I regularly get asked questions about how electronic voting works in comparison to conventional voting processes. People seems to think of it as being at odds with the way they vote now. It's not.....
The top 3 questions
How does your system work with proxies?
We take nominations from the floor at the annual meeting, how will that work with e-voting? **
What about people who don’t have computers?
There will probably come a when all voting is done electronically. At this point in its evolution I personally view e-voting as a necessary addition to the other methods currently employed. In a few years as more of the Facebook generation become homeowners they will expect it. There are enough people who expect it now, across all age groups to make doing it necessary.
Now onto the answers to those questions:
We recommend that you still provide the regular annual meeting notice and accompanying materials, ballot, proxy form, etc. Since a person can vote from anywhere in the world where an internet café is available it is less likely they would need to use a proxy.
As in the first question you will still hold your annual meeting and still take nominations from the floor. **
Not having a computer does not mean you can’t vote online. You can get online from pretty much anywhere in the world; an internet café or the public library as examples AND…. these people should still be given the opportunity to vote using the same methods they have always used.
E-voting is a way to augment the other voting methods you provide now. It will increase your chances of making quorum and is far easier and cheaper to implement than the other methods. Tabulating the results is also much quicker, easier and more accurate than hand counting ballots.
Here’s a real life example of a client whose HOA website we built and maintain. Since we maintain their site we were able to place an announcement on their front page to help outline the voting choices.
Homeowners were given 3 choices for voting:
Vote in person at the meeting
Vote by proxy
Choices 2 & 3 were both linked to the same PDF of the annual meeting notice which included the proxy form, the ballot info, and of course the time and location of the meeting. Choice number 1 for e-voting had 2 parts, one for setting up an account if they didn’t already have one and 2 for voting.
Sound simple? - It is.
Here is a screen capture of the announcement from their home page:
Some homeowners jump at the chance to vote this way right from the start, others take a little time to make up their minds. You can expect more to jump on board with each new election. It's the way of the future.
** Normally rules will be established at a regular meeting and posted in the meeting minutes as well as being sent out in the election notice. Those rules typically include 2 important rules for e-voting 1. All e-votes are final, no mind changes, 2 e-voting is typically cutoff before the meeting (usually a day before) . The results from the e-vote are brought to the meeting to add to the physical vote count and cross checked to make sure no one votes twice.
What our Clients are Saying!
"Anyone, whether a property manager or a volunteer Board member, who has responsibility for running an election, should use VoteHOAnow for a virtually effortless election."
"Our election was a success, with more votes than we've seen in years, and over half of all votes came in via electronic voting."
We really appreciated how flexible and easy to work with VoteHOANow was during the process of getting our community ready to vote electronically for the first time.