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How Technology Helps Nonprofits Succeed

10 valuable BoardEffect features you should be using


BoardEffect is designed to make work easier and faster for volunteer boards and administrators. We’re constantly adding and enhancing capabilities, so we want to make sure that all our users are making the most of key BoardEffect features that can help you save time, streamline board processes, improve communication and promote accountability – to help your board be even more effective this year.

Are you using these 10 key features?

1.  Save more time with the on-the-go BoardEffect app

Make your boardroom truly paperless by encouraging your board members to download the free BoardEffect app. It’ll help save them time and enable them to do their board business on any device, any time, anywhere. With the BoardEffect app, your board members can:

  • View the meeting book online or download for offline review
  • RSVP to meeting invitations
  • Add private or shared annotations to meeting materials including “sticky notes,” drawing, highlighting, underlining and strike-through
  • Print or email their meeting packets from the App (optional)
  • Access collaborative tools such as voting, surveys, tasks, schedulers and discussions
  • View the full contact directory, which includes members’ head shots, biographies, and contact details
  • View files from your BoardEffect Resource Library (iPad only)
  • Download and annotate your Board Handbook, including bylaws, policies, and other documents

How to get it: You can download the free BoardEffect app for iOS here and Android here.

Pro tip: From most screens on the app, users can tap the Menu icon in the upper-left corner to display a Navigation Menu that will also allow for navigation to Workrooms and Libraries.

2. Dynamic meeting book management

Administrative staff responsible for building meeting books and agendas can say goodbye to manual hassles and focus on efficient meeting preparation with dynamic meeting book management. With this feature, you can:

  • Create a digital meeting book, easily add documents, drag and drop agenda items, and generate customizable cover and agenda pages
  • Use the Microsoft 365 integration to easily add, edit and collaborate on documents within BoardEffect
  • Automatically convert all files to PDF
  • Set advanced settings such as formatting options, controlling who has access, adding watermarks, and disabling the ability to print
  • Save customized preferences to a Meeting Book Template for future use, saving duplication of work
  • Build the meeting book and share to members at the click of a button

How to get it: Included in all BoardEffect packages.

Pro tip: If admins need to limit visibility to certain sections of documents within a meeting book, they can do so with a click of a button without having to create separate books.

3. Customizable approval workflows

BoardEffect’s customizable approval workflows lets you tailor the approval processes to match your unique workflows. This feature is included in all BoardEffect packages, allowing administrators to:

  • Get agenda items approved promptly by everyone that needs to be included
  • Build custom approval trees to match both linear and non-linear workflows
  • Save your customized approval tree as a template to use again for future agenda item approvals
  • Add due date, reminder date and customize workflow email templates

4. Surveys and polls

New survey and polling functionality makes it easy to conduct anonymous or open polls and surveys to gather feedback from board and committee members. Executive leaders and administration staff can use this feature to vote on issues, gauge board member engagement, gather updated skillsets and identify areas for improvement. Here’s a quick look at what you can do with Surveys & Polls:

  • Create new surveys or choose a template
  • Configure survey settings to your needs, including anonymous or confidential responses, allowing comments, and adding a required digital signature
  • Select from multiple question formats, including Free Text Fields, Checkboxes, Dropdown Lists, Radio Buttons and Linear Scale
  • Add due dates and reminder dates, and customize survey email templates
  • Share survey to board or committee members at the click of a button

How to get it: Included in all BoardEffect packages.

Pro tip: For surveys you expect to use regularly, save your survey layout and settings as a template to save you needing to recreate it again in the future.

5. Document libraries

The document library feature simplifies digital document management and lets administrators and board members securely store files in a centralized location for all users to access. Two distinct library types allow you to control access to sensitive information and enhance your data management practices.

  • The Resource Library is available to both Board Members and Admins. It contains files and documents that can be shared across every workroom.
  • The Workroom Library is only available to users who have access to the Workroom. It contains Meeting Books, Handbooks and other files saved in the workroom.
  • Files are organized in a familiar folder structure, and it’s easy to add new files – either through drag-and-drop, our Microsoft 365 Integration, or through browsing your computer files.
  • Board and Committee Members can easily access important files on any device, or through the BoardEffect app.

How to get it: The Resource Library is included in all BoardEffect Packages, and Workroom Libraries will be enabled if you have Workrooms enabled. Talk to your Diligent customer success representative to find out more.

Pro tip: Admins can restrict whether users can view, download or print a file or the contents of a folder. You can use this to ensure your documents remain secure and can only be accessed by authorized users.

