The New Hampshire House of Representatives’ 2021 meeting was hardly a conventional one. In an effort to reduce person-to-person contact, representatives opted for a drive-in outdoor voting session from the comfort of their own cars. With over 300 representatives convening in a space larger than two football fields, it was clear that taking a traditional show of hands or “yea/nay” wouldn’t be sufficient to process every vote.
Any voting session can be made fast, simple and secure with the help of a dedicated voting system. Voters can tally and process their results automatically for a seamless voting experience. Using a Meridia’s audience response system, which consists of a long-range USB antenna and secure wireless voting ‘clickers’, anyone can begin collecting and processing votes in just a few simple steps:
Begin by defining the space that your meeting will convene in. Voting sessions can take place in small enclosed spaces, open outdoor areas, as well as multiple locations simultaneously. In the case of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, the challenge was to deliver the sound as well as receive the votes from the far corner of a 900ft-long parking lot.
Decide if your voters’ voice needs to be ‘heard’ anonymously, or if you want to track each person’s vote individually. When distributing the keypads, provide required identification and associated clicker. If you, like the New Hampshire House of Representatives, are expecting well over 300 people, make to set up multiple registration desks to distribute the flow of incoming participants.
Using a single computer, anyone can set up a voting session using Meridia electronic voting system within seconds. After distributing the dedicated clickers to participants, install the Meridia’s TownVOTE software on your preferred device or multiple devices (for backup). With provided training, anyone can operate a voting session on their own, but if needed, Meridia can be on-site to assist.
Clearly explain the voting instructions and hold a test vote or two to gain everyone’s buy-in and confidence. Once your session is open, notify your participants that they can begin voting. Each clicker is clearly labelled and color-coded for ease of use. Anyone can change their vote as many times as needed before the motion ends. Each vote is confirmed directly on the voting device with a clear “OK” sign displayed on the screen.
The results of each motion are clearly displayed in Meridia TownVOTE software on the host device and via a screen-share or a video switch. The operator can choose to display how each individual voted or show the results anonymously as an aggregate. TownVOTE displays a passed motion in green and a failed motion in red.
Even small meetings can be hindered by inefficiency and tedium without an effective voting system. As the size of a voting session increases, so too can the complications. Speed, efficiency, and ease of voting become increasingly vital components as the size of a meeting grows, especially in the cold winter months like the Representatives’ January 6th assembly.
Whether an outdoor voting session or a small town meeting, Meridia has you covered. To learn more about how Meridia Audience Response Systems can help you with your next meeting, contact us.