of success in building a sustainable, relevant, aligned and respected association that alumni want to join, including:

  1. Incorporating programs and expanding benefits for association members;
  2. Increasing outreach and marketing efforts;
  3. Growing staff capacity to support the core purpose;
  4. Improving the financial infrastructure and growing sustainable revenue; and
  5. Being an active, committed and respected partner with UAF and other key stakeholders.

MID-TERM GOAL (2020)

The UAF Alumni Association has made progress in developing sustainable revenue stream that is large enough and diverse enough to fund a thriving organization and generate operating reserves.


SUSTAINABILITY PRIORITIES (2016 – 2018)

1. Focus on increasing UAFAA membership by 10 percent annually

  • Finalize recommendations for a new membership and rate structure
  • Develop a comprehensive membership renewal/outreach & communications plan
  • Seek new membership benefits
  • Continue to build and improve membership database with good data
  • Go after “low-hanging fruit” – lapsed members
  • Special gift for Lifetime members

2. Build strong governance and management

  • Prepare for significant board transition in May 2016
  • Create board and officer job descriptions (Fall 2016) that clarify expectations, responsibilities, code of conduct and active committee participation
  • Add staff capacity by 2018 - administrative assistant – to better handle administrative operations
  • Provide an online voting option for members during 2016 board of director elections.
  • Update bylaws to reflect the current times/best practices
  • Update policies and procedures manual to reflect bylaws changes, MOA, best practices in membership management, volunteer management, list sharing, etc.

3. Improve fiscal management, capacity and financial resilience

  • Update investment policy to better reflect the current realities of the investing environment, and to best meet the needs of the association
  • Begin the process of developing a UAFAA business plan for sustainability
  • Build the Benefactor Fund through coordinated annual appeal and stewardship plan
  • Build annual budgets that are realistic of actual spending and needs

4. Pursue active and engaged partnerships that move UAFAA forward

  • Actively pursue activities leading to meaningful participation in the 2016 Alaska Federation of Native annual meeting in Fairbanks
  • Seek out natural partners (Young Professionals Council in Fairbanks, UAA and UAS alumni in some cases, New Student Orientation, etc.) for engagement and strategic event opportunities
  • Increase the number of regional and affinity chapters by at least four by May 2016.
  • Increase by four additional chapters by 2018.
  • Alumni Awards—earlier timeline and utilize past recipients in nominations and selection process

ANNUAL OPERATING PLAN WITH SUSTAINABILITY PRIORITIES (2016)

Sustainability priority one: Focus on growing UAFAA membership by 10 percent annually

Objective 1.1: Finalize recommendations for a new membership and rate structure

Action steps

  • Explore “friends” category and simplify by eliminating club category entirely
  • Increase annual dues $10 (so $45/annual single and adjust the rest accordingly)
  • Decrease time to pay off a Lifetime installment from 5 years to 2 years; grandfather in those on current five-year plans.
  • Board vote required for all three of these; no bylaws changes necessary.

Objective 1.2: Develop a comprehensive membership/outreach & communications plan

Action steps

  • Implement a predictable and professional billing cycle for renewals (first notice, second notice, etc.)
  • Improve online website for membership (alumni “store”)
  • Eliminate type-written membership cards and move to plastic, with renewals being a sticker only
  • Showcase new membership packet, swag, benefits etc. as they are developed
  • Membership survey … what’s important to members?
  • New tri-fold brochure for improved marketing at events

Objective 1.3: Seek new membership benefits

Action steps

  • Pursue HotelStorm, AT&T and other pending member benefits
  • Consider new, local partners—Chena Hot Springs? Northern Alaska Tour Company?
  • Review current lineup of benefits; confirm existing ones and explore expansion of others, ie, hockey ticket discount for UAFAA members

Objective 1.4: Continue to build and improve membership database with good data

Action steps

  • Return all new addresses, phone numbers, etc., to UA Foundation for updating in Raiser’s Edge database
  • Load as “actions” in RE every renewal notice sent, event attendance, congratulations letter sent from alumni office, etc.

Objective 1.5: Go after “low-hanging fruit” – lapsed members

Action steps

  • Develop systematic plan for “we’ve missed you” notes to 3- and 5-year lapsed members.
  • Ask long-time lapsed members why they dropped
  • Tell everyone the story of the new and updated UAFAA via Alumnus, website, direct mail outreach
  • Lifetime payment plan, lapsed members

Objective 1.6: Special gift for Lifetime members

Action steps

  • Develop tactics to communicate with Lifetimers and let them know how much UAFAA values their membership
  • Consider a thank you gift line-item in UAFAA budget (snow globe, scarf, etc.) that will become a gift for all new Lifetimers.
  • Promote Lifetimers via social media. Make sure list on website is up-to-date.

