Report on the new Online Voting
The OTC chapter AIOD Germany has implemented a new tool for course evaluations. At the last General Assembly in Amsterdam (June 2018) the internet-based and easy-to-use system has been introduced. AIOD draws a positive conclusion so far.
No paper required
Before AIOD Germany created the new system, most OTC chapters did their evaluation on paper. However, time changes and paper-based votings are not only out-dated, but they also take longer to fill in and, eventually, to evaluate. For the new voting system, no paper is required and the results can be downloaded by the course organizers immediately. The voting is done via a link, which means participants do not have to download an application, but can easily fill in the questions online. The template AIOD Germany created is complying with the Corporate Identity of AIOD and OTC and can be adjusted to the individual need of each course.
A long process
AIOD Germany had been using evaluation forms for more than 10 years. “Then, in 2005 we bought a TED-system (Mobi-TED) with handhelds/remote controls together with the BG Murnau”, says Melanie Kall, CEO of AIOD Germany. The system was working well and results could immediately appear on the screen. However, it always took a while to make the results available to the speakers and the data size was unacceptably high. In addition, the system contained two boxes of remotes and computers that had to be shipped to every course. It became clear to AIOD that the system was difficult to use for people who are not familiar with the soft- and hardware that came with it. Finally, one remote after the other broke and the company ran out of business so that AIOD could not reorder the remotes anymore. Melanie Kall adds, “Nowadays, the old system is not even complying with the privacy policies that have been highly tightened in Germany.” Hence, AIOD started to develop its own online voting. Since its introduction in 2017, they have been using it for every course. The conclusion is good so far. As Melanie Kall points out, “At the moment we have a feedback rate of 70-80 percent. The participants often take the opportunity to fill in their thoughts, comments, and ideas in the text boxes.” After the participants completed the voting at the end of a course, they receive a code. If they present the code at the desk, they will receive their course certificate. This ensures that the voting is done and brings more liability for the course organizers.
AIOD Germany tries to actually implement the feedback they receive in the evaluation forms. However, also the online voting still has to be perfected. In closing, Melanie Kall says, “We enjoy playing with the program and improving the features. This leads us to a hopefully perfect product for the entire OTC family.”
Melanie Kall is CEO of AIOD Germany and the one, who developed and introduced the new course evaluation system.