That’s it. You’ve had it. You’ve officially decided that you are done standing at the copy machine, collating hundreds of pages of documents, chasing down board members for agenda items, and reminding staff members for the hundredth time where they can find minutes from the last meeting. You. Are. Done. Done with paper, done with printouts, and done with manual everything.
The first step to streamlining your agenda and meeting management process is realizing that it’s time for automation. A valuable agenda and meeting management software solution should automate the most time consuming elements of your workflows, enable team collaboration, allow for secure, yet easy access to associated files, and incorporate dynamic content such as live and recorded video. And that’s only the beginning of what you can expect to gain from a valuable solution. With so much potential for time-saving automation in front of you, don’t let the process of choosing a solution partner overwhelm you.
Features Every Clerk Needs in Agenda and Meeting Management Software
1. Configuration Capabilities. Choose a solution that can be configured to fit the process needs and unique approval processes of your local government. Configurable features should include custom designs and templates, wording, numbering, and ordering.
2. Create Tasks and Deadlines for Board Members. Any software you choose should automate the agenda creation process and ensure you receive agenda items in advance of the meeting. A valuable system will automate and streamline the routing of email notifications to internal staff members who are required to approve agenda items, and manage backup approvers.
3. An Incorporated Public Portal. Save time in your day and reduce the number of questions you receive from citizens looking for content by choosing a solution that offers a public portal for storing and sharing documents and files that matches your website for a consistent user experience.
4. Complete Security and Access Oversight. Ensure you can customize your content’s security based on staff member access rights. As an administrator, you should be able to set access levels for individual users and control who can access specific content. Customized access should pertain to file attachments as well for those documents not intended for mass consumption.
5. Support for Multiple File Types. To maximize the use of your software, choose a solution that supports the use of PDFs, images, and Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files and integrates with Google Docs and Microsoft OneDrive so you can easily import documents into the file-sharing systems you already use today.
6. Integrated Bookmarks. If your agendas and supporting documents are often hundreds of pages long, and sometimes need to be versioned based on the inclusion of confidential information, ensure you can easily customize agenda packet versions and include bookmarks and links for easy reference.
7. Device-Agnostic Access. Your board members will want the freedom and flexibility to access meeting content at any time from any device. Make sure your solution is mobile accessible, and that you can distribute agenda packets via paper, email, Dropbox, download, or board portal.
8. Built-In File Search. You likely already have hundreds of agendas and meeting minutes you would want to store in your automated system—and that’s just the beginning. Make sure you choose a system that is easily searchable to make it easy for you, board members, and citizens to find documents (including attachments) that address specific topics or that were published in a given month or year.
9. Insightful Analytics. A system that offers reporting insights will help you better understand what information your citizens want and need from their local leaders.
10. Interactive Board Portal. Enable board member remote access to live meetings. While you’re running meetings from one location, board members can view the proceedings live, and vote electronically from any device. Aggregated voting results should be viewable to all live and remote participants including citizen attendees for greatest convenience and transparency.
11. Automated Recordings of Roll Calls, Motions, and Votes. By automating the capture of all meeting actions, you reduce duplicative processes and free up your time and attention during meeting proceedings.
12. Speaker Management. To help you keep your meetings running on schedule, choose a solution with an integrated speaker and countdown timer.
13.Live Streaming and On-Demand Video. Live and recorded video increases citizen engagement and participation. Choose a system that allows for the integration of live streaming of meeting proceedings and allows for video segment bookmarking for viewer convenience.
14. Social Integration. Social media offers a vital platform for amplifying the reach of your decisions and initiatives. Choose a solution that allows citizens to subscribe to receive updates and that allows you to easily share updated agendas, meeting minutes, and videos via social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
15. Interactive Packet Review. Help board members immerse themselves in all the information needed to be informed on critical topics. Ensure you can document, save, and refer to key discussions and action items through integrated notes and comment functionality, as well as save private notes, or provide additional feedback via email to stimulate further discussion and keep initiatives moving forward.
If these time-saving features have you feeling excited for once, rather than overwhelmed, click below to view a demonstration of our CivicClerk® agenda and meeting management software, a powerful component of the CivicPlus® Platform.