I'm a member of the ASAE Technology Council Section, and leader of the Thought Leadership subgroup. One of the topics we're tackling is pushing the limits of associations, and the possibilities given the advancement of technology.
One fun thought exercise was asking ourselves how we'd approach starting an association from scratch. With my paperless approach, I aim straight for all the digital tools out there making business easier and lowering the entry barrier for starting a business.
What follows is a list of the web applications I'd use to kickoff an organization if we started bare-bones, from scratch:
MailChimp for scheduled and automated email marketing.
Recurly for customer subscription billing, invoicing and tracking.
Hubspot for customer relationship management (CRM), including lead generation forms.
Harvest for tracking staff hours.
Asana for project and task management.
Google Apps for email, word processing, etc.
Squarespace for building a website.
Zenefits for human resources items like payroll, benefits and compliance.
While I didn't focus on the core business philosophy aspects that these digital tools would be working on behalf of, knowing that you could get started using some relatively low cost digital tools is also important.
Always a fun exercise to walkthrough. What else would you add to the list?