DIY board portal: what could go wrong? - Aprio
April 23, 2018
Dee Sicklesteel

DIY board portal: what could go wrong?

Our team at Aprio talks to a lot of people about board management software. One question that often comes up is build vs. buy: whether adding onto an in-house system such as Microsoft® SharePoint® can support your board meeting management needs. After all, board materials are content, and content collaboration systems are built for content. Right?

Not really. SharePoint works well for sharing files, especially with internal company employees. The challenge with board material, though, is that directors aren’t company employees and they don’t just expect you to share files. Board members want easy access to agendas, a meeting calendar, contact information and more, and they want to instantly get how the technology works. SharePoint is a solid tool, but with board management, there’s more to consider than what’s easy and already in place.

Three pitfalls of SharePoint for board communication

Directors have trouble using it

Your directors don’t work for your company and use your file system every day. They use it only when they have board work to do – and we hear daily that directors struggle with logging in and finding what they need on systems like SharePoint which are not customized for boards. Entering SharePoint can be like landing in someone else’s file drive. It’s logical to the creator but not an outsider.

Administrators can’t control it

In-house systems are often built and managed by the IT department and they require IT resources to make big changes. The IT group may need to support help questions from directors, add or delete users, address technical questions from administrators and even reconfigure elements of the system. This puts a resource burden on IT and prevents board administrators from being able to quickly and easily do some of this work themselves.

Downloads create a security risk

Directors often need offline access to board material. They need to make notes. They want to find documents easily again when it’s time for a board meeting or committee work. For all of these reasons, directors may download your company material from your SharePoint drive and that leaves company documents unprotected.

The solution: board portal technology

As our Build or Buy? white paper outlines, a board portal can overcome all these disadvantages with a system that’s built for board meeting management. It handles not just content but collaboration, all in a secure environment accessible online or offline, from desktop or mobile. A quick checklist reveals the advantages of Aprio when you compare it to a content management system:

  1. Built for directors – easy for directors to find what they need, when they need it, including the right version of materials, built-in calendars and committees, collaboration tools and an app for mobile use.
  2. Full administrator control – add and delete users, manage versions, distribute polls, without any other IT support required.
  3. Secure communication and document storage – all collaboration and documents, with both online and offline access, occur within the system so your company information stays safe.
  4. Efficient to implement – your IT department has better things to do than support a board portal. Aprio meets their concerns and lets them get on to other things. Any help you need with the portal after it’s launched is done by Aprio.
  5. Future-proof – along with technical support, you’ll benefit from all new software updates, including new features that may be rolled out as a result of input from users. Your system can evolve with your company – with no change requests required!

Want to compare Aprio to your DIY system? Let us give you a tour.

Curious? Find out more.

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