Through its ongoing in-house technology development, NCARB has created several proprietary tools to assist in its day-to-day work, including software that helps manage volunteers—now known as Lineup®. Having developed the tool, it was clear that it might be useful to other organizations and businesses. After careful consideration and study, NCARB’s Board of Directors made the decision to invest in making Lineup available commercially by providing subscriptions to this software. Profits from Lineup will be used to create an additional revenue stream to provide services to NCARB’s member licensing boards and customers.
Established in November 2018, Lineup Management Services, LLC, is a for-profit subsidiary of NCARB created for the purpose of marketing and distributing NCARB’s proprietary, volunteer management and team-building software. The product officially launched in March of 2019.
The Lineup tool was developed to help NCARB coordinate and organize its many architect and public member volunteers into diverse, equitable, and effective committees and task forces. Learn more about lineup.
Ownership and Structure
NCARB retains complete ownership of Lineup’s software and licenses the software to the subsidiary for sales and support. No equity in Lineup is distributed to individuals. Through cost-sharing and operating agreements, NCARB established a governance model for the subsidiary that is in line with legal and industry best practices.
Lineup has a five-person board of directors. This board includes two NCARB staff members (CEO Michael Armstrong and Chief Innovation and Information Officer Guillermo Ortiz de Zárate) and an appointee from NCARB’s Board of Directors, Kenneth Van Tine. The other two board members are independent subject matter experts from the technology sector. The makeup of Lineup’s board reflects common practice, given Lineup’s existence as a wholly owned subsidiary of NCARB.
While a portion of Guillermo Ortiz de Zarate’s NCARB salary is attributed to Lineup’s budget to meet accounting requirements, NCARB’s other representatives on the Lineup board do not receive any additional income from NCARB or Lineup as compensation for their Lineup work. No individuals receive any portion of software sales.
How is Lineup involved in the ARE and other NCARB programs?
NCARB uses Lineup software to manage the application and selection of hundreds of architect volunteers. The committees and task forces that oversee the development of the ARE, the AXP, and other programs are assembled using the lineup tool, but that is where the involvement ends. Lineup is NOT involved in the delivery of the exam or any other NCARB programs and has NO income stream related to NCARB’s customers or candidates’ progression toward licensure, either directly or via its clients or partners.
What will NCARB do with the profit from the software sales generated by Lineup?
NCARB will use the return on its investment to sustain NCARB programs and initiatives supporting our Member Boards and our customers. This ensures that NCARB can continue offering the high levels of service expected by our Member Boards and customers. Long term, this will help sustain our momentum even during times of economic downturns without adversely affecting services or requiring fee increases.