Success Story: Northern Ontario Hockey Association


The Northern Ontario Hockey Association (NOHA), as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, needed a platform to help conduct elections and operational votes virtually. The organization chose DirectVoteLive and has been very pleased with the security, simplicity and ease of use it has delivered.

About the Northern Ontario Hockey Association

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​NOHA is the governing body for minor and junior-level ice hockey in Northern Ontario. Founded in 1919, NOHA is sanctioned by the Ontario Hockey Federation and Hockey Canada.

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The Challenge

Each May, NOHA holds an annual general meeting to administer important organizational business – including approving rules and regulations, electing officers, etc. Before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, these meetings would take place in person and delegates would vote by raising their hands at the appropriate times. Since, however, NOHA has held its meetings in fully virtual formats.

Accordingly, the organization needed to find a tool to enable participants to vote and make decisions virtually. That platform needed to be completely secure and simple enough for people with a wide range of technology experience to use without issue.

The Solution

A search commenced for the best tool(s) to use to hold meetings and conduct votes. NOHA received a referral for DirectVoteLive: a software-as-a-service platform that enables voting groups to securely conduct their business regardless of whether people are connecting in person, virtually or in a hybrid meeting. After a successful trial period, NOHA purchased and began using DirectVoteLive.

Administrators also worked with the DirectVoteLive team to stage and conduct multiple test meetings during NOHA’s trial period. There were opportunities to learn the platform, test meeting formats, anticipate potential questions (such as how to ensure each participant casts just one vote) and develop efficiencies for the entire process.

Results and Benefits

Since starting to use DirectVoteLive in 2020, NOHA has conducted its business without any issues. NOHA has successfully used the platform for its two most recent annual general meetings, typically containing 30-40 motions per meeting.

  • All voters cast their ballots securely online, and votes were counted in real time. The meetings proceeded efficiently; they moved briskly and were completed in under two hours.
  • Everyone – administrators, the roughly 125-150 voters in each meeting, the Board, etc. – have really liked the platform and found it very simple to use. DirectVoteLive also has made it easy for less tech-savvy voters to participate and conduct business.
  • The organization is pleased with the platform’s high level of security. There’s complete confidence in the accuracy of vote counts, and also in voter integrity; credentials within voting links ensure just one vote is cast per participating member.

Given this success, NOHA has referred DirectVoteLive to all of its 65 affiliated minor hockey associations as a tool they should use for annual meetings and other voting that takes place virtually. NOHA also plans to use DirectVoteLive again anytime the opportunity arises – including if its annual general meetings continue to be held virtually.

“The DirectVoteLive team is great. They really helped us work through everything we needed and were curious enough to help us anticipate and work through potential questions and issues before they ever became a problem. Just great service.” Jason Marchand, Executive Director of NOHA