Does your HOA struggle with resident involvement in HOA elections and other various meetings and votes? A new method of voting is on the rise throughout the country, and it may just be the answer to your board’s struggle. Two words: electronic voting.
Why Electronic Voting Works
Involvement and interaction with homeowners are the two most crucial aspects contributing to the success of your HOA. Electronic voting is on the rise throughout the country because it is convenient. It presents a method in which to help an HOA meet quorum, as well as to aid in the struggle with regular member attendance at board meetings. Electronic voting makes it possible for homeowners to vote from the comfort of their own homes, from the road, from the office, or wherever else they may be. Electronic voting greatly increases the probability of resident participation. Quantity of votes not only affects budget and updates to the association and community, but amendment of the governing documents, as well. Increased accessibility results in more votes, which in turn results in a more productive community. This cycle will continue, and as residents see change ensuing from their votes, they will be increasingly involved.
Benefits of Electronic Voting
- Electronic voting is automated, precise, and eliminates the possibility of human error in tallying and recording. By eliminating the human aspect, the process of electronic voting greatly decreases the resources and time the board has to employ. Electronic voting can also produce segmented reports to mine helpful data that the board can use in making decisions further down the road.
- Electronic voting reduces paper waste and cuts costs. More specifically, it cuts costs associated with printing and postage, as well as a reduction in the human effort spent collecting, tallying, and recording votes. Companies can facilitate electronic voting for as little as $500 to $1,000 dollars. One challenge is that you still have to make paper ballots available to those who wish to opt of out electronic voting, and some communities may have a handful of people who do. Thus, it should be noted that you don’t eliminate the expense or hassle of paper voting altogether.
Addressing Privacy Concerns
Some residents may express concerns about the security of their personal information when it comes to the use of electronic ballots. Luckily, the majority of security concerns have been eliminated with the technological advancements of the last few years. The HOA board and/or the management company should be prepared to give homeowners plenty of information about what is involved in the process and how their privacy and security will be protected. Your HOA management company will be invaluable as they help you plan for and execute the roll out of electronic voting, ensuring that everyone is involved and informed.
Electronic voting is really something worth considering if your state allows it. Some states still have outdated laws requiring paper ballots; however, the laws are changing. More than 20 states currently allow electronic voting, and others are sure to follow when they see the many resulting benefits.