Association management company

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An association management company (AMC) provides management and specialized administrative services to trade associations and professional associations using a for-profit approach that runs not-for-profit associations like businesses.[1] Many AMCs serve as an organization's headquarters, managing day-to-day operations and becoming the public face of the organization.[2]

Outsourced services may include executive, administrative and financial management; strategic planning; membership development; public affairs and lobbying; education and professional development; statistical research; meetings management; and marketing and communication services.[3] Orienting board members is high on the list of tasks undertaken; AMCs educate new nonprofit board members on their roles, laying out expectations for fiduciary oversight, and pointing out the pitfalls of conflicts of interest.[4]

The association management company industry was more than 110 years old by 2014. At that time, there were more than 600 AMCs worldwide collectively managing associations ranging in budget size from $50,000 to $16 million and representing more than 3 million members.[5] Many nonprofit groups are not aware that such management companies exist, but they can be found in most major cities.[6]

Current employees of AMCs are eligible to apply to become a Certified Association Executive.[7]

The Alexandria, Va.-based AMC Institute accredits AMCs under the guidance of the American National Standards Institute.[8]

Fernley & Fernley is the oldest AMC in the United States, having been established in Philadelphia in 1886.[9] Chicago-based SmithBucklin is the world's largest AMC,[10] although Geneva, Switzerland-based MCI Group, a professional conference organiser that offers AMC services, has more employees: 1,900 as of 2016.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Thomas, Willis (2013). The Basics of Achieving Professional Certification: Enhancing Your Credentials. CRC Press. p. 78. ISBN 9781466554566. 
  2. ^ "What is the AMC model? - AMC Institute (AMCI)". Retrieved 2016-05-22. 
  3. ^ "What is the AMC model? - AMC Institute (AMCI)". Retrieved 2016-05-22. 
  4. ^ Dubey, Anikesh (2009). Association Management: A Distinct Field of Management. India: Global India Publications. pp. Page143. ISBN 9789380228587. 
  5. ^ Duckworth, Holly (2014). Ctrl+Alt+Believe: Reboot Your Association For Success. Balboa Press. p. 78. ISBN 978-1-50432-525-7. 
  6. ^ Cox, John B. (2015). ASAE Handbook of Professional Practices in Association Management. Jossey-Bass. p. 38. ISBN 978-1118775394. 
  7. ^ Harris, Philip M. (2001). The Guide to National Professional Certification Programs. HRD Press. p. 83. ISBN 978-0874256321. 
  8. ^ "Accreditation - AMC Institute (AMCI)". Retrieved 2016-05-22. 
  9. ^ "A new face at Phila.'s Fernley & Fernley". philly-archives. Retrieved 2016-05-30. 
  10. ^ "5 Questions for SmithBucklin President Matt Sanderson – PCMA Convene". Retrieved 2016-05-30. 
  11. ^ "About Us | MCI at a Glance". Retrieved 2016-05-30. 

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