The ability to conduct polls spontaneously is key.
The enactment of laws, even the approval of committee rules, rarely proceeds without some level of discussion if not outright contention. Opinions get expressed, arms get twisted, voices get raised. It’s not unusual for parties privy to the discussion to introduce alternative wordings or entire legislative amendments to a matter that will eventually be put to a vote.
You already know the traditional role that an audience response system (ARS) can play in such scenarios. The wording of a rule or a bill can be put for a vote and the voting body can use clickers to vote immediately on the matter. Many ARS systems can support such votes, but only a subset of those systems are truly helpful when the discussion is dynamic. If someone proposes an amendment that no one has previously considered, how easily can you, in real time, put a new live poll in front of your voting audience?
Can you present a poll while you’re on a roll?
Clearly, if your ARS system requires some complicated coding to create a poll and then capture responses, it’s not going to be very helpful when the meeting is underway and a brilliant amendment is offered up for consideration. You’ll want to make sure your ARS provides you with the flexibility to create new polls on the fly and to capture responses in an organized manner.
This ability to create a poll on a roll turns out to be important in many scenarios. If you’re engaging with an audience, particularly on a sensitive or charged topic, and you suddenly detect that there’s a question you should ask, you don’t want to skip the question simply because you have not already prepared a poll to support that question. Rather, you want an ARS system that makes it easy for you to create new questions on the fly.
Be sure to drill down into the system’s features for poll creation to see if the system is going to be able to support you when those unanticipated opportunities for engagement arise.