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Everything you need to know about board portals

Read up on all of the points regarding board portals that you must consider before choosing a vendor and a solution.

Introduction to Board Portals

A board portal is a digital tool that facilitates secure communication between directors and senior executives on their chosen device anytime and anywhere. Designed to elevate transparency and practice good governance, it provides features that are meant to streamline the entire meeting process – from pre-meeting preparation all the way to minutes distribution.

Typically, board portals also come with a suite of tools including agenda builder, meeting presentation tools, search capabilities, voting, and other features. Moreover, board portals positively contribute to a company’s bottom line by saving time and resources, cutting down logistical expenses, and helping organizations achieve sustainability targets.

  • Enhance Collaboration and Productivity

    Enhance collaboration and productivity by enabling directors to conduct meetings and discussions anytime and anywhere

  • Access Confidential Documents

    Allow directors to access confidential documents quickly and securely

  • Distribute Information

    Distribute information across the board in an efficient and simplified manner

  • Cut Down Meeting Preparation Time

    Cut down meeting preparation time and logistical expenses

  • Streamline Decision-Making

    Streamline decision-making by empowering organizational leaders to review, assign, and authorize on a unified platform

  • Facilitate Board Actions

    Facilitate important board actions such as voting, surveys, report generation, and other related matters

Essential Features of Board Portals

Given the dependence of directors and secretaries alike on board portals, it is important that the chosen solution will be able to satisfy the vast requirements of any given company whether it may be a non-profit or a listed company. As such, executives must be on the lookout out for the right technology for their organization.

Essential Features of Board Portals - Strong Security System

Strong Security System

Considering that top management deals with confidential information on a regular basis, the need to identify a highly secure platform is a high priority. The board portal system must adhere to security standards and must be able to fend off breaches in the network. Data protection at all levels – from user authentication and document encryption to access right control and automatic purging for lost devices – must be available.

Essential Features of Board Portals - Streamlined Meeting Management

Streamlined Meeting Management

The board portal must be able to streamline the pre-meeting preparation to post-meeting document distribution. To make it a worthwhile investment for an organization, secretaries and directors alike must buy in and clearly benefit from this solution. In a nutshell, it should be able to eliminate the tedious processes associated with meetings as well as streamline communications in a simple and secure manner.

Essential Features of Board Portals - Easy-to-Use Collaborative Tools and Interface

Easy-to-Use Collaborative Tools and Interface

The board portal must live up to its name and must be an efficient way of collaborating in and out of the boardroom. It must be able to support numerous activities such as scheduling meetings, generating meeting packs and minutes, assigning and tracking action items, voting, presenting, and signing using e-signature among others – while maintaining an intuitive interface that can be learned in as fast as 30 minutes.

Essential Features of Board Portals - Diversified Hosting Options

Diversified Hosting Options

Given the varying levels of requirements on a company, industry, country, and regional level, a board portal must be able to adapt to the needs of every organization. As such, there should be an ample amount of flexibility in selecting an adequate hosting option without compromising security.

Essential Features of Board Portals - Omni-Platform Compatibility

Omni-Platform Compatibility

The integration of technology in company policies has resulted in an explosion in the use of mobile devices in the workplace. Initiatives such as the Bring Your Own Device have encouraged employees to use their personal gadgets for business-related matters. Having said this, the board portal must work comfortably and consistently on a user’s preferred platform – whether it may be Apple, Android, Mac or Windows.

Key Criteria for Board Portal Selection

The global board portal market is expected to show continuous growth in the coming years. Having said this, many companies have sought to capitalize on this phenomenon by developing and marketing their board portals to the public. While there are several board portal providers in the marketplace, it is imperative that the right board portal in terms of fit, features, and functionalities must be chosen by an organization. As such, aside from the essential features discussed earlier, it is vital that the right criteria must be used in terms of selecting a board portal solution:

Key Criteria for Board Portal Selection - Security


Security is often the main concern of companies planning to switch to a digital solution. With the constant threats imposed by malicious groups and individuals, a board portal must demonstrate its capacity to defend classified documents against these attacks. Ask your vendors:

  • What are the measures in place to preserve data integrity?
  • Which third-party certifications do you have?
  • How can we grant, limit, and track access within the system?
  • How can you protect information in case of inadvertent events (e.g. stolen devices)?
  • How often are penetration tests performed to guarantee data protection?

