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Amber Stark

SIOP President Shares a “State of SIOP” Update

To my friends and colleagues in the SIOP community,

As SIOP president, I have two important messages to share with you:

  1. THANK YOU!
  2. We are MOVING FORWARD, together!

First, I’d like to THANK YOU for staying engaged in the SIOP membership community, volunteering on committees and task forces, submitting research and presentations to the 2021 Annual Conference, donating to the Anti-Racism Grant and other SIOP Foundation funds, and amplifying SIOP messaging by sharing our social media posts with your networks. Whatever role you are playing to support SIOP – and, in turn, your own career and the wider I-O profession – during this unprecedented year, THANK YOU!

Second, in keeping with my presidential theme, rest assured that SIOP is MOVING FORWARD! After nearly a year in the making, the Executive Board approved an ambitious new 3-year strategic plan to guide SIOP’s future. We are resolved to do new and better things for all our members and those who know the importance of I-O psychology to work and workers.

We are preparing our first-ever hybrid SIOP Annual Conference for April 2021, and we just launched our SIOP Virtual Workshop Series in September to ensure valuable, rigorous I-O programming continues to be available to our member community. We are planning new revenue streams for 2021 while remaining ever mindful of cost containment.

Although our 2020 SIOP Virtual Conference in June was a major success in so many ways, our registration and sponsorship revenues were far lower than in prior years. The Annual Conference is the driving force of SIOP’s budget, and so the Executive Board and staff have engaged in a series of conversations and exercises to address the financial uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whereas SIOP normally operates on a breakeven or better budget, this year we anticipate a deficit of more than $1 million. This is due to a confluence of factors: (a) fewer anticipated dues renewals due to market uncertainty, (b) decreased conference registrations and corporate sponsorships given budget cuts, (c) new and unusual expenses for additional A/V and hotel needs, (d) the absence of a 2020 Leading Edge Consortium, and (e) lower use of the I-O Job Network. Solid planning over the years has provided investment reserves to support SIOP through difficult financial times, but these resources are limited and subject to market fluctuations. We are likely to start drawing from these reserves for operational use in early to mid-2021, but we prefer to use these reserves for investments in new strategic projects and growth opportunities.

The SIOP Executive Board is focused on preserving SIOP’s organizational health while delivering valuable member experiences and benefits to our loyal and supportive member community. We will continue to need your help to do so.

None of us know what the future holds, but I am thankful for the depth of commitment that SIOP members have shown again and again in service to their I-O friends and colleagues. I’m confident that we are moving forward toward a brighter future as we continue to use our science for a smarter workplace.

If you have a question about SIOP’s present or future, or a comment to share for the Executive Board’s consideration, please share that with us by emailing Executive Director Tracy Vanneman at tvanneman@siop.org.

Wishing you good health and well-being in these challenging times,
Georgia T. Chao
SIOP President

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