The SIOP Executive Board announces two Bylaws amendments for a member vote. The changes align with SIOP’s Strategic Goals to improve the visible and invisible diversity of our membership and encourage more demographic and experiential diversity within our profession as well as to reduce our fiscal dependence on in-person events by diversifying our revenue streams to ensure the society’s long-term financial health.
1. Affiliate Category Amendment – creates the Affiliate Membership Category which shall be open to applicants with an interest in the purpose of the Society.
a. Society Affiliates may not vote or hold office in the Society but are entitled to a subset of benefits.
2. Student Affiliate Amendment – renames the Student Affiliate category to “Student” and expands the student membership criteria to post-secondary students with an interest in the purpose of the Society as stated in Article I, Section 2. Society Student status may also be granted to individuals who have graduated within the past 12 months and may not yet be eligible for a professional membership status.
Voting on the proposed Bylaws changes begins on May 9, 2022 and concludes on June 8, 2022. All SIOP Members and Fellows are hereby requested, in accordance with SIOP Bylaws Article IX, to review and vote on the amendments by electronic ballot when the voting period opens.
The ballot is structured as separate votes for each of the amendments, so that the passing of one is not dependent upon the passing of the other. The amendments receiving majority affirmative votes by those casting ballots will go into effect immediately upon the closing of the ballot period.
If you have questions about the proposed changes, please email Executive Director Tracy Vanneman at email@example.com.
View the current version of the SIOP Bylaws here and a marked up version showing all amendment edits up for consideration here.
CAST YOUR VOTE NOW
Leading up to the Bylaws vote, the Administrative Office has received questions surrounding these proposed amendments, which we wanted to address. The below Frequently Asked Questions are aimed to provide additional context for voters:
Affiliate Bylaws Change
1. What led to the need for the Affiliate member type proposal?
For many years, the Administrative Office and Membership Committee have received feedback indicating that those in fields related to I-O have a desire to benefit from I-O research, but due to SIOP’s membership criteria, they are ineligible to join as any type of member. The current investigation into determining if there was a need for a new type of membership was requested in early 2021, by then President-Elect Steven Rogelberg, in support of SIOP’s strategic goals:
2.3 Improve the visible and invisible diversity of our membership and encourage more diversity within our profession.
2.5 Reduce our fiscal dependence on in-person events by diversifying our revenue streams to ensure the society’s long-term financial health
3.4 Share best practices and exchange knowledge related to understanding and improving work and workplace issues by encouraging and empowering cross-industry and cross-functional conversations.
2. Is there a group that wants access to SIOP member-only material that currently does not have access?
In doing the research to understand if there was a need to propose a new membership type, surveys and focus groups were held with those who lack I-O and related degrees but do similar work. Per the current membership criteria, there is not a way for these professionals to be included in our society, yet these professionals want access to research and best practices to apply in the workplace.
3. How many people do we think might be interested in the Affiliate member type?
While the true total addressable market of the Affiliate member type is unknown, since anyone can join, the survey included as part of the research in support of this proposal was administered to anyone that had engaged with the SIOP office in the past but was not a member (n = 4552). Of those who responded to the survey (n = 340), 81% are interested in or have tried to become a member, and 47% have utilized SIOP resources or attended a conference. Additionally, 80% of individuals surveyed who never attended a conference or utilized SIOP materials are interested in or have tried becoming members of SIOP.
4. What are the criteria for admission for an Affiliate?
No criteria except an interest in learning more about our field. This is similar to other professional associations that offer affiliate type access for anyone with interest in the profession, reserving higher levels of membership for those who meet additional criteria.
5. Are there different benefits for an Affiliate as compared to the Associate or Member benefits?
Yes, an Affiliate would have different benefits. Affiliates would not be able to vote, serve on committees, submit sessions for conferences, nominate for Awards or Fellows, or hold leadership roles within SIOP. While they would receive a discount to the conference registration rate, it would be smaller compared to other membership types.
6. Doesn't SIOP already have the types of members we want?
We intend to continue recruiting and retaining people with I-O and related degrees who are eligible for Member or Associate status. The intent of the addition of the Affiliate member type is to allow those who do not now (and most likely will never) have an I-O degree to have access to the science they are already practicing to encourage them to gain professional development knowledge and experiences and access to the I-O community.
7. What is the invisible diversity of our membership?
Invisible diversity refers to any demographic diversity that is not visible (in the way that sometimes age, race, and gender are more visible), such as socioeconomic status, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, political beliefs, as well as practice area, academic or practitioner roles, and highest degree earned. Each of these categorizations of I-Os brings a unique perspective and ensuring we include a balance of as many of them as possible will help further the invisible diversity within our society. While SIOP does not have a practice of collecting all of these specific demographics today, there have been recommendations put forth by the IRC that includes some of these. For information about SIOP's known invisible diversity, visit the Membership Demographics Dashboard.
Student Bylaw Change
1. Can you explain the meaning of postsecondary and why that language was chosen for this change?
This change in language is proposed to be more inclusive. Recognizing that “graduate or undergraduate” may not reflect all educational paths within the US or around the world, the Executive Board supported the recommendation to instead replace it with “postsecondary”, which captures community colleges as well as those in other countries where education and training systems have different names.
2. Why is there a need to offer an extension of the Student Affiliate membership for 1 year beyond graduation?
This extension is proposed in acknowledgement that not everyone steps into a paid I-O role immediately upon graduation. Additionally, by offering the Student Affiliate membership for 1 year after graduation, SIOP is allowing more time for the applicant to meet the criteria of the professional membership, specifically “Be engaged in professional or graduate work related to the purpose of the Society, as stated in Article I, Section 2 of the Society’s Bylaws.”