Help & FAQ

Committee settings

How can I change a committee name?

You can change a committee name in the 'General' section of the committee settings. This section also allows you to enter a short description that will show up for committee members, set the reporting start month and change the parent committee.
You also need to use this section to delete a committee permanently.

What does the meeting schedule do?

If you enter a recurring meeting schedule (E.g. every first Wednesday of the month), mycommittee will use this to automatically find the next meeting date when you create a new meeting. When you keep the default 'At the call of the chair' you will have to enter the meeting date/time manually.

What are Terms of Reference?

Terms of reference (ToR) describe, at a minimum, the purpose, scope and authority of the committee. The section in the committee settings can be used to enter the ToR directly or you can attached a separate document in the Committee documents section as well.
You can find some more information here.
There are several examples of ToR templates available online. Here is one to get you started

What privacy settings are available?

At mycommittee, we take the privacy of our users very seriously and most of the privacy protections are built-in at the core and cannot be modified. For instance, committee admins will need to enter your name and email address when they add you to a committee. Administrators also have access to your profile information.
Although some of your personal information needs to be entered in order to send you the first invite, no other users will be able to view this profile and contact information until you actually register with mycommittee and confirm your membership.

Some settings can be modified but we always follow the principle to be 'secure and private by default':

  • By default (for each new committee) the email addresses of committee members will be hidden for other users. If your committee highly depends on external email communications, you can change this default setting and make email addresses of members and other contacts visible. (We recommend using the built-in mycommittee messages for total secure and private internal communications).
  • You can allow members and guests to view the meeting agenda's and minutes without having to log on. This setting provides less privacy and should only be used for public committees. The setting is 'off' by default meaning members always need to log on and guests have no access to agendas and minutes.
  • By default, mycommittee does not include the entire message in message notification emails. If you prefer, you can enable this feature but please note that email is not secure and many email providers (E.g. gmail) will process the content of your emails for marketing purposes.

What are approvals

In some committees, the chair needs to approve the agenda or minutes before they are distributed to the members. When you enable this feature in mycommittee, only the chair will have the option to distribute the agenda or the minutes.
How does this work?
Any person with permissions to create an agenda can prepare a draft version of the meeting agenda and when ready for approval use the 'Submit for approval' button. The chair will get an Agenda Approval notification email with a link to the agenda. The chair can return the agenda for corrections if necessary or distribute the agenda if all is ok. The same process can be enabled for the meeting minutes.

How can I share committee information with the general public?

In the committee settings, mycommittee allows you to enable a feature to share selected information on a public web page. This feature is disabled by default. Once you enable this feature, mycommittee will generate a link to a public page for your selected committee. You can use this link to share information. The public committee page has a header section that you can customize freely.
By default, this page will be empty and nothing will be shared but you can enable the following items:

  • Selected meeting agendas and minutes: When enabled, you will see an option on every agenda and minutes page to share the agenda or minutes. You will have to manually share each agenda and minutes individually before they will show up. This allows you to have private meetings mixed with public meetings.
  • Selected documents: If enabled, the document share options window will now include a 'Share public' option. This allows you to only share selected documents on the public web page.
  • Committee membership: A section showing all committee member names with their role in the committee will be added automatically to the public page

If you have a plan that includes subcommittees, you will also be able to share a committee structure page showing all committees that have public sharing enabled.
Please note that anything you share on a public page can be viewed by anyone with access to the Internet and not just the people you share the link with. (E.g. Internet searches can return links to your public web page).

What is an agenda template?

In order to make creating new meeting agendas much more efficient, mycommittee provides the option to create an agenda template.

The template is just an empty agenda structure containing all sections and recurring (standing) items that are on your typical meeting agenda. Each time you create a new meeting, the agenda wizard will automatically populate your agenda with the template you provide. Once your meeting is created, you can freely edit the agenda and add and remove sections as required. Any changes you make to the agenda template won't affect existing meeting agendas. The template is only used when you create a new meeting

The agenda template will be used automatically for all regular scheduled meetings. If you want to create a special meeting and don't want to populate the agenda with the template, simply check the box 'Special meeting' on the first page of the agenda wizard when you create a new meeting. In this case, the wizard will not use the template but create a meeting with an empty agenda.

mycommittee provides a few sample templates for you to choose from. The default agenda template is a very basic and minimal template to get you up and running. See the next section on how to change the default template.

How can I change my default agenda template?

There are a few ways to change the agenda template. In the Committee settings - Format section, click on 'Agenda template' to open the Agenda template manager.

1. Edit the existing template

If your current template already more or less has the structure you need and you only need to make minor changes, choose the 'Edit' tab of the template manager. On this tab you can edit the template in the same way you would edit an agenda in the Agenda wizard. You add and delete sections and add and delete agenda items.