Sustainability priority two: Build strong governance and management

Objective 2.1: Prepare for significant board transition in May 2016

Action steps

  • Commit to another round of board development with Foraker summer 2016
  • Consider Foraker for new member orientation

Objective 2.2: Create board and officer job descriptions (Fall 2016) that clarify expectations, responsibilities, code of conduct and active committee participation

Action steps

  • Board Development Committee to review and make recommendations to full board
  • Publicize job descriptions on website
  • Consider a UAFAA “open house” for prospective board members in 2017

Objective 2.3: Add staff capacity by 2018 - administrative assistant – to better handle administrative operations

Action steps

  • This objective is dependent on funding

Objective 2.4: Provide an online voting option for members during 2016 board of director elections.

Action steps

  • Research vendors and cost/benefits
  • Have nominations/elections committee approve in time for action at January board meeting

Objective 2.5: Update bylaws to reflect the current times/best practices

Action steps

  • Ad-hoc bylaws committee finish its work in time for recommendations to go before full board by January 16 meeting
  • Publish full bylaws in January issue of The Alumnus, website and digital Alumnus to fulfill member notice requirements
  • Put on agenda for full board vote at May meeting under old business. Outgoing board will need to vote on the changes and explain them to incoming members.

Objective 2.6: Update policies and procedures manual to reflect bylaws changes, MOA, best practices in membership management, volunteer management, list sharing, etc.

Action steps

  • Summer 2016 project to reflect the bylaws changes, MOA and best practices of the office

Sustainability priority three: Improve fiscal capacity and financial resilience

Objective 3.1: Update investment policy to better reflect the current realities of the investing environment, and to best meet the needs of the association

Action steps

  • Finance Committee to review
  • Prepare for board action at January or spring meeting

Objective 3.2: Begin the process of developing a UAFAA Business Plan for Sustainability

Action steps

 

  • Finance Committee to consider
    • Benefactor, gaming, Fred Meyer Community Rewards, Membership drives, etc.
  • Build a more realistic, detailed budget for FY17
  • Finalize plan for future board action at appropriate time (September?)

Objective 3.3: Sustain the Benefactor Fund through coordinated annual appeal and stewardship plan

Action steps

  • Coordinate Benefactor Fund appeals with Development so they don’t overlap with annual fund asks
  • Segment into previous donors, members who never donated, non-members who never donated (and couple with membership incentive discount)
  • Thank you letters, acknowledgement on website and The Alumnus

Objective 3.4: Build annual budgets that reflect reality from prior year and anticipate future

Action steps

 

  • Use bookkeeper’s year-end data
  • Strategic plan is guidepost (as investment priorities)
  • Strategic events calendar

Sustainability priority four: Pursue active and engaged partnerships that move UAFAA forward

Objective 4.1: Actively pursue meaningful participation in 2016 AFN in Fairbanks

Action steps

  • Reach out to AFN to see what options are…what are goals of our involvement? Tactics should help reach goals
  • Consider new, local partners—Chena Hot Springs? Northern Alaska Tour Company?
  • Review current lineup of benefits; confirm existing ones and explore expansion of others, ie, hockey ticket discount for UAFAA members

Objective 4.2: Partner with colleges and units on existing events to maximize results

Action steps

  • Sponsor alumni reception in partnership with English Department/Midnight Sun Writers
  • Science for Alaska Lecture Series, sponsor alumni reception
  • Career services, explore partnerships and collaboration
  • Summer Sessions, distinguished alumni lecture
  • Chancellor’s gala, Centennial 2017, or other main UAF events
  • Consider combining with other event for Alumni awards (eg, Usibelli or Honorary degree recipients)

Objective 4.3: Increase the number of community and affinity chapters by at least four by May 2016

Action steps

  • Identify areas where chapters make the most sense: firefighters affinity, volleyball, CEM, veterans; Seattle, DC, Houston, San Francisco, Portland.
  • Find opportunities to cultivate alum in those areas to sponsor a networking event
  • FAQ and template letter on starting up a new chapter
  • Bylaws change to require all 8 founding members of chapter to be UAFAA members
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