How To Perform a Runoff Election With ElectionBuddy

January 6, 2020

Congratulations! It’s a … tie?

How To Perform a Runoff Election With ElectionBuddy

Your election has ended. Anticipation rises as you go to view the results. Like a kid on Christmas morning, you run to your computer, log into your ElectionBuddy account, click on your election’s name, and … your eyes widen in dread. There is a tie for the winner.

The democratic way to decide a winner when you end up with a tie is to do a runoff election. A runoff election is when a secondary election is held with only the tied candidates and questions on the ballot.

Don’t panic. ElectionBuddy is well-equipped to help you with your runoff election. Although you didn’t plan on having to take this extra step, ElectionBuddy makes running a runoff easy for you; simply duplicate the election, edit the ballot, and send it out!

Why Is It Important to Do a Runoff?

Regardless of whether you feel like runoff elections are a real-life nightmare, they are important to the election process. This is because it ensures that the person elected is the one you organization members would truly prefer.

Your organization most likely has some rules in place regarding runoff elections so be sure to check those before starting your runoff. By putting the tied opponents in an election against each other, it allows your members to choose the candidate that they prefer out of the tied candidates.

How to Make Your Runoff Successful

Essentially, all your runoff election needs to do is list the members who are in a tie. You can do this by editing your ballot and removing the questions and candidates that were not part of the tie — super simple!

Other things that help increase the turnout for your runoff include:

  • Changing the title of your election so it indicates a runoff; ex., “Board Election 2020,” turns into “Runoff Board Election 2020.”
  • Updating the subject line of your notices to indicate the election is a runoff.
  • Updating your notice to state that this new election is taking place due to a tie that happened in the previous election.
  • If you release the results of your election, including the tie, let your members know to expect a runoff to be occuring shortly for the position or question that resulted in the tie.
Runoff Coin

What Happens If Your Runoff Ends in a Tie, Too?

My suggestion for you is to flip a coin and hope. Just kidding, you might not want to leave the declaration of the winner to flipping a coin (unless maybe if you are in P.E.I). Depending on your organization, you might have to keep positioning your candidates and options against each other until one is elected the winner. However, your organization might have some rules in place in the event of a tie and then another tie, so please be sure to reference your organization’s bylaws before going forward with another runoff.

Those are all the tips and tricks I have for you! If you have any questions about this process, please contact us at support@electionbuddy.com, or check out our help article on the runoff process as well.

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