A board portal is a powerful way for your organization’s board of directors and administration to reach higher productivity and simpler communication. You can save countless hours of copying and mailing books every quarter, not to mention the headaches of last-minute updates and lost files. By some estimates, some companies spend as much as three quarters of their total office space on file storage alone. When it comes to the most effective board portal solutions, though, digital archiving is just the beginning. Leading edge governance, risk management, and compliance software all have the following 7 key qualities.
- Functions as a Digital Workspace
Directors should have the ability to collaborate on materials through the platform, in between meetings. It doesn’t have to be complicated: for example, users of Aprio Boardroom have access to Adobe’s editing tools to make annotations on documents for later reference.
- Distributes Materials Instantly
Administrators no longer have to worry about couriering costs, or getting last-minute agenda changes to out-of-town directors. Files are shared instantly and automatically – but what’s the difference between a portal that does that and a free file sharing service like Dropbox? Besides security, “white glove” support, and user experience, it’s the administrator’s ability to break members down into groups with different privileges, for example, separating committees from the board at large. CEO evaluations can be hidden from the CEO, and even the head administrator can be excluded from group materials that he or she should not be able to access.
- Works Across Devices and Operating Systems
It seems like everyone has multiple electronic devices these days: work phone, personal phone, work tablet, personal laptop. Instead of forcing directors to get yet another device with a compatible operating system, find board meeting management solutions that work across all major platforms and operating systems, including iOS, Android, and Windows.
- Affordable for Organizations of All Types and Sizes
Affordability does not mean compromising on functionality, user experience, or security. The best value software is within the reach of non-profits, but still competitive in the private and public sectors.
- Unparalleled Support
Your directors can be anywhere in the world at any time, and they certainly don’t keep 9-5 office hours. Your portal should be fully supported, 24/7, every day of the year.
- The Option to Work Offline
This may seem straightforward, but downloading or emailing materials is a major concern when it comes to confidentiality. If your device is lost or stolen, sensitive materials are suddenly available to anyone who access the device. The option to work offline has to remain within the portal, such as the Aprio app, which allows users to work offline without directly downloading any of the material. If a director’s laptop or tablet is lost or stolen, the app’s administrator also has the ability to remotely wipe all of the information on the portal.
- Servers in Your Own Country
If your server is in another country, your information may be subject to that country’s laws. For example, a Canadian Crown corporation with its server in the United States may find its sensitive documents subject to the Patriot Act. Home country hosting means keeping your data in your own country, under laws you know and understand. When you’re choosing board portal vendors, always ask where they host their servers.
Other board meeting software such as Convene have live presentation features with page synchronization making it easy to discuss meeting documents regardless if directors are in the same room or are miles apart.