You might also like reading New BoardEffect features deliver even more efficiency and accessibility

6. Board member experience

Board and Committee members can access board dashboard and materials on the go with our online board experience available through your browser or our BoardEffect iOS app. The intuitive digital experience lets you:

  • RSVP to meeting invites and view the online meeting book
  • Review the meeting book online – or download or print for offline access
  • Annotate meeting books and documents with private or shared annotations
  • View your newsfeed and outstanding tasks in your dashboard, including outstanding RSVPs, Surveys & Polls, and Approvals
  • Approve items with certified digital signatures

How to get it: Included in all BoardEffect packages.

Pro tip: Download our BoardEffect app here for iOS and Android for easy access on the go.

7. Secure workrooms

Workrooms allow administrators and board chairs to manage multiple boards and committees efficiently, all within the same instance of BoardEffect. With Workrooms, you can:

  • Support multiple boards and committees with their own dedicated Workroom
  • Add Workroom members so that all users have access to only the content they need
  • Collaborate through discussions, polls, surveys, and track tasks relevant to that member’s group
  • Workroom Library provides members secure access to relevant documents
  • RSVP to events, access meeting books and collaborate with other members

How to get it: Included in all BoardEffect packages. Additional board and committee workrooms can be added to BoardEffect. Contact your Diligent customer success representative for more information.

Pro tip: BoardEffect offers an unlimited number of workrooms, so you can create secure spaces for as many groups as you need.

8. Two-factor authentication and single sign-on integrations

To navigate the constantly evolving balance between security and user experience, BoardEffect offers both multifactor authentication (MFA) and single sign-on (SSO) integrations.

  • Multifactor Authentication adds an additional level of security, requiring a user to enter a token in addition to username and password to gain access to the platform.
  • Single Sign-On allows users to conveniently log in using an integration with one of the following providers; Azure AD, Google Apps, Salesforce, AD FS, Okta, SAML2, Shibboleth, PingFederate, or JWT.

How to get it: Speak to your Customer Success Representative if you are interested in setting up multifactor authentication or single sign-on for your organization.

9. Diligent Minutes

To further enhance the efficiency and security of meeting minutes management and action tracking, administrators and secretaries can use Diligent Minutes to:

  • Streamline collection and review of minutes within BoardEffect
  • Automatically capture meeting details, attendees and topics from meeting agenda
  • Record action items and send notifications to assignees
  • Enable real-time collaboration with multiple reviewers to eliminate version-control issues
  • Report on meeting attendees

How to get it: Diligent Minutes is available as an add-on to BoardEffect. Contact your Diligent customer success representative to add this useful functionality to your package.

Pro tip: Use the new Restricted Reviewers functionality to control who can review sensitive agenda items, set due dates per reviewer, and focus reviewers on specific agenda items for a more efficient process.

10. Meeting management and video conferencing integrations

This helpful feature makes it easier and more efficient to manage your remote and hybrid meetings.  Administrators and board and committee members can:

  • Efficiently create upcoming events, send invitations and track RSVPs in one location
  • Use the scheduler feature to poll attendees on that dates and times that best work for them
  • Set the meeting type to in-person, virtual or hybrid
  • Set up video conferencing with our Zoom or Go-To-Meeting integrations or include links to your own

How to get it: Included in all BoardEffect packages.

Pro tip: Board and committee members can subscribe to events, which syncs an event to their external calendar. Choose to sync all upcoming events, events from a specific workroom or a single event to have all updates sync automatically. Synced events will work with Outlook, iCalendar and Google. This functionality must first be enabled by the Administrator in Site Settings > Event Settings.

Existing BoardEffect customers with questions about any of these new features can contact our customer support team today at

Not yet a BoardEffect user? BoardEffect provides innovative boardroom technology to nonprofit organizations. As a Diligent brand helping to serve over 14,000 mission-driven organizations, we empower boards with the tools to drive positive change. Our secure board management software helps to streamline operations, enhance governance practices and enable confident decision-making. With BoardEffect, mission-driven organizations can unlock potential, accelerate mission delivery and make a lasting impact in their communities. Contact us today for a demo and see how secure board management software streamlines operations, enhances governance practices, and enables confident decision-making.

Nonie Dalton

Nonie Dalton is VP of Product for Diligent’s Mission Driven Organizations group, overseeing governance solutions for elected, public sector and volunteer boards in community organizations. She also contributes to the development of new features, market intelligence and product strategy. Nonie holds bachelor of science and master of business administration degrees, specializing in the management of technology.

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