Board administrators are always on the lookout for ways to improve efficiency and communications within their boards, with the ultimate goal of better governance and higher productivity, and experienced administrators know that the work of every board meeting starts long before the members are seated around the table. A productive discussion requires members to digest and understand the information contained in the reports, proposals, and recommendations coming before the board. When the meeting is called to order, those present should have a strong grasp of the agenda and what needs to be accomplished.
In a productive meeting, the focus should be on the problems that need to be solved, which is why it is important that board meetings not get bogged down in the minutiae of reports when more important agenda items are waiting further down the list. Giving members an opportunity to raise questions about minor aspects of the data, or small points of clarification, before the meeting begins is an important part of maximizing efficiency.
But what is the best way to facilitate a discussion between members before the meeting? For the boards of organizations like credit unions, which regularly deal in sensitive information and are already a major target for cybercrime, finding ways to disseminate this information and facilitate discussion beforehand in a way guaranteed to be secure is less straightforward than it might seem.
How can credit union board managers balance the need for instant communications and up-to-the-minute document sharing with their responsibility to keep information as safe as possible? Board portal software is quickly becoming the solution most credit unions rely on, as it brings the ease of digital communication and file sharing tools like email and Dropbox together with the security of couriered documents.
Board managers who discover the latest board portal software technology are realizing the extent to which this software can vastly improve the efficiency of their meetings without running the security risks inherent in many of the usual file sharing options available.
Software options like Aprio, for example, allow administrators the option of sharing documents through a tablet app (also accessible by desktop) that gives users the ability to read and update documents and make annotations and notes that are shareable across platforms and to the rest of the team.
These features not only allow for ease of communication, they also allow board members to access the information they need no matter where they are. Especially in the case of credit unions with board members based in multiple cities in or outside the US, board portal software makes it easy to follow developments and keep track of documents remotely or at home. And because it is digital, there is the potential for significant savings in postage and courier fees.
With the challenges administrators already face in ensuring the board members of their credit union receive the information they need in the fastest and most confidential way possible, perhaps it isn’t surprising that board portal software is becoming an important part of toolkits across the US and around the world.