Provide a way to change membership level during renewal
During membership renewal a member may have more than one membership level available. Choosing among them is cumbersome. The member clicks one button to renew at his current level or clicks another button to choose a different level.
Also, changing the membership level doesn’t act like a renewal as regards calculation of the Renewal Due date. Desired Behaviour
Use one button for both functions. If multiple membership levels are available, show “Renew and choose membership level” on the “Renew until …” button. This would give the member a choice that looks like that on the membership application form.
The membership Renewal Due date would need to be calculated based on the level that was selected, since different levels may have different renewal periods.
An option may need to be added to the membership level renewal policy to prohibit member self-service level changes, which would prevent the Change Membership Level button from showing on forms. Why
We have in the past only offered an annual membership (Regular). We have now created a three-year discounted membership as another level (Regular – 2011 3-Year Deal). The process for a member to select the new level is too cumbersome and confusing. First, he has to know another level exists. Then he has to use the Change Membership Level button instead of the Renew Until button. If he chooses the Change Membership Level button, the Renewal Due date is calculated differently that for a renewal (it’s based on the current date at the time of the level change).
We have recently moved our membership database over to WA. We wanted to offer our members recurring payments, since many of them have requested this. There were two options to do this. The first was to change ALL of our members to recurring payments, which was not feasible. The second was to create a second member lever which was identical except had recurring payments and allow members to switch from one to the other. Sounds simple, right?
Well, for members who renew before the renewal date it bills them the full year's dues and leaves their renewal date the same since we have a fixed membership year. For members who have paid more than one year in advance, not only does it not advance their membership by another year, but it wipes out the advance payments! The worst part is, that it doesn't keep a record of what their old renewal date was, so I have to go back and research the date.
This is a nightmare! And I'm being told by the developers that THIS IS BY DESIGN. This is the way they INTENDED it to work.
Brad Cottrell commented
My club is currently in a trial of WA. We were almost ready to start our paid account, when we discovered this serious problem with membership level change. Please bring this request up to priority and get it done soon.
MLA Association Manager commented
We are getting strong feedback from our members that they would like to have the ability to change membership level at the same time as renewing.
Ali Siegert commented
Members should be able to change their membership level when they are renewing (i.e. when their status is pending). For our organization, the renewal period is the ONLY time a member would change their level. PLEASE make change so that our members can change their level when renewing their membership.
Kenneth Koubek commented
We have discounted membership levels for unemployed or student or retirees. We also have our renewals based on the calendar year. If a persons employment level changes for any reason during the year and they want to take advantage of the discounted level for the upcoming renewal, they have to wait until their membership expires so that they can change the level without a new invoice being issued (essentially extra invoicing during a calendar year). We also are initiating an auto-renewal membership that includes a discount. If a person wants to change the level before the current membership expires, they are automatically invoiced for the new discounted level for the rest of the year, even though they have paid for the full calendar year without a discount. When renewal notices go out to members during the last quarter, if they want to renew at the discounted rate or at any other level, they have to ignore the notice and wait until the current membership expires to change the level which then generates an invoice for that next year and effectively renewing their membership but at the new level. Renewals should allow a choice of levels for the member so that they can renew at any time at the new level without automatically issuing a new invoice till the end of the current membership term.
Glenn Ostrander commented
For those organizations using membership levels to provide multi-year renewal choices, the inability of Wild Apricot to correctly calculate 'Renewal Due On' dates, when membership level is changed during the renewal process, makes it impossible to fully implement self-service renewals. Any renewal, with membership level change, prior to the end of the current membership period results in the member being overcharged for one membership period.
This issue has been open since 2010, today it has 86 votes and 55 comments, the last comment from Wild Apricot was three years ago and contains an invalid link, no update to development status has been made in eight years, user requests for status of a fix have gone answered, ... on and on.
Please, Apricots, give this important, necessary and urgent product design defect your attention. At least give us some idea of when a fix will be available and any advice about a workaround (other than to go back to manual renewal processing).
I can see this problem has been described in 2010 and has not been resolved. It needs to be. As an organization using WA for the first time and now going through its first renewal cycle, this problem has become transparently obvious.
On renewal some some members want to change their membership level -- in particular, changing from an Annual membership to a 6-year membership (with a discount). As typical, we encourage members to renew before their expiry date, but in doing so, the new expiry date is NOT calculated from the current expiry date (by simply adding 6 to it). A renewal without a membership level change is handled correctly but the fails when a membership level change is involved.
Karen Garritano commented
Piling on -- the Membership Level allows for one level to be a pre-requisite for the higher level, but the higher level resets the membership date.
We have a membership renewal date based on when the member signs our MSA. When they move to a higher level, they sign additional contracts, but not a new MSA.
Jane Guerrini commented
I have discovered that when a member renews their membership and at the same time changes their membership level (either increases or decreases contribution level) that the renewal date does not move but remains the current date and will have to be manually change. This is a big problem when you are trying to get your membership to increase contributions. Technical support told me that this is an ongoing problem. Are there any fixes in the works or a possible work around?
Tom Berry commented
We have a bunch of different membership levels, and we occasionally have people changing from one to another. Why on earth would someone in WA design think it was a good idea to automatically change the renewal due date if this happens?
I'm flattered to think the designers believed us users are so perfect that we could never enter the wrong level by mistake and then have to change it after the fact, but that happens.
We also have members who were in bundles until the administrator decides to have them removed; if we want to keep in touch with these people, we have to change their membership level to individual, and hey presto, they are automatically extended for a year from current date even though they aren't renewing.
Fix this, please!
David Goodrich commented
This is a very serious issue. I am dumbfounded that you have been aware of it for so long and have not fixed it. In fact you recognized it as such in your response to me in April 2016 (Inquiry 13088) and stated you were working on it.