Azeus Convene Highlights

  • Data integrity

    Daily automated backups to ensure data integrity

  • SSAE16- and ISO27001 compliant hosting

    SSAE16- and ISO27001compliant hosting and AES-256 network and document encryption

  • Audit logging

    Audit logging and fine-grained access control

  • Automatic purge

    Automatic purge for lost devices

  • Infrastructure penetration testing

    Regular application and infrastructure penetration testing

With its highly efficient board portal for iPad, Android, Windows and Mac, Convene was a clear winner, offering great value for comprehensive features, such as ADFS, intuitive design and stringent security.

Thayne Shaffer, Senior Vice President and Controller at America First Credit Union

Key Criteria for Board Portal Selection - Reputation and Service

Reputation and Service

A provider must be able to prove its experience and capabilities in not only the field of board portals, but also technology. An assessment of its track record should be done through the following questions:

  • How long has the vendor been around in this field? What has been their growth rate for the past years?
  • Has the vendor taken steps into improving its product in the recent years?
    What are these improvements?
  • What are the types of organisations this vendor has provided its service to?
    Are these aligned with the industry that I belong to?
  • What is the feedback from their clients? Are they happy about their decisions?
  • How does the vendor respond to support issues? Do they satisfy all their clients’ requirements

Azeus Convene Highlights

  • Proven track record

    25+ years of proven track record in the field of information technology

  • Product improvement

    5 generations (and counting) of product improvement

  • Exponential increase of users

    Exponential increase in number of users in recent years

  • Repeat customers

    98% repeat customers with multi-year contracts

  • Global support

    365/24/7 global support

We have about 150 users across the organization. The system is intuitive to use and the support that we’ve received from the account manager, Gemma, has been excellent. She provided initial training and also additional training when two new administrators joined.

Alison Walker-Fraser, Corporate Governance Manager at Construction Industry Training Board

Key Criteria for Board Portal Selection - Functionality


Managing a board means dealing with an extensive range of activities – from pre-meeting preparation to post-meeting document distribution. A board portal must be able to address the requirements of your organization in a satisfactory manner. Basic concerns such as the following must be promptly attended to:

  • Will using the board portal enhance productivity and collaboration in our workplace?
  • Are there opportunities to use collaborative tools during discussions?
  • Is the board portal compatible without directors’ preferred devices?
  • How many languages does the board portal support?
  • What are the advanced features it offers?

Azeus Convene Highlights

  • Supported languages

    11 supported languages (Arabic, Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), English, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, and Spanish)

  • Streamline meeting

    Streamlines the entire meeting process

  • Easy interface

    Easy-to-use and intuitive interface and tools sync in real-time

  • Special features

    Special features like Conversations, Surveys, Fingerprint Authentication, etc.

  • Compatibility

    Available on Android, Apple, Blackberry, Mac, and Windows

When compared to the other board portals, Convene was the best one; it had the best features. It gave me exactly what I wanted, and gave all the features that Irequired to satisfy our board’s needs.

Ian Roelle, President of the Grand Bahama Port Authority

Key Criteria for Board Portal Selection - Return on Investment

Return on Investment

Buying a board portal is an investment. Considering the amount of resources poured in for this initiative, picking the right vendor should be a careful decision. Companies must be able to quantitatively measure how much they can potentially save through a set of metrics such as an ROI calculator. Given this, the board portal must be able to satisfy your company’s bottom line objectives. This can be measured by asking the following queries:

  • How many papers can I save by using this solution in an entire year?
  • How much does this solution cost? How does it compare with other alternatives?
  • What is the expected rate of hours saved in meeting preparation?
  • Will it be able to alleviate this tedious process?
  • Will this solution help drive down costs in the organization? Is it significant enough?

