In the past board members had to travel to meetings in person to cast their votes. With the advancement of technology like video conferencing as well as online voting platforms, it’s now possible for board members to cast their votes remotely. The process is significantly faster and more efficient, which means better productivity and more effective decision-making for the organization.
When setting up remote voting on your board, there are a number of important things to take into account. First, you must decide on the voting method. Most organizations have a nomination process before the election. Candidates can either volunteer to run, or be able to get in by collecting signatures, or be nominated by fellow members. A robust nomination process can increase enthusiasm in the beginning and attract a higher number of qualified candidates. This will ensure that the organization is represented by the best possible representation in its leadership.
Email voting has a number of issues, among them the fact that the results are not impervious to manipulation and are not recorded in real time. Furthermore, if an executive director responds to an email ballot using an answer that is different from the rest of their peers this can make it difficult to determine which answers are valid. The voting via email can also be problematic because it isn’t completely confidential. This can be problematic when you are voting on sensitive and confidential issues.
While some states and bylaws do not permit voting via email, most nonprofit boards are legally able to take action outside of a meeting as long as all the directors can hear each other and respond in real-time and they also record an unanimous written consent signed by each of them.