27th November: Standing Committee’s reasons for recommending annual elections of the ODU committee at the Union’s AGM
As it may be of interest to fellow OD’s to know the Standing Committee’s reasons for recommending annual elections of the ODU committee at the Union’s AGM they are these.
Background: The ODU is a member led organisation and as such, the members should have the ability, and feel empowered to take the
responsibility, to drive change or endorse more of the same. This principle should be front and centre of how the ODU is managed and the significance of this principle outweighs any potential risks to continuity that can readily be militated against.
Reasons for switching to annual elections:
- To uphold, and visibly present, the principle of being an inclusive, open, member led organisation.
2. To increase engagement, and the regularity thereof, by the members.
3. To increase and encourage the number of volunteers and nominations for the various committee positions.
4. To more easily recruit specific expertise.
5. If the committee make-up becomes of serious concern between AGM's, members then have the opportunity to put up new candidates in
under a year.
6. Absent complaints of substance, existing members are likely to keep being voted back till the end of their respective eligibility periods.
7. Those members who are interested enough to want to vote at an AGM will not find it a problem to have to vote for a full committee of 9
or 10 rather than for the replacement of one or two.
8. Members will keep closer contact with the running of the ODU.
9. The increased engagement, sense of trust and ownership by members, will make raising funds easier.
Risks of Annual Election:
- Active members may be able to intrude more easily in the running of the ODU. This risk will be offset by giving electronic voting
capabilities to all, and provide an increased awareness to members of committee activities which will reduce this risk significantly.
2. Project continuity: Projects in progress are likely to involve a number of committee members and not be prejudiced simply due to the
non re-election of one individual. Projects belong to the ODU, and not necessarily any particular member. ODs will be made aware of
this prior to voting, and can decide on its significance in their voting decisions.
3. Someone doing a sound but unobtrusive job on committee may wrongly be thought not worth re-electing. Increased communication of
OD Union activities through OD connect and assigned committee portfolio responsibilities will make their efforts visible. A Chair's
interim report on the work being done on committee could obviate this potential problem.
4. There may be an administrative load involved in dealing with all absentee votes. With new electronic methods, this will be negligible.