The MARAC Membership Development Committee is pleased to announce the recent completion of a full summary of the 2012 membership survey. This report is now available on the MARAC homepage and on the committee’s webpage. A copy will also be placed in the University of Maryland’s digital repository (DRUM).
The survey, which included 40 questions for MARAC’s 40th anniversary, received a 32.3% response rate with 356 out of 1100 active members participating. Questions focused on a number of areas, including basic demographics (age, gender, race, education), the work situations and activities of respondents, as well as interest in continuing education and involvement in MARAC and other professional organizations. The final portion of the survey also included three free response questions, which asked respondents to name the most important issues MARAC should address in the next five years. This set of questions along with a final question asking for additional comments yielded nearly 600 responses.
Several major themes emerged in the survey results. The most prominent of these was member interest in training on both new technologies and archival work with digital media. In a question that asked respondents to select the topics they would most like to learn about in the next 5 years, 5 of the top 6 most desired topics were directly related to digital initiatives, and in the important issues free response section at the end of the survey, electronic records management was the most cited concern representing over 24% of all comments. Other prominent themes in the survey results were the importance of MARAC’s role as an advocate for the profession and the need for the continued affordability of membership fees, conference registration, and workshops.
In the coming months, MARAC leadership will be looking closely at the survey results for information to guide the future of the organization. To spearhead this effort, a working group within Steering is currently reviewing the MARAC strategic plan in concert with an action plan based on recommendations from the survey.