Skip to main content

Election Management Guidelines

Thursday, July 13, 2023

The Election Management Guidelines (EMG) was created to assist state and local election officials in effectively managing and administering elections. These guidelines complement the technical standards for the Voluntary Voting System Guidelines for voting equipment. Each chapter of the Election Management Guidelines is vetted by recognized election experts and offers practical discussions of election issues, including examples and helpful tips.  The EMG’s goal is to familiarize election officials with election processes and challenges they will likely encounter during their tenure, and is designed to be accessible to election officials at all levels. 

The EAC recognizes that the election administration landscape has changed since the previous EMG was released over 15 years ago, necessitating this update. Since the federal designation of elections as critical infrastructure in 2017, the physical security, cybersecurity, and continuity of operations in the event of a disaster have become essential components of national security. State election laws and regulations, election technologies, and best practices are constantly evolving to meet the needs of resilient and secure election systems. As result, the EAC has updated the EMG to address these issues and more.

To request physical copies of the EMG, please email [email protected].  





The EMG covers in its chapters: 

  1. Elections Office Administration 
  2. Contingency Planning 
  3. Accessibility 
  4. Building Community Partnerships 
  5. Communicating with the Public 
  6. System Security 
  7. Physical Security 
  8. Voting System Certification 
  9. Acceptance Testing 
  10. Ballot Building 
  11. Pre-Election Testing 
  12. Absentee Voting and Vote-by-Mail 
  13. Uniformed and Overseas Citizens 
  14. Voting Location Management 
  15. Provisional Ballots 
  16. Documentation and Audit Trail 
  17. Post-Election Audits 
  18. Canvassing and Certifying an Election 
  19. Recounts