Election services provider UK Engage examines its electronic voting system in relation to how its reporting functionality can identify areas for improved engagement for NHS Trusts.


Inclusion, diversity and equality are strived for by many organisations, including NHS Foundation Trusts.  This year, NHS Providers will be tackling these subjects, among others, at its Annual Conference.

When it comes to the election process, Foundation Trusts can get a good understanding of member engagement from the level of participation in both the nomination and voting stages of Council of Governor Elections. For example, is there a diverse range of members coming forward to stand as candidates in Council of Governor elections?   Which demographic groups of members are more engaged in the process? Are there any variances relating to gender, age, days of the week, or time of day? The real-time voting analysis reports that the UK Engage electronic voting system provides, offers a valuable way of gaining insight into which member types are engaged in your voting process, and ultimately responsible for electing candidates.  And, what’s more, with access being granted direct to clients, NHS Trusts have valuable information at their fingertips, during the voting period. By choosing an electronic voting platform that has a built-in reporting function, you can see at a glance a breakdown of the electorate. Common reporting criteria includes: –

  • Voter turnout (cumulative / daily / hourly)
  • Voter turnout by channel
  • Voter turnout by gender
  • Voter turnout by ethnicity
  • Voter turnout by age

Electronic intelligence such as this can help to review turnout progress, evaluate the most effective channels for your voting members, and better target the segments of your electorate that are not participating in the election.  This function is a handy tool for NHS Foundation Trusts looking to encourage certain groups to vote, or indeed stand as candidates for election.  We examine the most common insight reports: –

Voter turnout per day/hour (cumulative / daily / hourly)

Once the notice of poll has been issued and your electronic voting system goes live, many NHS Trust clients are keen to see the turnout. Most systems, like UK Engage’s, will be able to provide clients with their own login details to view real-time electronic voting progress.  Some systems, like ours, may even allow you to input an overall voter turnout ‘target’ so you can see the progress towards that target, as the election goes on.

Voter turnout by channel

Seeing which channel your staff and public members prefer can help determine their voting preferences. It also helps to budget for your next election.  Electronic voting eliminates the cost of postal voting ballot packs, therefore the more members using electronic voting, the more money your trust saves.  Generally, members without an email address are sent a paper ballot pack and are given the option to vote by post or online.  If the option to vote online is simple and quick to do, voters generally have no problem choosing this option, so it’s important to choose an electronic voting system which is user-friendly. Any postal packs can also include a GDPR-compliant preference form with email capture device so that electronic voting can be used as the vehicle next time.

Voter turnout by gender

If you have this field within the data you send to your election services provider, you will be able to see whether females or males are more engaged with your election (for security, UK Engage’s electronic voting system encrypts all votes, it reports if an individual has voted, but not how they voted).   If there is a wide gender split, the trust can investigate why this is and work on engagement strategies to close this gap.

Voter turnout by ethnicity

This report provides an important insight into your member voting behaviour for your Council of Governor Election.  If there are significant gaps, this will indicate to the trust that work needs to be done to engage different ethnic groups, better ensuring the diversity of your election. UK Engage will work with the trust to support or develop engagement strategies to engage these groups.

Voter turnout by age

Reporting relating to the age of voter can be useful in determining which age brackets are more engaged with the voting process.  If the analysis shows that certain groups are not engaged, efforts can be made to understand the reasons why, and corrective action can be taken to review engagement strategies for those groups.


There are various categories which can be used for the purposes of voting analysis, the examples above are just a few that UK Engage’s electronic voting system can accommodate.  Individual access and reporting give the client the opportunity to monitor the election, identify potential problem areas and make short, medium and long-term plans to improve engagement, in order to achieve better election inclusivity and engagement.

Learn more about our electronic voting system>>

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