February 26, 2019

Building Board Alignment with Credit Union Board Portals

The goal of any board of directors is to improve efficiency, communication, and higher productivity. Good governance starts with this trifecta of ideas and board administrators are always searching for new ways to harness an innovative approach to further feed the flame. Board administrators also know that board meetings begin weeks before directors take their seats in the boardroom. Credit unions, in particular, have varying corporate governance concerns than other companies. Because of their non-profit status, the host of unique pain points requires board administrators to seek solutions tailored towards their board’s specific needs. Recently, board administrators have turned to credit union board portals to better leverage technology for more effective governance, collaboration, and security.

Bridging the Divide

Credit unions categorically differ from banks in the major fact that they are non-profit financial institutions. In this way, they also have very different corporate governance needs. Credit union boards are rarely paid for their oversight making them a large volunteer base. However, some states are moving toward allowing paid boards for credit unions.

This allowance and the need for volunteer board members have created a disconnect amongst credit union boards. “A recent study from the Credit Union Executives Society raises big questions about credit union governance models that cast doubt on how well the movement’s paid and volunteer leadership work together,” reports Credit Union Journal. The 2018 study found that supervisory committees, executives, and boards were in alignment only 16% of the time when it came to mission and strategy, board structure and composition, and fiduciary oversight. However, board administrators are bridging this divide with the implementation of credit union board portals.

Modern and Sophisticated Technology

modern-boardroom-technologyCredit union board portals are architected with specific solutions in place that target and diminish the pain points of these non-profit boards. One of those crucial points of stress is the ability to stay informed and engaged with board business in between meetings. Board books are often hundreds of pages in length, which extends preparation time and costs for both board members and administrators. The ability to leverage credit union board portals to foster a paperless boardroom initiative is critical to the efficiency of a board made up of members from different cities and states. Board administrators can make electronic board books with intuitive drag-and-drop technology.

Modern credit union board portals have full-featured applications for web and mobile devices so board members can access board documents on their preferred device including electronic board books. This functionality also fosters collaboration between all branches of credit union boards. “I think credit union boards are having to ensure that their makeup is moving along with the sophistication of the competitive environment,” says Christopher Stevenson, SVP and chief learning officer at CUES. One way that boards can continue to thrive in the financial institution market is by implementing a collaborative solution offered by credit union board portals.

Connecting Board Branches with Credit Union Board Portals

One pain point often felt by credit union boards is the disconnect between paid executives, volunteer board members, and the committees that help the institutions function properly. In addition to electronic board books and paperless board materials, credit union board portals also offer a host of secure collaboration options that replace cumbersome email threads often subject to cybersecurity threats. Govenda, a platform built to streamline credit union boards, offers a secure collaboration alternative for optimal communication outside of the boardroom. Users can easily annotate documents with or without internet connections to highlight key points, concerns, or clarification needs.

Stakeholders can then use Govenda Discussions to collaborate on documents and agenda items outside of the boardroom. Discussions are critical for seamless communication and directly contribute to the success of credit union corporate governance. Credit union board portals that are integrated with elements like Discussions allow the board to provide more valuable guidance and stay engaged in between board and committee meetings.

Security Measures Architected for Credit Unions

security-softwareSecurity is also a major pain point for credit union boards. Financial institutions interact with sensitive information on a daily basis, which makes them targets of cybercrime. Finding a solution to securely distribute and collaborate on materials prior to board meetings is not always easy. However, credit union board portals have found a way to keep information safe while boosting productivity on the go.

Credit union board portals include security in every layer of their infrastructure. Some key security elements to highlight are 2-factor authentication and remote wiping technology. With the rise of mobile devices used to access credit union board portals, 2-factor authentication is a critical component to a board cybersecurity plan. This feature requires two different sets of login credentials to be used when signing into a board portal. This makes it harder for sensitive information to fall into the wrong hands. Also, if a device is lost, stolen, or compromised, remote wiping is also available. Remote wiping capabilities allow for all mobile credit union board portals to be wiped clean of any sensitive data by an administrator with the tap of a finger.

Credit union board portal software is the best solution for credit unions and financial institutions alike. Intuitive applications, like Govenda, make file sharing, collaboration, and security seamless and effortless. Credit union board portals are also functioning as solutions of engagement by connecting all stakeholders on credit union boards including paid members, volunteer, and executive branches.

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