Amanda Whiting runs a mentoring program at ALPSP (Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers), the international trade association supporting not-for-profit organisations that publish scholarly and professional content.
Working to cultivate a culture that will strengthen and advance academic and scholarly communications in all its forms, its long-standing mentorship program connects and supports publishing industry colleagues early on in their career with a wider network of expertise and skills to help foster development and progression.
Scaling and streamlining systems behind the scenes
Up until now, the program has been run completely manually by the team at ALPSP. With a growing number of almost 300 member organisations across 30 countries, the team felt that they did not have the resources, systems or scalability to provide the best mentoring experience for its members and keep pace with growing membership numbers.
In an effort to reduce the time to match and help its members get more from the program more quickly, ALPSP used Mentorloop’s onboarding and matching tools, including Smart match to streamline registration and find the best possible matches for the most number of people.
Previously spending weeks matching mentors and mentees to ensure high quality matches for participants, this meant they were able to overcome the concern around understandably long wait times between registration and matching.
- Reduced time-to-match from weeks to minutes
- Successfully matched 190 participants using a blend of self match and smart match, achieving a 93% match rate in February 2023
- Mentoring Quality Score: 4.78/5 in March 2023
Better infrastructure for a bigger impact
Furthermore, ALPSP identified an opportunity to increase member engagement, retention, and growth. By upgrading the program’s infrastructure, ALPSP members benefitted from a more user-friendly, intuitive experience which enabled them to start meeting with their mentors/mentees straight away once matched, getting even more value from their membership with ALPSP, and ultimately progressing in their careers.
Moving away from manual feedback meetings towards automatic feedback surveys with Mentorloop has also given Amanda real-time visibility into how participants are getting on in order to support them effectively and further enhance their experience.
Since launching in early 2023, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive:
I am extremely satisfied with the progress I've made with [My mentor] so far. We have been sharing experiences and talking about difficult situations as well as preparing me for my future career steps.
It's been great working with [My mentor] so far... The resources around creating goals and things to consider for the first meeting on Mentorloop have been really useful, especially for someone like me, who is new to the Mentorship scheme.
[My mentee’s] interests and goals are very well matched with my skills and experience to coach and guide her. We've connected well personally and enjoyed our discussions so far.
- [My mentor] is very friendly and easy to get on with. She’s understanding and listens without judgement to what I need, before giving tailored advice. She has added structure to our sessions to help guide me through different topics. I’m excited about what I’ll learn from her through this mentorship scheme.
In addition, the program has enjoyed:
- 71 mentors with over 10 years of experience
- 81 goals set
- Representation from over 60 membership organisations
Plans for the Future of ALPSP Mentoring
Enabling a vibrant network of individuals and organisations, ALPSP’s mission is to be relevant, resonant and accessible for everyone involved in the publishing and communication of scholarly research and information, helping them thrive during difficult times.
With the ALPSP International Mentorship Scheme more dynamic than ever, the impressive results of the program thus far have encouraged the Program Coordinators to explore new ways of making an impact on even more people.
In 2023, has announced that it is offering free membership to Ukrainian-based scholarly publishers to provide support during very difficult times across the country.