National Association for Healthcare Quality

Transitioning from an AMC

.orgSource worked with NAHQ, a fast-growing association, to establish a new headquarters office and core team operations and transition all transaction processing operations from an association management company to the association.


Founded in 1976, the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ) is the only organization dedicated to healthcare quality professionals, defining the standard of excellence for the profession, and preparing a coordinated, competent workforce to lead and advance healthcare quality across the continuum of healthcare. NAHQ offers the Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality® (CPHQ), the only accredited certification in healthcare quality, in addition to comprehensive educational programming, networking opportunities, and career resources for those new to the profession as well as the experienced executive.

The challenge

Over the past few years, NAHQ has experienced tremendous growth that continues to this day. A refreshed mission and intense focus on value resulted in significant increases in the areas of membership, education and certification. In addition, there is a strong potential to expand NAHQ’s market share both domestically and internationally. This pace of growth precipitated a monumental transformation for NAHQ. On December 1, 2017, NAHQ became a stand-alone organization after more than 20 years of management by an association management company. The transition enables flexibility in meeting member needs, agility in decision making and innovation in delivering new programs and services for healthcare quality professionals around the world.

But to get there, NAHQ first needed to establish goals, direction and decisions related to operations, staffing, technology, financing and even a relocation to a new physical headquarters. NAHQ turned to .orgSource to assist with:

  • Smoothly transferring operations without disrupting member services or negatively impacting revenue
  • Creating a technology strategy that enhances NAHQ’s ability to expand its market share, improves customer experiences, simplifies maintenance and upgrades
  • Selecting a dynamic headquarters space that allows for growth and is accessible from public transportation and O’Hare International Airport
  • Overseeing project and resource management to support the transition

The Solution

The transition project had two major phases.

Phase 1: to establish the headquarters office and core team operations within 75 days.
Phase 2: to transition all transaction processing operations—IT, finance, corporate development/sales and customer service from the association management company to the stand-alone organization within 140 days.
Both phases were completed on time.

One of the first transition decisions made was using cloud-based technology vs. premise-based technology. This critical decision provided direction in other areas—staffing, location and financing—as the cloud allows outsourcing providers and their solutions to better integrate, reduces the need for IT troubleshooting, training and updates, and enables remote working.

.orgSource then helped NAHQ design and implement a variety of other technology and operational solutions, including:

  • association management system that integrates with a learning management system
    community platform
  • marketing automation system
  • website/e-business solution
  • office networking, desktop, and office productivity software
  • phone and security systems

In addition, .orgSource provided guidance with evaluating and selecting outsourcing providers for accounting, customer service, and IT support, as well as the hiring and onboarding of new staff.

The Results

Proof of success will be NAHQ’s ability to achieve its growth goals. However, achieving two major transitions in less than five months is a phenomenal success and a testimony to NAHQ leadership and staff who made it happen with the support of .orgSource.


“.orgSource has stood by me and NAHQ from the beginning, and I am certain the transition was a success in large part because of the leadership, experience and talent they brought to the table,” says Stephanie Mercado, CAE, NAHQ’s executive director and CEO. “I will be forever grateful for .orgSource’s support of NAHQ as we transitioned to a stand-alone organization Because .orgSource’s help, I was able to keep focus on growing our business at the same time.”