At the beginning of the year, the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) distributed a brief survey to members who had joined or re-joined after a lapse in their membership, between 2018 and 2019. The main purpose of the survey was to better understand the needs of our new members so that we can develop benefits and programs that are valuable to the incoming generation of environmental health professionals. The survey was sent to 3,600 members; 22% were members in the Emerging Professional category.
According to the survey, the primary reason that members joined in the past two years was to pursue or maintain their environmental health credentials. These results are in keeping with feedback that the NEHA Member Services staff hear from both long term and newer members every day - credentialing is essential to your career and you rely on membership to make it affordable and manageable.
Overwhelmingly, members conveyed that they find value in NEHA’s online learning courses but would like to see improvements in both content and ease of access to these resources. 60% of the respondents cited e-learning as the benefit they would most like to see improved and expanded upon moving forward. The remaining 40% were distributed evenly among increased resources and opportunities for networking, leadership, and advocacy. As one respondent put it:
“The bulk of staff are doing inspections daily. We are doing more with less. We need training that is relevant, short and efficient, and that can be used in the field today.”
These findings have not only helped to provide a basic understanding of the needs of our members but have also highlighted areas where can focus our attention in the coming years. These include:
- Simplifying the process for members to utilize e-learning
- Expanding and improving our online learning resources
- Continuing to explore ways for our membership and credentialing to be harmonized and mutually beneficial.
NEHA would like to thank the 550 members who took the time to thoughtfully respond to the 2020 Membership Survey. We take your feedback seriously and we strive to be an association that continues to understand and address your professional needs.