The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Online Voting Systems

April 20, 2022

Many companies now offer online voting systems for organizations to streamline their elections. And it doesn’t end there! 

You could be electing a new class president, choosing the next CEO for your company, or voting on a crucial company decision. An online voting system like we provide is an excellent way to save time and money.

Yet there are some disadvantages to online voting. This article will discuss both the pros and cons of the process. These ideas will help you decide if you should implement the system in your organization. We’ll also consider if you can improve election security by implementing an online voting system.

What Is An Online Voting System?

An online voting system is a platform that allows organizational members to cast their votes electronically, which can be through a website, mobile app, or any internet-connected device.

You can conduct various types of elections through an online voting system. For example, you can use it for a simple majority vote, where the option or the candidate with the most votes wins. You can also use it for a more complex voting system like proportional representation, where each vote holds weight according to the voter's preference.

Everyday use cases for an online voting system include:

  • Board of directors elections
  • Shareholder meetings
  • Homeowners Association (HOA) board elections
  • Union leadership votes
  • Student government elections

A typical online voting session goes like this:

  • First, the voter logs in to the voting system using their unique username and password.
  • Next, they select the candidates or options they want to elect.
  • Finally, they submit their vote, and the system tallies the results.

What Are The Advantages Of Online Voting Systems?

The advantages of online voting systems include increased efficiency, improved accuracy, and greater voter engagement compared to paper ballots. 

Increased Efficiency

One of the most significant advantages of online voting systems is incredible efficiency. With traditional paper-based voting, there are a lot of steps involved, from printing ballots to counting votes by hand. You can avoid all of that with online voting.

With an online system, you can send out electronic ballots to all of your voters in just a few clicks. And once the voting period is over, the system will automatically tally the results, so you don't have to do it yourself, saving your organization a lot of time and money.

Improved Accuracy

Another advantage of online voting systems is that they tend to be more accurate than traditional paper-based systems. On the other hand, there's always the potential for human error with paper ballots, whether it's miscounting votes or mixing up ballots.

But with an online voting system, the votes are tallied automatically, so there's no chance for human error, giving you peace of mind knowing that your results are accurate.

Greater Turnout And Voter Engagement

Another advantage of online voting is that it can increase voter turnout because it's more convenient for voters to cast their ballots online than to have to go to a physical polling place.

In addition, online elections can also improve voter engagement. It can be easy for voters to feel disconnected from the process of traditional voting. But with online voting, they can see the results in real-time, making them feel more engaged in the process.

What Are The Disadvantages Of Online Voting Systems?

The two major concerns about online voting systems are election security and transparency.

The Security Of Online Voting Systems

One of the most significant disadvantages of online voting systems is that they're not as secure as traditional paper-based systems because there's always the potential for hackers to tamper with the results.

To improve election security, you should look for a system that uses encryption to protect the data. The system must get tested by independent security experts.

For example, we secure our online voting system using 256-bit encryption—the same level of security that major banks offer. Plus, we don't share user and voter data, which means your elections stay private and confidential.

Lack Of Transparency

Another disadvantage of online voting is that it can lack transparency. With traditional paper-based voting, voters can see people counting the ballots. But with online voting, the process is entirely electronic, making it harder to verify the results.

It’s essential to look for an online voting system that offers transparency features. For example, some systems provide a live election results page where voters can see the results as they roll in.

Our voting system also offers election audit, which means the votes cast using our system are auditable. We also provide independent verification, where an independent, third-party accountant ensures the election process is fair. 

Final Thoughts

If you need to set up an election for your organization, consider the advantages and disadvantages illustrated above. What’s most important to you, efficiency, accuracy, or transparency? Take time to think through these criteria and decide if online elections are the right choice for you!

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