Solutions and support provided for credit unions leverage virtual and hybrid meetings.
As annual meetings went virtual, there was a correspondingly heightened interest in electronic voting. Among the products that credit unions can use for this purpose is CUES eVote, a highly secure, easy-to-use online electronic voting solution that facilitates hybrid elections with options for paper, phone and online balloting.
“CUES eVote took off during COVID-19 because of the sudden and urgent need for credit unions to hold virtual annual meetings,” says Laura Lynch, products and services manager for CUES. “Associated with that, they were scrambling to find a virtual way to vote as well. Virtual voting makes everything more accessible for members, so they don’t have to be in person at the annual meeting to vote.”
Among eVote’s security components is the use of synchronized vote tallying. “With eVote, we have a verification process in which members enter their username and password, and that ensures one vote per member,” Lynch explains, noting that it also prevents nonmembers from voting. “eVote exists outside of Zoom or other platforms, so if the credit union wants to run voting for a month prior to the annual meeting and also have voting at the annual meeting itself, they can do that. They have a lot of options.”
Thanks to the flexibility of eVote, members can vote at their CU’s annual meeting whether attending virtually or in person. “If they’re sitting in the annual meeting, members could use their own device to go to the website to vote,” Lynch says. “Or they could use an iPad provided to the member by the credit union to facilitate the in-person vote.”
Voting during a virtual annual meeting is likewise easy for members. “They’re already logged into Zoom, so they simply click the link, a new browser window opens, and they can vote,” Lynch says. “So, it works, no matter where you are.”
Credit unions implementing eVote can turn to CUES for support if needed. Lynch and her CUES colleagues will even join a live virtual meeting to answer questions.
“Questions are usually very straightforward, such as ‘How do I log in?’” Lynch says. “It’s not a hard process, but credit unions can run into challenges, which is why we offer live support. Electronic voting can be a time-consuming process for credit union staff, so it’s best to have a third party that can implement it and guide them through the process.” cues icon
Based in Missouri, Diane Franklin is a longtime contributor to Credit Union Management magazine.