2. Replace the entire template

Your committee might use a much more structured agenda for regular meetings than the standard mycommittee template and it might be easier to replace the existing template entirely. There are a few options to do this:

  • Choose a different sample template: mycommittee also provides a 'Small board template' which has more structure and can be used as a start for board agendas. Simply select this template and switch to the Edit tab to make changes
  • Copy the agenda template from another committee: If your organization is using a more standard approach, you can copy the template from an existing committee. Once copied, you can still make any changes in the Edit tab.
  • Create your own template from scratch: This option will simply delete your current template and switch to the Edit tab so you can start to build your own template.

What are standing items?

Standing items are agenda items that usually appear on the agenda of every regular scheduled meeting. Examples are: review the minutes of the previous meeting, review the agenda of the current meeting, financial report, status report, etc.
If you enter these items in your agenda template (in the committee settings), they will appear automatically on the agenda of every new regular meeting.
When you schedule a special meeting, standing items are not added to the agenda automatically but can be included manually.

Can I only add standing items to the beginning or end of the meeting?

No, you can add standing items to any section of the agenda. A typical simple agenda template could look like this:

1. Standing items (E.g. status update, review minutes, etc.)
2. Business arising (old business)
3. New business
4. Closing items (E.g. Date next meeting)

For a normal agenda you will only have to enter the 'New business' items. mycommittee will take care of the rest!

What is the Scheduled end time on agenda items?

The 'Scheduled end time' on agenda items is a little tool to help you keep your meeting running on schedule. If you enter the time allotted for each agenda item, mycommittee automatically calculates the scheduled end time for each item. This provides guidance during the meeting to make sure you will still have time left for the items at the end of your agenda.

You can enable/disable this feature in the 'Item Format' section of the committee settings

Can members edit or add to the agenda

By default, regular members have no edit access to the agenda. They can add comments to agenda items at any time after the agenda is created but cannot edit the content. Only members with the 'Create agenda' permission have full access to agendas.

mycommittee provides a feature to allow members to make updates to the agenda before the meeting. You can enable this feature by selecting the 'Enable report section in agenda items'. If enabled, members will be able to edit a special section on any agenda item that is assigned to them. Members will not be able to edit the general content or to edit report sections on items assigned to other members. The agenda creator also has access to these report sections

How to change the agenda and minutes header and footer?

You can customize the look and even the content of the agenda and minutes headers and footers. To do this, select the Headers & Footers option in the Committee settings area. You will see four tabs in the template manager. one for each of the sections you can customize:

  • Agenda header
  • Agenda footer
  • Minutes header
  • Minutes footer

Similar to the agenda template, mycommittee also uses templates for the headers and footers on agenda and minutes pages. You can either use the standard built-in headers and footers or you can build your own templates.

To build your own template, select the 'Use custom template' option and use the editor below to create your own design. The templates use placeholders to merge the actual real-time meeting data into the header. Click on 'Available placeholders' to see the full list of supported placeholders. The available placeholders are different for each section of the agenda and minutes.

For example: If you include the {meetingdatetime} placeholder in your template, the placeholder will be replaced with the actual date and time of the meeting in the header or footer. Simply create the header in the format you prefer and add all the placeholders you want to show up.

Alternatively, you can also copy an existing template from another committee.

Can I change the PDF format?

There are a few settings available to change the look and feel of the generated PDF files of meeting agendas and minutes.

1. Show/hide RSVP and attendance sections

If your committee is not using the RSVP or attendance features, you can hide these sections in the generated PDF files. Choose the 'RSVP & Attendance' option in the committee settings to change this option.

2. Customize PDF headers and footers

PDF headers and footers are the headers and footers printed on each page of the document. Use the "PDF Format' option to change these sections.
Similar to the agenda and minutes headers/footers, you can customize the look and the content of these sections. You can choose to use the default built-in header and footer or you can create your own by adding text and available placeholders in the edit window.
Click the 'Refresh review' button to see how your design will look. The preview will use sample data to show the result.

Can I change the logo for my committee only?

Yes, your organization admin can upload a custom logo in the organization area. That logo will replace the default mycommittee logo for all committees in the organization.

If you want your committee to show a logo that is different than the one of your organization, you can upload it in the Custom Logo section of the committee settings. Any logo uploaded here will be specific for this committee only and will not affect other committees in the organization.

How can I delete a committee permanently?

If you no longer need a committee portal you can delete it completely. Click on the 'General' options in the committee settings to delete a committee. You will find a 'Delete' button at the bottom of this page.

Please note that this operation will delete all committee related information (Meetings, messages, documents, etc.) and cannot be undone!

Still have more questions around committee settings?

If you need further help with committee settings, please contact support here. We're always happy to help!

 

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