Each spring HFMA sends a survey to chapter leaders to ask for feedback on how we support their volunteer experience. Part 1 addressed "the most important things HFMA could do to further support and enhance the volunteer experience." Part 2 addressed the survey statement: "If any rating is less than a 6 or a 7, please provide feedback so that we can improve the experience for future chapter leaders."
This month we will wrap up the final comments and questions on LTC locations and schedules, training opportunities for chapter leaders, the availability of real-time reports, and HFMA's role in CBSC goal setting.
From various surveys
Comment: The Leadership Training Conference (LTC) is a great preparation tool for our leadership responsibilities; however, we are booked solid the whole time we are there. It is almost cruel to send us to these "vacation" locales and to not give us any free time to relax.
Comment: LTC and Fall Presidents Meetings (FPM) meetings are very helpful although both could probably be half a day shorter to save some funds for smaller chapters and save volunteers one day less away from work.
Response: These two different viewpoints above illustrate the dilemma in planning these meetings. We want to provide as much content as possible for our chapter leaders and provide it in an attractive setting, but the availability of chapter funding for training varies greatly. We offer conference rates at the hotels for several days before and after the actual conference for individuals or chapters who would like to spend a little extra time relaxing without forcing chapters with very tight budgets to bear additional costs beyond training. FPM meetings, on the other hand are planned entirely by each region and any changes to the length of the meeting are determined by the leadership in the region. In most instances, at the FPM location, too, conference rates are available for several days before and after. Your regional executive is the best source for FPM location information.
Comment: LTC is great training, but not all chapter leaders get to attend. Training at the chapter level is often lacking especially at the board level.
Response: HFMA provides training for new chapter leaders at LTC. We realize that not all chapters can send their full leadership team; however, chapter leaders can access LTC presentations.
In addition, we offer training webinars throughout the year. The webinars for the entire year are listed in the Chapter Planning Calendar and Resource Guide, which is distributed at LTC, but is also available on the website. If you cannot participate in a live webinar, contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a copy of the webinar recording and handouts.
Finally, Chapter Relations staff is always available to walk you through your responsibilities and the available tools to help you do your job. In fact, we often find these one-on-one relationships to be a valuable resource for us as well because we learn from you which tools are working well and whether there are opportunities to improve resources we already provide or add resources that may be lacking.
Our job is to do whatever we can to make your job easier, so call early and often at (800) 252-4362 and ask to speak to a member of the Chapter Relations team, or email email@example.com and ask for assistance. We are here to help.
President and Regional Executive
Comment: As chapter president I had to coordinate the efforts of a large number of volunteers to ensure that we stayed on track to meet Chapter Balanced Scorecard (CBSC) targets. Having the CBSC and DCMS reports updated more timely (or real time) would have been very helpful.
Response: We generally update reports on the website monthly; however, fresh reports are always available. Just send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org and staff will be happy to pull fresh reports for you. The only exceptions are Membership End-of-Month reports which contain audited numbers and the list of newly certified members, both of which are only available monthly.
Comment: National HFMA seems disinterested in feedback from chapter leadership regarding goal setting. There is no partial credit consideration. The education hour goals are too high. The minimum percentage for certified members is 7.9% (comment written in April 2012). If a member is not HFMA certified or a CPA, there is little real motivation to attend education- especially in economically challenging times.
Response: The Regional Executive Council-comprised of 11 elected volunteer leaders (one from each region), and chaired by a volunteer leader from the HFMA Board of Directors-sets the goals for the chapters and for HFMA as an organization. The RE's solicit input from chapters during the Fall Presidents Meetings and during conference calls with chapter presidents throughout the year.
Each year the Council debates each goal, metric, and weight with an eye both on the needs of their chapters and the needs of the Association as a whole. Each member of the Council is required to have served as a chapter president and each member of the Council is elected by the chapters in the region they represent.
The goal for education has been a two-part goal for over five years. It is the lesser of .5% growth over the past year or equivalent to the second highest average hours per member over the past five years. For a chapter that reached 18,000 hours in 2011-12, the 2013-14 goal would translate to 90 additional hours. (Click here for more information on the newly-approved 2013-14 CBSC.)
The certification goal is also a two-part goal. It is the lesser of the HFMA average for 2011-12 or 1 more exam taken. This may be a good time to point out that the Council reviewed this goal and decided to change it for the 2013-14 DCMS year to either the HFMA average or a five percent improvement over the prior year, but a minimum of one exam passed - which is a change from exams taken. (See Introducing the 2013-14 CBSC in this month's issue of Notes from National).
Certification is recognized as an important part of membership because it drives both education and member retention, which the Council cited in making the change.
HFMA is a volunteer organization. The majority of HFMA Directors are former chapter leaders-volunteers who have walked in your shoes and who recognize that the health of HFMA as an association relies on strong chapters, and strong chapters rely on the health of the national Association.
Chapters provide targeted local education specific to their members and are the personal face of HFMA.
National office staff provides broader-based national education opportunities, carries out the directives of the National Board of Directors approved Strategic Plan, and provides research and support for individual members and chapters. The strength of the Association ensures that members whose jobs take them to different locations can count on a high level of services no matter which chapter they choose to align with.
Publication Date: Thursday, November 29, 2012