1. History and Purpose
In 1985, the ASMC National Executive Committee adopted a plan to invite selected American corporations to become full members. The National Board’s objective in extending full membership to select private sector companies was to help promote the continuous development of a partnership of information exchange between the military services and the thousands of private sector corporations that support them. A strategic partnership, based on mutual understanding, is a national imperative if DoD and its supporters are to meet to downsize, re-engineer their business processes, and outsource various functions to the private sector.
The purpose of the Corporate Membership program is to provide chapter members an opportunity to meet private sector comptrollers and gain an understanding of how they conduct business. The program also provides Corporate America an opportunity to understand how the Military Comptroller conducts business in the Defense environment. A secondary purpose is to support the Chapter and National Scholarship Programs through membership fees.
ASMC has much to offer America’s corporations. Forward looking companies will readily accept an offer of full membership when the business case advantages are presented to them.
2. Status of a Corporate Member
Corporate members are full chapter members with full voting rights and the right to hold chapter office. They should be included in all chapter business and mailed all chapter newsletters.
3. Membership Dues and Processing
Corporate membership fees are divided into two groups – Corporate and designee. Payment of the Corporate membership fee entitles the corporation to assign one designee member. Each additional representative of the corporation must pay the annual membership fee assessed individual active members. Rebates are paid to the chapter at $125 for the primary designee, and $5 for each additional designee. Invoices are mailed from National Headquarters directly to the corporate member two months in advance of expiration. A copy of the invoice is provided to the chapter, so that the chapter may provide follow-up. Corporate members may wish to change designees at this time. Membership dues are non refundable and non transferrable.
3. Chapter Competition
The recruiting and retention of corporate members earns Chapter Competition points for the local chapter. See the chapter on the National Awards Program for scoring details.
Many of the corporations joining ASMC are DoD contractors. It is incumbent on each ASMC member, DoD employee and corporate, to ensure the current procurement integrity laws and regulations are followed.
5. Recruiting and Retaining Corporate Members
Not every American corporation or company should be a member of ASMC. We need corporations that will support and complement ASMC goals in a professional manner. Potential corporate members should have an interest in DoD and the comptroller field. Generally, ASMC membership is correct for corporations involved in financial operations, accounting, computer systems (both software and hardware), banking, and governmental support activities. There are some exceptions and each exception should be evaluated based on the merits of the case.
The ASMC Corporate Program has been designed to accept as members large corporations as well as small companies, associations and educational institutions. Often small companies and educational institutions are highly interested in DoD and the comptroller field; they will welcome the opportunity to join ASMC. The following are examples of current ASMC corporate members:
- Credit Unions
- Accounting Firms
- Software Companies
- Hardware Organizations
- Professional Services Companies
- DoD Contractors
- Aerospace Companies
- Equipment Manufacturers or Sellers
- Food Providers
- Telecommunications Companies
- Power and Light Companies
Look around your base or installation to identify the companies conducting business; then decide if any of those companies would be appropriate as an ASMC corporate member. Locating the right person in the company can require some effort; the person who will want to buy and the person who can approve an association membership will be different in each company. The ASMC nominal membership fee typically will not require the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or the President’s approval. There is no need to approach these executives unless you either know the CEO/President, or the company is small and the CEO/President is the known decision maker. Of course, if the CEO/President agrees to join, you have a new corporate member.
In most corporations, marketing, business development, or public relations personnel are responsible for association memberships. This is a good place to start looking for the right person or that friendly face. If the company is a national corporation and doing work on your base, arrange an appointment with the senior manager on base. He or she are likely to have association approval authority. If not, you can ask for a referral to the right point of contact.
The recruiting and retention of corporate members is the same procedure as recruiting individual members. Corporations will join ASMC for the following reasons:
- Public Relations – It is important for a corporation to be known in its marketplace as a good organization. People want to do business with good companies. Many corporations will relish an opportunity to support a worthwhile program, give speeches, conduct workshops, publish articles, and exhibit and demonstrate products and services supports the corporate public relations programs.
- Advertisement – Chapter newsletters and the AFC are effective publications for corporate advertisements. The price of advertisements is reasonable, and the publication is focused on a select group of people. Even a chapter newsletter article announcing the membership of a corporation is a form of welcome advertising.
- Education – Corporate members want to learn more about the world in which they conduct business. The same is true for individual members. Corporations want to learn of future DoD trends, how DoD employees and military members live and work, and the direction of the Industry-Federal Partnership. A more informed corporate member can better serve the needs of the Industry-Government Partnership.
- Opportunities To Exhibit – Corporations need to exhibit themselves and their products and services. This type of exhibiting is not selling but a high-level form of marketing and educating the public to the advances being made in the private sector. ASMC chapter and national events provide corporate members with excellent opportunities to publicly exhibit their companies and products.
- Community Citizenship Responsibilities – Corporations want to be good corporate citizens by supporting local community organizations and charities. Being an ASMC corporate member is one way of supporting the country, DoD, and the local community.
- The Price is Right – The corporate membership fee is $250, plus $26 for each additional member of the corporation who wants to participate in ASMC. When compared to other associations, the cost of ASMC membership fee is relatively inexpensive.
The chapter should appoint a current member to serve as the Corporate Membership Chairperson, who should report to the Membership Chairperson. The corporate chairperson should identify potential members and establish chapter goals. After the first corporation joins the chapter it is recommended a person from that corporation be assigned recruiting duties since corporate people understand the private sector environment.
Once the chapter recruiting structure is in place and goals have been established the recruiter(s) needs to develop a presentation which will demonstrate to the corporation the benefits of ASMC membership. This presentation should include the following benefits: Corporate exposure, advertisement opportunities, PDI exhibits and sponsorship opportunities, opportunities for speaking and publication of articles, opportunities to learn about military organization, procedures, new programs and the military environment. A general discussion of how the corporate membership fees are used to fund scholarships will provide an assurance that moneys paid to ASMC are well spent. The presentation can be concluded with an invitation to the next chapter luncheon. Copies of the Armed Forces Comptroller should be provided at the conclusion of the presentation.
Should the invitation be accepted, the prospective member(s) should be escorted and formally introduced during the meeting. If necessary a follow-on meeting may be required to finalize the recruiting effort. The application for membership should be processed as quickly as possible so that the membership plaque can be formally presented during the next chapter meeting. If possible, photographs should be taken during the presentation with copies provided to the new corporate member and to the National Headquarters for possible publication in the Armed Forces Comptroller. The corporate members should be included in all activities of the chapter because they have skills which can be very beneficial to the chapter.
The corporate membership application is different than the individual form and should be used to process the application. A copy of the form on the ASMC website and can be reproduced for immediate use. However, each chapter should obtain a stock of the preprinted applications from the National Headquarters.