Ten Governing Documents Every Board Member Needs

All nonprofit board members hold important legal responsibilities as fiduciaries of the organizations that they serve. As a nonprofit board member, how can you ensure you have all necessary and important information to make decisions? Use this list as a starting point for the key documents every board member should be familiar with and have easy access to.

  1. Articles of Incorporation – The Articles of Incorporation establish the entity and identify its purpose
  2. Bylaws – The Bylaws establish how the Board of Directors govern the entity
  3. Policy Manual – The Policy Manual establishes operational detail on how the entity is managed
  4. Board Member Roles and Responsibilities - The Board Member Roles and Responsibilities is the “job description” for board members
  5. Board Committee Charters – The Board Committee Charters outline the purpose, scope, and responsibilities of each active committee
  6. Strategic Plan – A Strategic plan outlines a multi-year plan with key focus areas and tactics for achieving mission and purpose
  7. Annual Budget – An Annual Budget is a 12-month budget outlining anticipated revenue and expenses
  8. Annual Operating Plan – The Annual Operating Plan is a 12-month plan based on the strategic plan, outlining goals and activities for the year 
  9. Most Recent Financial Audit – A Financial Audit is an independent review of financial standing for the last completed fiscal year
  10. Most Recent 990 – A 990 is a public tax document for the last completed fiscal year

BoardSpot board management software and board portal helps ensure nonprofit board members have access to important documents like the ones listed above. By having a central organized spot for all documents, board members can easily find the document they are looking for, and know they are looking at the most up-to-date document. BoardSpot eases the load for nonprofit administrators by providing a single central place to upload documents, making document storage and organization a breeze.