Corporate governance has evolved a great deal in the last fifteen years. Directors are required to be far better educated in their company’s strategy and more independent from executives than in the past. They have to be free to express criticism, but also capable of resolving issues. A chair’s most important responsibilities include a focus on leadership, as well as:
- The orientation of new members and continuing education
- Recruiting new directors
- Building a dialogue and resolving disagreements between members
- Gearing the dialogue toward decision making
They should not be wasting their valuable energy overseeing logistics tasks. You should consider upgrading to a board portal software if your administrator struggles with:
- Finding out where to send books before meetings, whether that’s a director’s new office or a hotel in another city
- Racing to get updated reports copied and couriered before a plane leaves
- Checking and double checking which reports should be seen by whom
- Fulfilling individual requests for additional information and attempting to equitably distribute all information
- Keeping tabs on whether or not members are fulfilling their continuing education requirements
If your organization has difficulty with logistics issues, or if you’ve realized that your paper and courier costs are an unnecessary burden, the newest board meeting management software can deliver efficient information distribution to your organization. By taking advantage of a board portal, your organization can save thousands of dollars of copying and couriering costs, not to mention hours of wasted time and frustration. As any director who has ever flown to a meeting can attest, an easy-to-use electronic board book would be a blessing. Rather than cramming hundreds of pages of reports into their carry on bags, the majority of directors would prefer to access everything via laptop or tablet. A portal that allows users to work offline (i.e., while they’re in transit) is another must-have feature.
One of the leading reasons organizations are reluctant to take the jump into a paperless alternative is older members who are reluctant to change. One board portal, Aprio, uses “white-glove,” 24/7/365 support to help overcome this resistance to the digital transition. By offering round-the-clock support for directors at any hour in any time zone, they can rest assured that they are always using the platform securely. Portals offered by companies like Aprio allow users to do everything from directly annotate documents (privately or to share with their colleagues), sign documents electronically, and vote on resolutions in between meetings. Because of the sensitive nature of so much of this work, they offer comprehensive support, in addition to one-on-one training sessions to make sure that all users are comfortable with the technology.
When you decide that your organization needs to save time and money when you distribute your financial reports, look into companies that will take your organization’s commitment to security and concerns over new technologies to heart. Tech-skeptics need to be brought onboard in order for them to receive up-to-date information and for the organization to reap all the benefits of going digital. Make sure you partner with a technology company that understands how to encourage buy-in from all of your directors.