Success Story: Gleneagles Country Club
The Board of Governors at Gleneagles Country Club decided to include electronic voting for their annual election but wanted to maintain their mail-in voting option. They turned to SBS to help them implement a hybrid election.
Gleneagles Country Club was established in 1984 as a private country club with some of the most legendary professional golfers and tennis players as our first members. Today, Gleneagles has grown into a private, residential country club community with more than 1,000 residents, premium social amenities, a championship golf course and more.
Before 2021, the annual Gleneagles election was managed internally and only allowed voting by mail. This posed several challenges for the club as half of the members are seasonal and during the election the ballots could be mailed to another residence leaving them without the opportunity to vote. The Gleneagles Board of Governors passed a resolution to allow for electronic voting to reach members who may miss their mail-in ballot. The Board also wanted to maintain their mail-in voting option to accommodate members who traditionally participate with a paper ballot. The task at hand was to seamlessly integrate an electronic voting option to create a hybrid election.
Gleneagles began searching for an election services provider who could accommodate keeping the paper balloting while adding in a digital voting option. Multiple country clubs shared their recommendations for SBS services, so, after a thorough introduction and conducting a mock election, Gleneagles’ leadership team felt comfortable and confident partnering with SBS. They moved forward with a myDirectVote hybrid election offering more than 1,000 voters the option to vote online or by paper ballot.
“SBS is outstanding. Every time I reached out to our account managers, the response time was immediate and amazing,” said Catherine Tirino, Office Manager at Gleneagles Country Club. “It was the same professionalism with everyone I worked with at SBS.”
Results and Benefits
The first hybrid election in club history resulted in nearly half of the members voting and more than 55% of the ballots being cast online. “Our members have a wide range of technology experience,” said Catherine. “Those who cast their ballots online were very satisfied with the process. The hope is that we will provide additional communication and online voting training next year to further boost participation in the election.”
“As the first year running a hybrid project, there was no question of the integrity of the election,” said Catherine. “It went a lot smoother than I thought it would!”
Catherine advised other member organizations introducing an electronic or hybrid option to recognize that the first year of the new process, members will be dependent on organization leaders to communicate thoroughly and educate them on the process. Gleneagles is committed to the hybrid election process where it provides all members the opportunity to participate in the club’s governance.