Azeus Convene Highlights

  • Paper saved

    90,000* sheets of paper saved

  • Cheaper than others

    50% cheaper than other solutions in the market

  • Preparation time saved

    90%* of preparation time saved in a year

  • Dollars saved

    Tens of thousands of dollars saved per year

Convene has saved time, money, improved our decision-making and the way we work. It has increased productivity and consistency of information. We’re really happy with the program. It just makes life so much easier.

Tamara Boyd, Corporate Services Manager at Boort District Health

Azeus Convene

The Smart, Simple, and Secure Board Portal Solution

The Smart, Simple, and Secure Board Portal Solution

Azeus Convene is a multi-awarded and leading board portal solution used by boards of directors of FTSE 100, Fortune 500, financial institutions, governments, and non-profit organizations in more than 100 countries. Our innovative board meeting software gives you complete control over the entire meeting process and ensures good governance driven by security and accountability.

It has everything you need to run digital meetings. Designed specifically for executives and administrators, it streamlines the entire meeting process.

Key Features

Enjoy a comprehensive set of tools through the use of our board portal software.

  • Pre-Meeting



    • Attach documents to an agenda Attach documents to an agenda
    • Invite participants on the fly Invite participants on the fly
    • Distribute meetings and documents Distribute meetings and documents to participants
    • Send meeting Notifications Send meeting invitations, reminders and notifications
    • Schedule a one-time Schedule a one-time or recurring meeting
    • Attach documents to an agenda
    • Invite participants on the fly
    • Distribute meetings and documents
    • Send meeting Notifications
    • Schedule a one-time
  • During Meeting



    • Start remote meeting Start remote meeting
    • Enable real-time interaction Enable real-time interaction
    • Navigate files via page thumbnails Navigate files via page thumbnails
    • page synchronization Follow presenter’s flow through page synchronization
    • Direct participant’s attention Direct participant’s attention through laser pointer too
    • Start remote meeting
    • Enable real-time interaction
    • Navigate files via page thumbnails
    • page synchronization
    • Direct participant’s attention
  • Post-Meeting

    Post Meeting

    Document Distribution

    • Review past meetings Review past meetings
    • Download private and share Download private and shared annotations on meeting documents
    • Send meeting summary via email Send meeting summary via email
    • Generate and distribute meeting Generate and distribute meeting minutes instantaneously
    • Compile meeting pack as a PDF Compile meeting pack as a PDF
    • Review past meetings
    • Download private and share
    • Send meeting summary via email
    • Generate and distribute meeting
    • Compile meeting pack as a PDF

Going Beyond the Boardroom

The use of board portals has been extended well beyond the premises of the boardroom. Before, it was exclusive only to the hands of C-Suite executives and board of directors. Now, it has been deployed across the entire organization — from audit committees to ad hoc teams. The exponential growth in the number of users has strengthened this category from being considered as a niche to becoming a fast-growing market.

As organizations realize the potential for board portals to become an enterprise-wide solution for integrated communications, more companies are being convinced to transition into an electronic environment. Companies of all sizes, from nonprofits to multinationals, are increasingly moving away from paper-based formats to digital means of exchanging, storing, and distributing information. They see that board portals offer a wide array of benefits, some of which include reduced costs and improved security and convenience.

In addition to these, there’s also increased scrutiny and expectations from the public to not just comply with preexisting standards but also become societal institutions that become cultivators of best practices. Indeed, opportunities for breakthroughs and recognition await those who take a proactive stance. The future of the board portal market is bright and promising and those who choose to adopt early will reap the most benefits.

Experience Convene

Learn how Convene can give you a great meeting experience. Get a 30-day free trial with no cost or obligation.

United States (+1)
(+1) *

You may also contact us at 1 800 795 2024 or at