An online board voting tool empowers board members to conduct efficient voting via a secure platform. Look for one with these features.
One of the primary functions of the board of directors is to make strategic company decisions on behalf of the shareholders.
These decisions help determine the future and success of a company. Generally, boards come to a consensus on various decisions by conducting board votes.
With so much riding on every board decision, boards need to draft sound board voting procedures. One way they can do this is by incorporating Robert’s Rules of Order in their voting procedures. They can also leverage online board voting tools to streamline the board voting process.
This post shares the three critical attributes to look for in an online board voting tool, and why you should invest in a board portal for effective board meetings and a seamless board voting process.
What is an Online Board Voting Tool?
An online board voting tool is a software/platform that allows board members to conduct votes and elections securely from any location and closely scrutinize the results in real time. As such, an online board voting tool eliminates the need for board members to use a personal email address to cast their votes or to gather in-person to vote manually using paper or any other means. This tool also helps ensure the integrity of the board voting process by preventing board members from voting multiple times.
There are several advantages of using an online board voting software, including:
- Voter accessibility: With this tool, board members don’t need to travel long distances to vote at board meetings. Instead, they only need to tap a link on their device to log into the online board voting platform to cast their votes. The high accessibility of this tool generates greater turnout among your board members.
- Verifiability: An online board voting solution allows you to showcase board election results in real time, eliminating any concerns about the transparency of the vote.
- Faster voting process: Unlike manual board voting where board members need to cast their votes in-person, after which the votes are tallied to determine the outcome, board members only need to click a button to cast their votes. This tool also generates results in real-time.
- Security: An online board voting platform ensures that board members can only vote once. It also keeps every vote anonymous.
- Cost efficiency: An online board voting tool can help reduce voting expenses by streamlining the process.
However, this tool comes with disadvantages. They include:
- Cybersecurity challenges: Threat actors may attempt to breach an online board voting tool to influence the vote. You can prevent this threat by putting in place sound cybersecurity measures.
- High initial cost: While the initial cost of acquiring a web-based board voting software may be an investment, the efficiency of these tools save money in the long run.
As you can see, the benefits outweigh the cons. But to enjoy these benefits, you need to acquire an excellent online board voting solution.
OnBoard board management software helps boards conduct efficient and effective votes. It provides boards with a secure central hub to introduce motions, discuss, and vote for them remotely.
That said, before using board portal software to conduct online board votes or virtual meetings, check whether virtual board and committee meetings are legal in the state in which your organization operates.
Characteristics of an Effective Online Board Voting Tool
Not all online board voting tools offer the necessary features to conduct a smooth board voting process. Carefully review your options when selecting a web-based board voting tool, and ensure they have the following characteristics:
1. Permission Controls
An online board voting tool’s permission controls enhance the security of the board voting process by only allowing access to what’s required for each specific user. For instance, permission controls protect the anonymity of a vote by restricting voting members from seeing real-time tallies or the voting data of other users.
2. Automated Compliance
Online board voting tools need to comply with various regulations related to the voting process, configurations, security measures, accounts, and the company’s industry. Automated compliance is the practice of leveraging technology — such as applications with artificial intelligence (AI) features — to ensure regulatory and industry compliance.
3. Cross-Device Support
An online board voting platform should have cross-device support capabilities. This means it should be accessible across various devices, including smartphones, tablets, and computers, to provide board members with multiple options on how to take part in the voting process.
Does Your Board Need a Board Portal?
Board portals have become an integral tool for ensuring board effectiveness. They provide features for helping board members communicate securely, prepare for board meetings, access information easily, prepare board minutes, conduct seamless board voting, and make sound decisions sooner.
So how do you know whether your board needs a board portal? Here are some telltale signs that you need to invest in board portal software:
- You are taking too much time conducting board voting: A board portal eliminates the time-consuming manual processes, ensuring a faster and more effective board voting process.
- Your meetings are poorly managed: A board portal software can ensure a well-structured board meeting by providing the direction and oversight that board members need to conduct effective meetings.
- You’ve experienced or have concerns about data security breaches: Board portals ensure the security of your meetings by demanding comprehensive security measures, such as data encryption and multi-factor user authentication.
- You’ve been audited or are concerned about record-keeping and discovery costs: With a sophisticated board portal, you’ll never have to worry about regulatory compliance issues with how you share information and keep records.
- You experience a lack of participation during board meetings: Board portals come with a robust library resource that allows board members to easily navigate to key documents. As a result, board members will have access to the information they need to actively engage in discussions.
If you frequently find yourself in any of the above situations, it’s time to invest in board portal software.
Download our free board meeting agenda template to quickly build agendas that include all the necessary components, including space for votes.
About The Author
- Adam Wire is a Content Marketing Manager at OnBoard who joined the company in 2021. A Ball State University graduate, Adam worked in various content marketing roles at Angi, USA Football, and Adult & Child Health following a 12-year career in newspapers. His favorite part of the job is problem-solving and helping teammates achieve their goals. He lives in Indianapolis with his wife and two dogs. He’s an avid sports fan and foodie who also enjoys lawn and yard work and running.
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