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Jenny Baker
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2023 Exit Survey

SIOP Member Committee Survey Subcommittee: Katye Griswold, Cameron Klein, Rushika De Bruin, Kelsey Byerly, Harry Kohn, Kat Defilippi, and Erik Zito

To better understand why SIOP members decided not to renew their membership with SIOP, members who did not renew by the June 30, 2022 deadline (N = 2,388) were surveyed by the SIOP Membership Committee Survey Subcommittee June 6-19, 2023. 

Of those who decided not to renew, 59 people responded to the survey, so caution should be used when interpreting the results provided below. 

Demographics:

  • Of those who responded, 42% were SIOP Members, 37% were Students, and 12% were Associates at the time their membership expired

  • Gender breakdown: 55% women; 38% men; 7% prefer not to respond

  • Race and ethnicity breakdown: 59% White; 13% Black or African American; 9% Asian; and 6% Hispanic, Latino/a, or Spanish; 13% prefer not to respond 

The online survey was sent by email and consisted of five quantitative questions, four write-in questions, and two demographic questions. The SIOP Survey Subcommittee conducted the analysis and generated the full report, which can be found on the SIOP Survey website

Our focus in this article is to share a high-level overview of the results and any key emerging themes. Upcoming articles will focus on actions that are planned and underway as a result of this survey. 

Overall Findings

  • Respondents most often cited “the cost of SIOP dues being too high” as the reason for not renewing (47%), whereas 39% indicated that “the SIOP membership benefits were not meeting their needs.”

  • Approximately 54% of respondents who decided not to renew their membership had been members of SIOP for 5 years or less, and another 10% had been members for 21+ years.

  • Most respondents reported they were unsure if they would rejoin SIOP (38%), whereas 34% reported that they would rejoin either within the next year or at some point in the future. 

Review of the Comments

Qualitative responses regarding reasons for not renewing, intentions to rejoin, and membership appeal, were reviewed and synthesized into two main themes. 

Topic

Example

Count

Membership dues not meeting burrent benefits

I would like to join, but I am not sure if I would want to pay the high cost. I am sure the price is only going to go higher and I do not want to get caught into the rising price.

If I can clearly understand the value and see real benefits to being a member, then I'll rejoin.

29

Focus and resources not relevant

Focus more on practitioners in various settings (e.g., higher education administration) and possibly differing membership categories with less or more benefits.

Not a lot of activities during the year, limited benefits for nonacademics, primary focus on and for academics

13

*Some comments had multiple categories

 

Priority Areas Suggested Based on Results

The annual Exit Survey is one way the Membership Committee garners insight for retaining SIOP members. Based on the feedback received from respondents, we recommend SIOP consider the following priority areas to achieve greater membership retention.

Membership Dues not Meeting Current Benefits

High membership dues continue to be the top primary and secondary reason individuals decided not to renew their membership, with several respondents expressing that the benefits of their membership did not justify the cost. This was especially prevalent with students, for whom cost was the top primary reason for not renewing, and those early in their career. Those who reported cost as a potential secondary reason elaborated that the resources available are not applicable across different industries and career stages.This is tied with employers not subsidizing or reimbursing employees for renewing their membership or attending the conference. We hope that as SIOP’s prominence continues to grow, more employers may be willing to cover the cost of employees’ dues.      

We recommend SIOP provide better communication of benefits in relation to the cost of membership to improve perceptions of membership value. Additionally, respondents suggested that SIOP create tiered membership, where higher dues are associated with access to more benefits and resources. 

Practitioner–Academic Collaborations and Resources

Survey results also demonstrated dissatisfaction with both practitioner- and academic-focused resources, with some reporting that the resources are not relevant across different careers. For the latter group in particular, this translates to nonrenewal when they change careers. We recommend SIOP continue to seek feedback about how to better align relevant resources with the needs of the membership community as a whole.

Some respondents also indicated that SIOP primarily focuses on academia, as evidenced by what is presented at the Annual Conference. SIOP has taken strides to encourage content geared toward practitioner–academic collaboration in an effort to attenuate the scientist–practitioner gap and enhance practical application of I-O research.      
The Membership Committee seeks to create an inclusive membership for all I-O related professionals and focuses on the attraction, selection, and retention of all SIOP members. For additional feedback or questions, please contact our survey subcommittee.

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