Though members may view the association secretary as an individual who quietly records board meeting minutes, the secretary’s job is actually quite complex. In addition to formatting, recording and distributing meeting minutes, the association secretary must maintain correspondence and store and retrieve association documents. Some organizations have a recording secretary and a corresponding secretary. This relieves the pressure of one person doing both jobs.
The secretary is responsible for maintaining all records of the association and usually signs financial and other official association documents. The secretary often delegates the task of maintaining records to a professional manager, but the responsibility for the documents’ integrity remains with the secretary.
Secretarial duties often include setting up and maintaining a filing system. If the developer sets up the association’s initial filing system, the homeowner board must update the system so that it meets the community’s current needs. New secretaries may want to examine different systems to find the one that works best for the association.
Secretaries should select the best place to store association files. For paper records, a good storage area is safe from fire and flood. Digital records must be protected not only from physical harm but from numerous cyber threats like hackers, power interruptions and failure to back up data.
Consider storing duplicate files off-site and off line in case of an emergency. Establish a file retention schedule and purge files accordingly. A professional manager or management company can assist the secretary with many of these duties.