Online Voting with SiteCM
A union local approached us looking for a solution to their manual mail-in voting process. They wanted a solution that was easy to set up, easy to manage, easy to count, easy to verify, and easy to reset for the next election while saving the data from each election. They were struggling with the cost and time of a manual process.
Each year the executive needs to reach out to their membership to conduct an election for their executive. Sometimes just a few seats to fill, sometimes a whole new slate. Their manual process required getting the ballots to the membership by mail and then collecting and counting them. This process took many hours over the course of a couple of months by a half dozen staff.
Another challenge is that members have different job titles at the time of an election call and depending on their job title at the call of the election they could receive one of two ballots. In other words, not all members had the same ballot.
We presented a solution that starts with SiteCM CMS as the foundation. We added the Membership component and the Feedback Form. While a single ballot solution can be “out of the box” with SiteCM a few hours of custom programming gave them a solution that presented one of two ballots depending on each member’s role.
When an election is called, members are directed to login and update their role by a specific date. On that date the site administrator locks down this information so each member receives the correct ballot.
Meanwhile the site administrator has set up the two ballot pages.
When the election starts members log in, click on Ballot, make their selection and hit submit. Each member can only vote once. If they click on Ballot after they have placed their vote they will see the “Thank you, you have already voted” page.
Accessing the election results
When the election is closed the web site administrator logs in and downloads the results to a spreadsheet for counting and verification. This data is now stored at the client’s location. When the election is over the site administrator follows the steps to clear the data of the current election, and resets members’ election privilege so they can vote at the next election. The ballot pages are now ready to be edited to show the new slate when ready.
The membership section is also used throughout the year to disseminate all kinds of other member-only information that used to be sent by email and various other methods.
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