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We’re a Canadian Association. Can the AMS handle Canadian tax and is it hosted in Canada?

Nothing is more frustrating than investing precious time in evaluating a software solution only to find out in the eleventh hour that while it has the association-specific operational functionality, it is not able to provide Canadian functionality.

One of the first questions you should ask is: can the association management system (AMS) handle Canada-specific requirements?

Because we are a Canadian technology company, when selecting solutions to offer our clients we look to make sure those solutions address Canadian terminology, tax issues and hosting and security concerns.

In evaluating AMS solutions, we selected Avectra for our product portfolio because it was cloud-based, provided a rich offering of features associations require, and it works for Canadian associations.

Terminology

Avectra provides default terminology appropriate for Canada with regard to address fields in member profiles and event registrations, as well as system-wide labeling.  While it could be argued that this is a minor thing, member experienced is enhanced by not having the distraction of field descriptions suitable for the U.S. but not for Canada.  And, any negative impact on member interaction with the association online platform is not a minor thing if it deters members from full participation.

Tax

If your association offers items for purchase, depending on the type of purchase, federal, provincial and sales tax on those purchases may come into play.  This could impact membership, events and other items for purchase.  Avectra can handle Canadian taxes properly:  be sure that the AMS that you are evaluating can as well.  If a belabored manual process is suggested as a workaround, you risk members avoiding a purchase due to the ‘hassle factor’ and you burden your staff with an unnecessary administrative task with each transaction.  The better solution is to select an AMS that can do this automatically.

Hosting

Avectra provides Canadian associations with a cloud-based AMS that is hosted in Toronto.  This is important because it ensures your compliance with Canada’s privacy laws, including the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA).

Additional peace of mind comes with know your solution resides in a data centre with state-of-the-art security that would be cost-prohibitive for most associations to attempt to secure on their own.  On top of the robust security, by virtue of being hosted, your data is more accessible given data centre guarantees of accessibility and is not subject to downtime caused by natural disasters or server outages.  Hosting also provides regular back up of your data, a critical procedure often overlooked.

By selecting a Canada-ready, Canada-hosted AMS, you alleviate many headaches, assure compliance, and remove another potential barrier to member usage.

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