What is a board portal?
A board portal is software that allows users to upload documents to the cloud server, store, edit, share and review them there completely securely. Also, the board portal app improves teamwork. Every director can not only work with important documents but also communicate with other members of the board. Various organizations use board portal software to manage the intense workflow of their leading boards.
Board portal features and benefits
There are various features implemented in this software. Let’s review some of the most important ones.
- In-app voting and decision making. For example, most board meeting software providers allow their customers to create votings within the virtual boardroom. Using this feature, board directors can make decisions on details and solve some minor issues without holding an offline event.
- In-app commenting and communication. Also, users can leave notes and communicate with other users of board meeting software. These features of corporate meeting software allow creating a steady workflow and communication between directors. Thus, everyone will be aware of what is going on and what actions do other members of the leading board perform.
- Secure space for virtual meetings. Board portals also allow companies to hold paperless board meetings. In fact, directors can even set a convenient date and time for the event to improve attendance.
- Convenient document management. Board rooms provide all the necessary functionality for working with documents before, during, and after virtual meetings. Since all documents are uploaded to the repository in advance and every member of the board can access them, participants can study the information before the meeting. Using their devices, directors can go through documents during the event. Once the meeting is over, all information about it goes to the virtual boardroom’s repository.
- Task and progress management. During and after the meeting, directors can create tasks for themselves, other members or executives. This data allows keeping a better track of the work of the board.
As you can see, board portal software allows you to keep all the essentials in one place: from meetings to decision making and performance tracking – all in a virtual working space.
Meeting management within board software
Arranging meetings online is not only an option but also a necessity these days. For busy members of boards of directors, these meetings should be productive, convenient, and completely confidential. Luckily, you can do all these meeting management functions within a board portal software.
How to create board meeting agenda
For most small businesses, the chairman of the board creates the board meeting agenda. For mid-sized to large businesses, board secretaries are responsible for the preparation of the board meeting agenda, with final approval up to the chairman.
The board meeting agenda typically includes:
- what topics will be discussed
- who will take part
- what is the agenda of the next meeting
An ideal board meeting agenda template covers such board functions as:
- voting and proposing
- discussing KPI and metrics
- revision of previous decisions and their results
- solving of possible problems
- strategies setting
Usually, board meetings are held quarterly, bi-annually, or annually. Sometimes, they are scheduled monthly or biennial. Any of the terms is correct as long as it covers corporate needs.
Board meeting software increases business profits thanks to the following features:
- Analytics tools
- Tasks set via agenda
- Audit possibilities
- Compliance with traditional board meeting standards
- 24/7 technical support
- 2-factor authentication
- Mobile and desktop access
- PDF reports with meeting results
- Standardized templates for meetings
- Meeting process documentation
How to take minutes at a board meeting
A board meeting minutes is a corporate and legal document. It is evidence that the board has made a certain decision at a certain time.
Meeting minutes include:
- a list of the board members present and absent
- steps to take after board meeting
- date and the time of the next meeting
Board meeting minutes help shareholders understand what went through during the decision-making process. The meeting minutes should be clear even for those who’ll read or view the documents years after.
Organize voting using a board portal
Board meeting software is a great option for remote work. You can organize meetings and voting even for people from different countries. Board portals help organize anonymous, fast, and easy voting.
Follow these four steps for painless voting:
- Set the goal and object of the voting.
- Make sure everyone understands the process and has internet connection prior to voting.
- Let people make their choices.
- Get statistics and an error-free result.
Automate board resolutions
The board meeting resolution is drawn at the end of a board meeting.
It’s a document with the final decisions of the company’s directors.
Board resolution templates usually include:
- the date of the meeting
- the name of the company
- a clear context for the decision
- a well-defined prescription
What is the difference between the board minutes and the board resolution?
The board meeting minutes is a document that is related to:
The board meeting resolution is the document describing the actions to be made to solve a problem or reach a goal.
The board software allows simplifying the process of converting words into actions. Use a task manager to set tasks for your team immediately after the end of a paperless meeting.
Let’s wrap it up
Nine tips for a successful and professional board meeting:
- Assign roles before a board meeting.
- Send participants of an upcoming board meeting a PDF template with a schedule to cut the time for unnecessary reporting.
- Check if everybody has an Internet connection during the meeting.
- Allot a specific amount of time for each topic to be discussed.
- Set targets for each topic you have to discuss. Should this inform your team, or vice versa – do you need to enlighten some information?
- Create a space where people can communicate with one another.
- Make sure everybody knows exactly what is going on.
- Add a little description to each decision if possible.
- Sum up everything, and announce the time of the next meeting.
Board Management Software and Its Security
One of the best benefits the board management software provides its users with is the perfect security of the data. Once documents are uploaded to servers of the boardroom software provider, they are highly protected. Let’s observe some security features in the table below:
Why it is important
- 256-bit AES Encryption
The essence of encryption is to convert board software content into ciphers. Decryption without keys is beyond the power of third parties or malicious programs. Before data is sent to AES, a random number generator creates a key. A host does not take part in decryption.
