Post Menu and Details.
- What is a virtual boardroom?
- Challenges in virtual board meetings and how board portal software help
- Top 5 board portal software in 2022
- Final words
Reading time: ~4 minutes
Globalization and cross-border joint ventures created a need for online board meetings and collaboration. Thanks to board management software, corporations, enterprises, nonprofits, and other organizations can easily and safely conduct board meetings. Board portal software streamlines board meetings and ensures seamless collaboration between board members throughout the year.
The question arises; why choose a board portal for online board meetings when there are free meeting tools? It is true that free software can be used for such purposes, but conducting online board meetings effectively is a great challenge, and today, we are going to highlight those issues and how board software can help with those challenges.
What is a virtual boardroom?
A virtual boardroom or board portal is an online digital platform used by senior company management and board of directors.
Board software facilitates the company board by providing a secure platform for board communications, board document management, and online board meeting management.
Board members can easily prepare, store, and share board material such as board books, meeting minutes and agendas, and other important documents in the boardroom.
Challenges in virtual board meetings and how board portal software help
Difficulty in virtual communications
Conversations during virtual board meetings can be very frustrating. For example, it is very much possible that two meeting members may speak at the same time. In such cases, the conversation usually becomes inaudible. This is not only embarrassing, but it often leads to impeded flow of ideas and contributions in the board meeting.
Board portals can solve these types of problems in different ways. First of all, board software reduces the need for frequent meetings to discuss board issues. Board members can discuss things without even going for an audio or video meeting. Group discussion platforms, sharable annotations, secure chats, and news and announcement panels can solve a lot of problems even without going to board meetings.
The difficulty of keeping everyone engaged during board meetings
The sense of being physically present in a boardroom with other members is a whole different experience. That’s because board members can somehow assess each other’s body language and maybe their thought processes. Failing to do that in a virtual meeting can divert participants’ attention, and they may find it hard to stay on track.
Board software makes it possible for board members to collect feedback, share their opinions or views, and perform their responsibilities even without a meeting. For instance, if the board leadership wants to arrange a meeting just to ask for board members’ opinions or for voting purposes, then it can be done without meetings.
Board leadership can start online polls, and board members can cast votes electronically. They can approve or disapprove a motion, agreement, or contract with the “electronic signature” feature in the board portals.
Lower productivity at meetings
A one-hour virtual meeting and a one-hour physical board meeting are not identical. Although the time span is the same in both cases, things are said differently and in a restricted manner in videoconferencing. Most importantly, it becomes very tough to maintain focus; a slight interruption can break the focus and engagement level of all board members, and reaching a consensus takes longer than expected.
However, with the help of board management software, the board leader and other members can decide what they are going to discuss and what important decisions must be reached in the meeting. When board leadership addresses these issues beforehand, it becomes easier for members to be more precise and keep the meeting short and decision-oriented.
Last-minute changes in meeting agenda
How frustrating would it be for a board member to come to a board meeting without knowing about the changes in the meeting agenda? This can easily happen due to different reasons, such as the board secretary failing to send updated agenda early or even skipping a meeting participant due to any reason.
Board portals make agenda creation and distribution very easy. Virtual boardrooms have agenda builders and free built-in templates. The Board secretary can upload the meeting agenda and tag all the participants or distribute it one by one (via private chats).
Apart from that, any updates, suggestions, annotations, or changes in the meeting agenda will be immediately notified to all members. Meeting participants can also monitor changes and activities on the agenda in real-time. This helps board members prepare better for the meeting and avoid last-minute surprises.
Difficulty in accessing board materials
Board members often face difficulties in accessing board material easily. Board members need board material such as board books, past meeting minutes, meeting agendas, and other corporate documents to execute tasks assigned to them and brief the board about their progress achieved.
Using a board portal means the board members have 24/7/365 access to board material. If the boardroom administration has set access restrictions on specific documents, board members can immediately make access requests and retrieve their desired documents.
Top 5 board portal software in 2022
With the growing demand in different business sectors, the boardroom world has expanded significantly. There are hundreds of vendors in the market, but here are some of the best ones:
- Diligent: A highly recommended board portal software for the financial services industry.
- Boardvantage: Very useful for board collaboration.
- iDeals: Provides the maximum level of data security.
- Boardable: Ensures maximum collaboration and simplifies board meeting minutes preparation.
- BoardPro: Very useful for annotations/comments.
Virtual board portals have made board meeting management more manageable and streamlined. Keeping meeting participants concentrated during board meetings was one of the biggest challenges for board leadership. The virtual boardroom not only ensures maximum participation from board members but provides 24/7 access to board materials. That is why more and more organizations are joining the virtual boardroom world.
Thank you for reading!