Unions have multiple responsibilities to their members. Among them is running one or more union council elections. These important elections decide matters that affect a large number of members and their daily lives.
What Does a Union Council Do?
The council is the governing board of a union. This board is comprised of elected officials. Large unions may elect representatives locally that serve on a national board.
Union council responsibilities vary depending on their industry and parent union. Generally, however, they are responsible for:
- Establishing policy, management, and organization objectives;
- Managing funds and physical property;
- Negotiating contracts and benefits;
- Approving trustees and committee members;
- Reviewing and addressing reports from the field.
Elected union officers meet with the larger council regularly. The frequency of these meetings, and the term durations members serve, vary. Some unions have strict representational requirements while others remain more fluid.
Online Voting is Superior to Paper Ballot Voting
Council elections occur regularly due to the variety of issues a union membership must address.
Many unions have replaced traditional voting methods with online tools.
There are many generalized benefits to the transition from paper ballot, including:
- superior record management
- more data for analysis
- and verifiable, trustworthy results.
Implementation, from promotion to reporting results, is faster and easier.
There are also election-specific advantages to online voting, too. These advantages are particularly appropriate for large union memberships and those whose membership crosses time zones. These benefits include:
Support for anonymous voting
The Department of Labor mandates that local union officer elections be held by secret ballot. This protects workers from possible intimidation or retaliation based on their vote. These measures should be central to the voting platform selected.
Anonymous voting is one thing that sets eBallot apart from other online voting platforms. Our union-specific software, eBallot UV, supports anonymous voting. This anonymity setting cannot be tinkered with, manipulated, or changed.
Email campaigns to educate and inform
A solid online voting platform should assist with necessary administrative tasks prior to, and following, an election.
Email campaigns are one example. Look for a platform that can automatically send personalized emails to your membership from your uploaded voter list. Set up emails for election promotion and to follow-up with results. Save even more time by saving these templates for reuse later.
Time stamping and receipts
Online voting is a particularly effective way to capture and understand voting habits. Do more of your members vote at a certain time of day? Does voting turnout shift based on other factors? By examining the time a voter casts a vote to evaluating the vote velocity (how fast all members cast their vote) union officers can better serve the needs of the people they represent.
Choose a voting platform like eBallot that includes anonymous votes, write-in candidates, and multiple time-saving template options.
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