It’s been a full year since the launch of myAlliance, the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities’ online collaboration portal. In meeting the challenge of learning to navigate a new networking system, we’ve also learned what our members value most.

"The myAlliance online portal brings together all the best benefits of Alliance membership in one location," said Jed Dews, associate executive director of Pendleton Place in Greenville, South Carolina. "By bringing multiple tools and features under one platform, the Alliance has made it easy to stay connected to my colleagues in nonprofit human service organizations and be responsive to changing trends. Best of all, the myAlliance portal is customizable, which makes interactions more personable and puts a human face to the amazing people behind the keyboard."

Sarah Proctor, chief finance officer at ACH Child and Family Services in Fort Worth, Texas, values myAlliance as a forum for sharing ideas, experiences, and knowledge with peers. She stated that "we don’t have to reinvent the wheel. MyAlliance provides a very practical way to network and share knowledge on almost any topic with people all over the country."

"One of the things I like most about myAlliance is that I have access to so many sources in one location," said Shannon Stokes, director of special projects for One Hope United in Chicago, Illinois. "The library offers academic literature, recent discussions by leaders in the field, and documents submitted by fellow Alliance members on multiple topics. There are few, if any, other places where I can find such a wealth of information I trust in one place."

While at the 2016 Alliance National Conference in Los Angeles, attendees had a first glimpse of myAlliance. The portal changed the collaboration and networking experience for the Alliance network. Members found the freedom to create and manage their own profiles, actively connect with members who have similar interests, and easily join or leave Alliance Peer Exchange (APEX) groups.

Fast-forward to a year later, and our APEX group homepages allow for interactive problem-solving, lively discussions, document collaboration, and event planning in one centralized location. Top-level discussions provide a forum for members to share news about their organizations, ask questions at a membership-wide level, and learn which trends and issues are affecting others in the sector.

The single sign-on feature grants members full access to the Alliance Library collection, which is now securely housed on myAlliance. Features include member materials, curated topical collections, as well as complimentary access to EBSCOhost databases and the Families in Society (FIS) journals. Members also have an opportunity to suggest a resource or submit materials to the collection.

The Alliance Library has created a topic index, providing a direct springboard to our growing collection and sector resources. Curated by subject matter experts within the Alliance network, the index offers cutting-edge information on a diverse collection of interest areas prioritized by the network including data and evaluation, health and human services, neuroscience, leadership, Council on Accreditation (COA), and more.

Our numbers have grown since the 2016 Alliance National Conference, too. There are now 1,156 members in myAlliance, and 81 percent of our member organizations have joined the platform. MyAlliance hosts numerous APEX groups that all members are welcome to join and use, as well as work groups on specific policy topics. 1,291 members make up our combined APEX groups, and we’ve launched several new APEX groups:

CEO APEX. The CEO APEX brings together top executives from the network to exchange knowledge on relevant topics while discussing issues and challenges facing the sector. Please note that this APEX is only available for the top executive of an Alliance member organization.

Advancing Equity APEX. National leaders from the social sector come together to develop and advance diversity, equity, and inclusion as a driving force in meeting the needs of children, families, and communities.

Health and Human Services Intersection APEX. Members collaborate to transform health outcomes in the United States by leveraging the collective wisdom of the human-serving sector to engage health care providers and funders. Together, they build upon best practices and develop innovative delivery models and practices that improve health care systems.

If you have not yet experienced the platform, we invite you to log in and explore all myAlliance offers. We are confident that with your participation, myAlliance will continue to improve the way our sector connects with other organizations and communities. If you’ve registered for an Alliance event or webinar, the same login will gain you access to myAlliance.