There are two issues here. One is renewing at a different level ($20 student, $50 regular, $100 contributing, etc) and the second is the term of membership (1 year, 2 years, etc.) which is treated as a membership level. The two should be disconnected. A person should join or renew at the desired level and separately choose the term of membership. That would solve a lot.
The statements in these comments that the program does not change the renewal date for a level change are not exactly correct. What the program does is set the renewal date to the end of the current membership year. In other words, if a member renewed a calendar year membership on 12/27/17 at a different level, the next renewal date would be set to 1/1/2018 -- no change. But a member who renews at a different level on 1/2/18 will have the next renewal date set to 1/1/2019. Only the members who renew before the expiration of their current membership are mishandled. In our organization we get about a quarter of our renewals before the end of the old year and the remainder in the new year. So some members are correct and others need to be manually corrected.
Frankly, I cannot imagine a situation where a member would want to change levels in the middle of a year and not at the time of renewing. We have been using Wild Apricot since 2011 and have about 700 members and no one has ever asked to change a level midyear. If it ever did come up it would probably be necessary to create a manual invoice as the price would most likely have to be pro-rated. Asking a program such as Wild Apricot to handle these calculations would be unreasonable. Therefore, level changes should simply be incorporated in the renewal process. In fact, all that is really needed is to change the manner in which the next renewal date is set to make it advance one period in all cases. (A period could be one or more years.)
This is a major glitch and needs to be addressed promptly.
Dale and Meg DeJager commented
All of our membership levels renew/expire on the first of the year. We also need this feature. Right now if a member is paid up to next year and they change their membership level and pay for the new level, the renewal date is not changed. This is bad. What is desired is for the renewal date to be advanced as it is when a member renews. We have to find these records and do it manually now.
National Employee commented
It would be nice if when we had to do a manual renewal/level change that when we clicked renewal we as admins had the option to do a level change at the time of renewal. Instead we have to choose edit then select level change. I have many members that do not have emails on file and have to send out mailers. I am obtaining email address slowly but its still a process. Also I have several chapters that have large banquets and the ticket include membership. So each spring I have to manually, one by one renew over 400 people. I can not use the bulk import with excel b/c i need to show payment and be able to export the renewed so I can print membership cards and email. It would be nice to be able to select and renew multiple members at the same time.
Scot McConnachie commented
Most of our memberships are monthly but we are now encouraging our members to join for longer terms, such as quarterly.
1) I agree that we should have a button that allows renewal and a level change. When the level change options are shown, the current level should remain on the list of options; this is to allow the member to change his mind or to recover from a mistake in pressing the button in the first place.
2) There is still a place for allowing a level change within a membership term. For example we have individual converting to bundle memberships and vice versa. While prorating and re-invoicing for this change would be desirable it should at least remain as a option for those organizations who wish to use it.
Darlene Devendorf commented
For our organization, a level change is a change in the length of the membership period which involves a discounted price not a change in privileges. Members doing a level change as part of their renewal are finding that they have lost membership time if they do it before the current renewal date. When we were vetting Wild Apricot we missed this as being an issue. I would prefer our members not losing membership time to allowing a level change at any time during the membership cycle. Perhaps this could be a "checked" option for a membership level - allowing a change in level but basing the Renewal Due date on the current Renewal Due date for that member vs. basing it on the date of the level change.
Stacey Glaser commented
I concur with all the other posts in this thread and find it hard to believe that this feature is missing from this system, and for so long. This has been an issue for many people. Please consider at the very least making this simple change so that our members are able to change their membership level at the time their membership renewal is due. No prorating or membership change during the year(s) just the simple ability to change during the renewal process. Thanks.
I think we agree with this comment by Mark commented January 2, 2017 8:29 PM Flag as inappropriate
Allow membership level changes only during renewal -
Provide a selection under Levels that allows members to change levels only when renewing.
That would satisfy our requirements. No need to pro-rate, offer refunds, etc. Members would simply renew at the new level, at the appropriate rate, and for the same membership term.
Our initial membership term is 3 years, our renewal 2 years.
The Renewal button on the profile causes problems, it suggests they can renew for 3 years, and will do it .... wrong term and wrong rate.
We have found we can instruct our members to use the Change button on their profile to select the Renewal membership at the right rate. It is a work around, but will do the job.
But any user can click on the Renewal button and cause issues.
We would like an option to remove / hide that Renewal button from the initial member profile page and the member edit page.
Scot McConnachie commented
Currently the option to Change level is no longer available once the invoice at the current level is issued. This proposal would allow a member to continue to change her/his/their membership level in their profile after an invoice has been issued for the next membership term.
Depending upon how the membership organization works there could be two options with this change:
1) Allow the member to change the membership level before the due date but after the old invoice has been issued.
2) In addition to the situation in 1, allow the member to change level after the new membership period has begun. There might be proration options with this choice.
The default probably should be the current situation and would be represented by neither option being selected.
Suellen Honeychuck commented
We are new users of Wild Apricot and so far have been very pleased. However, as many have already commented, we have also discovered an issue that is going to cause a lot more work for us. We would like our members to receive the list of all membership levels when they respond to a reminder to renew. We have a number of student members who need to join as voting members once they graduate from their paralegal program and as it stands now they will be unable to do that easily and are less likely to contact us to make the change and thus simply NOT renew which means we lose membership. Please fix this ASAP. This has apparently been going on for FIVE years. It seems like a pretty logical thing one would want an association management program to be able to do without a lot of extra work!
Paul Ghazar commented
I agree. This issue causes lots of confusion and additional administrative work on our volunteers to maintain/respond to member emails and manually have to update every time someone changes their membership level after receiving a reminder, but before the renewal date.