Examination of the Membership Practices of the YMCA of Burlington and Camden Counties
In 2011, the YMCA of Burlington and Camden Counties failed to meet expectations in terms of full facility membership units and dollars. The resulting decline in revenue severely threatened the financial health of the organization. Full Facility Membership declined by more than 15% from 2010 to 2011. The Mount Laurel Branch experienced a net decrease of 290 Adult Full Facility Member (AFFM) units, representing a net decrease of 11.9%. The Riverfront Branch experienced a loss of 69 AFFM units, a net decrease of 4.6%. Total membership revenue decreased from $3, 136,185 in 2010 to $3, 093,054 (YBCC, 2010).
This study examined the membership satisfaction of three groups closest to the membership. These groups represent the Staff Leadership Team, Policy Volunteers and the Adult Full Facility Members. Employing seven membership satisfaction factors utilized by the YUSA, (Impact, Engagement, Facilities, Staff Support, Value and Net Promoter), the research sought to formulate recommendations to improve the YMCA’s membership practices.
Based on the data collected through focus group interviews and a survey tool, the research reveals three significant results. These were the Value scores for all study groups were significantly lower than expected. Overall Satisfaction scores for all study groups were surprisingly higher than expected considering the low Value scores and Net Promoter scores for all study groups. These lead to the conclusion YMCA members generally enjoy their membership but feel it may not be worth the cost. The study details the results and presents a set of recommendations for YMCA decision makers.