It used to be common practice for organizations to have an assembly line of staff printing out paper board packets and delivering them via courier for each board meeting, or to add a bulky PDF on a shared drive. Now, more boards are turning to board management tools to meet the increasing need to communicate more efficiently, securely and with good governance.
What exactly are board management tools? They are specialized digital tools, usually referred to as board management software, that digitize and automate the various aspects of board communications and administration. Board management tools digitize board meeting preparation, document management, distributing board books and updates, coordinating approvals, reporting and more.
Boards that use digital board management tools report time savings in communication and collaboration, and faster decision-making compared to those who rely on bulky pdf creation and hard-to-access shared drives.
What are the benefits of board management tools and the must-have features? Read on to learn more about board management tools or skip ahead to specific sections:
Boards are responsible to fulfill their fiduciary responsibilities and ultimately lead the organization towards sustainable, long-term success. To do this well, boards need to adapt to changing market conditions, make well-informed decisions and foster a positive working relationship among board members.
Relying on manual, paper-based processes or digital tools not purposely built for board management often results in inefficiencies, communication silos and disengaged board members.
Take SharePoint for example. While it offers a robust centralized file storage solution, SharePoint doesn’t help board admins save time on meeting package creation or distribution. A And a common complaint from board directors is that it can be difficult to access SharePoint and find the right file, especially on the go. The lack of ease of use often leads to some board members not coming to a board meeting fully prepared.
As an added bonus, transitioning from paper to digital board operations helps your organization decrease its carbon footprint and support environmental sustainability efforts.
Board management tools help eliminate some of the time consuming manual effort of board administration, allowing administrators to focus on higher-value activities.
Take meeting preparation for example. Aprio’s board management tools automate the process of preparing board meeting agendas and distributing them to board members. Board administrators often remark they save hours, if not days on board meeting preparation using Aprio.
After a board meeting, board administrators can also assign, track, and manage tasks and action items using Aprio. This helps board members stay organized, set deadlines, and monitor progress to ensure timely completion of responsibilities.
Board management tools support good governance practices by ensuring proper documentation, record-keeping and transparency in board processes. Often manually gathering an audit trail of board activities and decisions can also be a headache for board administrators, especially if audited.
Board management tools like Aprio automate the tracking of activities and decisions of your board including voting and document signatures.
By providing a centralized library for all board-related documents including meeting minutes, policies, bylaws, financial reports, and board manuals – board management software equips directors for self-serve, timely board meeting preparation and in-between meeting engagement. Board management tools work best if they are intuitively organized, offer version control and are easily searchable.
While board management tools offer many benefits including security, collaboration and faster-decision making, what features do board members and admins use the most?
Here are some of Aprio’s most-used and valued board management tools:
A good agenda can make or break a board meeting. With Aprio’s Agenda Builder, you can create the meeting agenda you need in minutes and then share it in one click with all board members.
Automatically build an agenda based on your meeting materials by importing folders and documents, or reuse an existing template. Plus add new topics and sub-topics in just a few clicks. Need to keep your meeting on track? Assign a time limit to agenda items.
The work before and after a board meeting is often as important as the meeting itself. Aprio’s Task Manager feature helps board members and admins stay on top of action items. Board members can see a list of all action items they are responsible for and can track their completion in the Aprio dashboard. Board admins can set task priorities and trigger reminder notifications to board members.
While recording and distributing meeting minutes may not be your favorite task, our Minutes Builder helps you get this job done faster than ever.
As soon as you’ve built your agenda, you’re halfway there to the meeting minutes! Use your agenda to get started on recording your minutes and add new sections as needed. Track motions and action items and assign an approver or a coauthor – all in Aprio. Plus, export your minutes as a PDF for easy distribution and add them as a quick link for the next meeting agenda.
Streamline board governance by gathering board signatures and conducting board votes as easily outside of board meetings as meeting live. Sign off on contracts, non-disclosure agreements and resolutions with Aprio’s eSignatures. Use surveys and voting to get the board of directors’ input without the inconvenience or delay of follow-up emails and phone calls.
With remote board meetings the new norm, Aprio ensures it’s easy for board directors to join a virtual meeting without fumbling to find the meeting details or switch to a specific video conferencing solution. Get one-click access to remote meetings right from the dashboard. Plus, use presenter mode to ensure all attendees are following the same agenda.
Unlike email and shared drives, Board management software offers secure remote access, ensuring that board members can access board materials and participate in meetings securely from any location while maintaining device security and preventing data loss. But not all board portals offer the same level of security.
In addition to adhering to independent, third-party requirements for security certification and allowing you to choose where to host your data, the Aprio board portal features provides layers of advanced security including:
Many board management tools offer features to facilitate communication and collaboration among board members. Features like discussion forums, real-time messaging, and virtual meeting capabilities enable board members to exchange ideas, share insights, and make informed decisions.
Voting and surveys can also help board members actively participate, share insights and provide feedback – including board and CEO evaluations – to enhance board transparency and engagement.
With more board members working remotely and using mobile devices, board management tools can provide easy-to-use applications to work from anywhere, at any time. Mobile applications or responsive web interfaces allow board members to access meeting materials, collaborate, and participate in board activities.
Buyer beware, not all board management tools offer the same ability to work from any device. With Aprio, use your desktop, laptop, tablet, or smartphone – whether using Android, Apple or Microsoft.
Board management tools can vary greatly in price from vendor to vendor so it’s important to get customized quotes to compare. Pricing could be a flat rate or be priced per feature or by users. Make sure to ask about both up-front costs as well as ongoing expenses.
Simply book a demo or request a meeting with sales to ask about the specific features and number of licenses you’ll need.
Buyer beware, better meeting management technology and better service can come at a bit higher price. Be sure to consider your goals with the platform, not just grab the best deal.
Looking for pricing information from Aprio? Get a customized quote.
Not all board management tools offer the same caliber of responsive service. Because a board portal is used by some of the most influential and time-starved people in your organization, it is paramount that product support is highly professional and useful.
Often board management software providers offer customer support 24/7 by phone, email or chat. Unlike other board portals, you won’t find automated-chat answers or get pushed to a faq page or hard-to-reach offshore call center with Aprio.
When you call Aprio, you’ll talk with a former board administrator—24/7, 365 days a year.
Aprio offers unmatched expert service from former board administrators who know firsthand the stresses and urgencies of board meeting management and communication. We’re proud of our track record of excellence in customer support and training, achieving a 95% customer loyalty rate.
Aprio’s board management tools are purposely built to streamline board operations and support good governance. We help board administrators and directors save time and resources so they can focus on more important strategic initiatives and value-added activities.
With Aprio, you can:
Why do hundreds of admins and board members love Aprio’s board management portal? Customers tell us they choose us for our advanced security, time-saving tools and exceptional customer support. Aprio stands out against our competitors for providing a user-friendly, secure board portal with unmatched expert service.
If you’re ready to see Aprio’s board management tools in action, we’d love to answer your questions and give you a personalized tour. Start the process by requesting to talk with sales.
One of our product specialists will be in touch to learn more about your business and answer your questions.
We’re happy to help assess your needs and the fit with Aprio. Take the first step.Talk to Sales
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