2. ISO Certified Software
ISO-certified virtual boardroom software indicates a vendor that follows the standards of the International Organization for Standardization. The certificate is proving the high quality and commitment of a provider to customers. For both parties, the ability to receive a certificate is guaranteed protection against threats that arise.
3. Multi-factor Authentication
Multi-factor Authentication prevents unauthorized entry into board management software better. A user receives a message with a randomly generated code after entering their password. The risk of third-party interference is significantly reduced.
4. SOC-2 Compliance
SOC-2 indicates the board portal provider adheres to the information security policy. The software that received the auditor’s report meets the current parameters and requirements. SOC-2 differs from others since it implies constant internal security practices.
5. Remote Locking
Remote locking makes it possible to restrict access to files after sending them. In this way, directors control all processes during and after transactions. Usually, the feature is available from any device.
6. 4096-bit RSA Encryption
4096-bit RSA is based on long keys. Once the authentication process is finished, a key is created specifically for the current session. Each of the parties sends parameters, but none of them can have access to the equation.
7. Access Controls
Paperless board meetings can be protected from third-party access with access controls. Directors or administrators track actions after granting permissions for access on the platform. Monitoring is possible from any location and device.
Best board portals offer an e-signature feature for long-distance interactions. Parties do not need to meet to sign the document. In this operation, security mechanisms work to protect confidentiality.
How paperless meetings simplify meeting management
Every company has its own challenges when it comes to the board meeting management. But some companies need to deal with really complex processes. For example, if the corporation consists of several companies and has several boards and a huge number of directors. Or members of the board are located in different countries around the world. In this case, solutions for paperless meetings are helpful.
Usually, businesses have two types of board meetings:
- Monthly. Monthly events are relatively simple – memories about the past event are still fresh and participants are most likely updated on things. Still, records of the last meeting can be useful.
- Yearly. These meetings are more complex. They involve more information, a lot of decisions should be made during the event. Here board management software is vital.
Holding paperless meeting, directors can update each other on processes, keep a track of activities performed in the company and store the information about past meetings to review it again when necessary.
Corporate meeting software advantages
Corporate meeting software pros are evident since the usage’s beginning. Let’s take a closer look at the most remarkable.
Firstly, corporate meeting software is a solution for paperless board meetings. Seriously, who needs tons of printed documents on every meeting just to hear another report or remember what was discussed in the previous meeting. There is no logic here, and it’s time to use software!
Corporate meeting software should be secure for sensitive data. And it is secure! Multi-factor authentications, permission management, and different access levels leave no space for thoughts about any safety problems.
Conducting a meeting was never so simple. Just choose who should be invited. Board portal is synchronized with the calendar, so it’s easy to find a convenient time.
As everyone has all the documents before the meeting started, there is no need to looking for relevant information in printed materials. Nobody wastes time now. Board document management becomes simple. Once board members have a solution, it can be easily transformed into a task with an assigned specialist to work on it. Don’t forget about progress tracking features that increase transparency and efficiency.
Board management software comparison by likelihood to recommend
On the chart above we’ve visualized board management software comparison by likelihood to recommend. The data are from well-known software review websites, plus our evaluation. This chart represents the average estimate. But do not forget that reviews for each provider are written by specialists from different organizations. Each client has their own requirements.
Board management software comparison by likelihood to recommend:
- BoardMaps – 95% of customers will recommend this vendor.
- iDeals – 90%
- Boardvantage – 89%
- Loomio – 87%
- Diligent – 85%
- BoardPaq – 81%
- Convene – 80%
- Nasdaq Directors Desk – 75%
- Aprio – 73%
- OnBoard – 72%
Board management software selection guide
When a specific business understands all the benefits of board software adoption, many new questions can appear. Which provider is the most reliable? How much should we spend on the board software? Which deployment option to choose? Will the provider meet all the requirements? These questions are right. We will try to answer in our short but useful selection guide.
- Define the budget. Each business is unique, has its own needs and possibilities. Board management software is like any service on the market: prices are pretty various. The best board portal software is not always the most expensive.
- Understand what features of the board software are the must. No need to select the most known and reputable provider and pay for the features the business didn’t use.
- Choose a convenient board portal deployment type. The software is available both in cloud-based and on-premise options. Each option has its pros and cons. In a nutshell, cloud-based board portals are more flexible. It’s easy for the client to increase or decrease the number of features of a cloud-based solution. On-premise board portal could be a more expensive option at the beginning. Plus, system maintenance and possible customization require extra spend.
- Read as many board portal reviews as you can. You can find many valuable insights about board software providers while reading reviews.
- Use free trial option. You will hardly find the provider that won’t offer a 30-day free trial option. Even more, since the beginning of the pandemic, some board software can extend their free trial.
- Compare several best board portal software options before choosing the most convenient provider.