Quick Question: Proper recognition

With nominations for the Chartered Governance Institute UK & Ireland Awards now open, this month’s theme is recognition and understanding of the governance profession and function.

With nominations for the Chartered Governance Institute UK & Ireland Awards now open, this month’s theme is recognition and understanding of the governance profession and function.

Participants rated the understanding of the governance function within their organisations at an average score of six out of ten, showing there is progress to be made in highlighting the extent of the services a governance department provides. However, 49% of respondents reported that recognition of the governance team had increased in the last two years and 13% felt that the team had always been well recognised. Conversely, 28% said that recognition had not increased and 10% said that they had never been properly recognised.

We extended the question to look at the understanding of shareholders and external stakeholders and received an almost identical response, again averaging at about six out of ten.

Next, we asked whether participants felt salaries and benefits in their departments were attracting the right talent. The response was split with 43% agreeing with the statement ‘We need to increase salaries to attract better talent’, and 47% confirming ‘Our salaries are at the right level.’ 10% responded that ‘Changing the salary level will not affect the level of talent’.

We received a wide range of suggestions on how to improve recognition of the governance profession. These included better clarity with the general population and stakeholders; highlighting the link to strategy and strategic partnering; governance being seen as enabler; better understanding and support from directors; greater independence of the function; the potential for the governance function to have executive representative such as a chief governance officer or a non-executive representative; changing statutory requirements in the companies act; moving away from the use of the word secretary; better publicity and higher profile consequences for governance failures or public celebration of good governance; and re-enforcing the uniqueness of the profession.

Celebrating the theme of the Governance 2022 conference – the impact of governance – survey participants were proud to have had a positive impact in areas such as: sustainability and environmental policy; EDI; reporting; company culture; stakeholder relations and shareholder offerings; workforce engagement and advice; liaison with regulators; board dynamics and committee evaluations; recruitment and embedding of new directors; board efficiency and subsidiary governance; improving and advising on business strategy; moving to a more commercial approach; organisational structure and information flows; regulatory compliance; and risk evaluation and processes.

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