Most professional membership bodies will have a view on the engagement and satisfaction of their younger members, whether that be anecdotally or through research.  And most will also be aware that young professionals, entering the workplace for the first time or studying towards qualifications, have needs that differ somewhat from other member types.

But what perceptions and attitudes have these young professionals established during their initial relationships with a professional body?  And are those in higher education, still considering the direction their career will take, even aware of the opportunities and support a professional body could offer? 

We are carrying out research to find out more about the challenges faced by today’s and tomorrow’s professionals, and the support they are seeking as they begin and develop their careers.

We are looking to uncover what these young professionals know and don’t know about professional membership bodies, what contact they have had, and how connected they feel. 

Our aim is to better understand the value and relevance professional bodies might hold for the next generation of young professionals.

In partnership with YouthSight, we are inviting young professionals - currently studying or recently graduated from higher education - to take part in an online questionnaire. Along with our panel, younger members from professional organisations are also being invited to take part in the study. We will explore whether these young professionals feel their membership body understands and responds to their particular challenges and how they see their future as members. 

Key findings of the research will be presented at MemCom 2018. The research report will present, interpret and discuss the views of young professionals in the context of their awareness and connections with professional membership bodies. It will uncover the value they place on key elements of professional support, and how well they feel professional organisations understand and respond to their particular needs. 

This research is supported by YouthSight, owners of the UK’s largest youth and student research panels.



PREVIOUS RESEARCH: Engaging with younger & newly qualified members

A number of organisations in the membership sector had noted that the lapse rate of student members - when transitioning from the student category to full membership  - seemed higher than overall lapse rates. They also noted that these members, as well as those in the first few years of their membership, appeared to have different interests, needs, values to other members. 

We investigated the successes and challenges of engaging with these two important groups of members: what initiatives are working, what new approaches are planned, and how these groups of members can contribute their knowledge and collaborate with the wider membership.  28 professional membership bodies took part in our study, and the topline findings were delivered at MemCom on the 19th May 2016.

You can download a copy of some of the research highlights from the foot of this page

The full research report contains (anonymously) a wealth of information provided by the participating bodies, including ideas for ways of getting these members involved, outlines of engagement activities and pages of shared advice. Membership bodies that didn't take part in the research can email us to request a copy (pdf) of the report.



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Professional bodies and the next generation