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5 Things You Need to Know about Board Portals

     


By Mark Anderson, CEO/CFO   |   Posted January 1, 2018

It’s widely known that a board portal can provide convenient access to board materials, corporate data and other important information. But a board portal can also enhance your entire organization in a number of other ways. Here are five things you should know about how a board portal can benefit everyone from directors and committee members to board secretaries, senior management and other users:

  • #1: Offers Secure, Online Access
    A board portal can give directors easy, electronic access to meeting materials, information about their organization and other important documents. And that’s a major benefit because most directors have busy schedules, and they’re based in different geographical locations. With a board portal, they can view the agenda, corporate policies and procedures, company news and other information—anywhere and anytime. Plus, they don’t have to hassle with a bulky printed board packet, which could get lost or stolen.

    Besides having convenient online access to board packets and other documents, a board portal creates a secure digital environment for organizing, storing and distributing information. It uses a number of security measures and procedures designed to protect an organization’s information. As a first line of defense, directors must enter a password to access system. And once they’re inside the board portal, they’re accountable for any information they view and modify. Because every document inside the portal is version-controlled, it’s clear who is accessing and altering data in the system. Ultimately, this helps to maintain the integrity of the information within the board portal. Then encryption helps to protect information while it’s being transmitted outside the system.
  • #2: Saves Paper, Money and Time
    This may be obvious, but a paperless board portal saves trees, and that’s great for the environment. And having electronic board materials means avoiding all the paper, printing and other costs involved with creating traditional board packets. Plus, a board portal saves a significant amount of time for board secretaries who no longer have to create, print, compile and mail out stacks of meeting materials. They can produce a digital board packet in hours instead of days—and they can update the information quickly and easily.
  • #3: Boosts Efficiency
    Everyone wants to increase efficiency, and a portal can easily make this possible. In fact, it can help increase productivity in a variety of ways. First, directors can use an iPad app to view board-related information while they’re on the go. And the digital nature of a board portal means they can be sure they’re looking at the latest version of the information they’re accessing. Having all the information at their fingertips makes it easier for directors to fulfill their governance duties.

    Plus, a board portal also has built-in features that can facilitate various tasks and save time. For example, directors can add highlighting and notes to documents so they are easier to review. They can also vote on credits and other items between meetings. The system will automatically record each vote for future reference, which avoids the need to poll members and manually record their votes. A board portal also allows board and committee members to electronically accept policies and procedures—including new changes. Directors can also complete online evaluations, which can be helpful to the board and entire organization. 
  • #4: Facilitates Regulatory Compliance
    Regulatory compliance is a key issue for organizations of all types and sizes. And a board portal can facilitate this process. It creates a virtual setting that centralizes information and documentation in an audit-ready format. Essentially, a board portal monitors information as it goes through the system, and it generates a historical archive. This creates a permanent record of board materials and other files, which means inspectors can get immediate access to the type of data they need. Ultimately, this can simplify regulatory compliance and audits.
  • #5: Enhances Board Governance
    Governance—the rules or processes by which organizations are controlled—is central to the role of a corporate board. A board portal can enhance a board of director’s ability to provide governance for an organization by enhancing access to information, communication and collaboration.

    For instance, a board portal provides access to information directors need before, during and after meetings so they can better perform their board governance duties. This can help directors be better prepared for meetings, decision making and other responsibilities relating to board governance. But board governance goes beyond making decisions and managing processes. It also requires exercising a level of accountability, transparency and due diligence that supports the ongoing success of an organization. A board portal represents an all-inclusive platform for managing board and committee meetings, decision making and other activities related to board governance.

These are just five key factors I felt you should know about a board portal, its impact on regulatory compliance and board governance. If you don’t already have a board portal, get one and see how it can benefit your organization.

 

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