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Non Executive Directorships

Charity Commission x 2 Board Members

Location: London

Date Posted: 19/06/2019

Closing Date: 13/05/2019

Vacancy Description

The Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the Rt Hon Jeremy Wright MP, wishes to appoint two Board members to the Charity Commission for England and Wales. These are public appointments and will be conducted in compliance with the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ Code of Practice for Ministerial Appointments to Public Bodies under the principles of merit, fairness and openness. The appointment is for a term of three years

 

The Charity Commission for England and Wales

The Charity Commission is the registrar and regulator of charities in England and Wales. It is an independent, non-Ministerial Government Department accountable directly to Parliament. It is based across four sites, employing approximately 420 staff with a budget of £27 million.

There are approximately 168,000 registered charities in England and Wales, with approximately 700,000 people serving as trustees, overwhelmingly on a voluntary basis, some of whom serve as trustees of more than one charity. While some of these registered charities are household names, the majority – about 80% – have an income below £100,000 a year and employ no staff.

As registrar, the Commission is responsible for maintaining an accurate and up-to-date register of charities. This includes deciding whether organisations are charitable and should be registered. It also removes charities that are not considered to be charitable, no longer exist, or do not operate.

As regulator, the Commission has both compliance and enablement functions. It is responsible for investigating and monitoring charities’ compliance with charity law and regulation; it takes enforcement action when there is malpractice or misconduct.  It also provides online services and guidance to help charities run as effectively as possible, ensuring charities meet their legal requirements, and makes appropriate information about each registered charity widely available.

Our Statement of Strategic Intent 2018-2023 explains why the Commission must be more than the sum of our statutory objectives if we are to fulfil our purpose and meet our overall ambition of maximising the benefit of charity to society without devaluing what makes charity important to people.

 

Person Specification

Vacancies for two Non-Executive Directors will be created when two members complete their terms in November 2019. These are senior roles requiring people with the necessary experience and non-executive skills to support the Chair in providing strategic leadership and oversight of the Charity Commission.

 

Person specification

Successful candidates will have strong interpersonal, intellectual and analytical skills and sound judgement, together with a commitment to and appreciation of good corporate governance and public service. Candidates with non-executive director and/or senior executive experience at Executive Committee level in the private, public and/or not-for-profit sector (including those for whom this would be a first non-executive board appointment) are encouraged to apply. The Commission’s work is highly varied and engages with people and institutions throughout England and Wales: the Board seeks to reflect that diversity in its composition.

 

Essential Criteria

All candidates must be able to meet the following criteria:

  • A career record of achievement and high performance in the private, public and/or not-for-profit sector, with an ability to operate effectively on the Board or senior committee of an established organisation.
  • An ability to guide the Commission’s strategic direction, use sound judgement, and consider and challenge complex issues from an impartial and balanced viewpoint.
  • Strong intellectual and analytical ability, with excellent listening, influencing and communication skills and a constructive style in challenging management recommendations where necessary.
  • Experience of giving or holding others to account via effective controls and assurance systems for risk, performance and quality.
  • An understanding of corporate governance and a commitment to the principles of public service, with the highest standards of personal propriety in relation to governance, accountability, risk and financial management.
  • A commitment to and an understanding of the charity sector’s value to the public and – as part of that – the importance of its effective, independent, proportionate, and impartial regulation in the public interest.
  • An understanding of the Charity Commission’s diverse range of stakeholders and the inter-relationships between the charity sector and the Government/public/private sectors.

 

Preferred Knowledge and Experience

All Boards require a range of knowledge and experience to be effective in their scrutiny, challenge and support of the Executive.  Over the next five years, the Commission must continue to improve its operational performance if it is to deliver on its strategy.

 

We are seeking candidates with experience of one or more of the following areas to complement the collective skills of the Board. Relevant experience will not necessarily have been gained in an executive role, because we are looking for the capability to scrutinise and challenge effectively as a non-executive Board member:

 

  • operations and customer service. Experience of operations functions processing high volumes of inquiries covering a wide range of issues and degrees of complexity to high standards of service deliv Experience of implementing change programmes which have delivered significant and sustained improvement in operational performance would be an advantage.

 

  • digitisation of services and emerging technologies to enable users to “self-serve”. Successful procurement and/or implementation of major technology-led change programmes in support of operational and digital strategies – together with the ability to communicate effectively the benefits of technology change, and the risks of failure, to the business.

 

  • collection and provision of Big Data to improve performance and facilitate innovation. The Charity Commission needs to use the rich data it collects more effectively to increase the impact and performance of charities, and to better inform the public in the choices they make about the charities they support. Experience of using and exploiting the potential of Big Data to develop services or create new opportunities would be an advantage.

 

We are keen to maintain the gender balance of the Board and to continue to improve the wider diversity of our membership. The Charity Commission welcomes and encourages applications from people of all backgrounds, located in all parts of England and Wales and from underrepresented groups – everyone who can apply their skills and experience to these demanding roles.

 

Additional Information

Role of the Board and its members

The Chair and eight Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) are ‘Commission Members’ and ultimately responsible and accountable for ensuring that the Commission fulfils its statutory objectives, general functions, duties and appropriately exercises the legal powers vested in it under the Charities Act and other legislation. The Commission Members have also reserved to themselves collectively the power to make some regulatory decisions.

 

The Chief Executive, who is accountable to the Non-Executive members of the Board, is responsible for the operational and day-to-day management of the Commission; as Accounting Officer, she is directly accountable to Parliament.

 

Following a review of Governance, a unitary Board of the Commission was established in September 2018, of which the Chief Executive is now a member. Like all corporate unitary boards, its main tasks are to set the vision and long-term strategic direction of the organisation, agree annual budgets and business plans, and set the risk framework and policies within which the Chief Executive and her team operate and for which they are held to account by the Board.

 

The Commission’s Governance Framework sets out in detail the respective roles and responsibilities of the Commission, Board and the Executive.

 

The Board is supported by four committees, whose chairs and members are Board members.

 

Conflicts of Interest

Candidates must note the requirement to declare any interests they may have that might cause questions to be raised about their approach to the business of the Charity Commission. They are required to declare any relevant business interests, shareholdings, positions of authority, retainers, consultancy arrangements or other connections with commercial, public or voluntary bodies, both for themselves and for their spouses/partners. The successful candidate will be required to give up any conflicting interests and his/her other business and financial interests may be published.

 

Political Activity

Given the need for the Charity Commission to be, and to be seen to be, impartial and independent in its regulation of charities, engagement in significant political activity (holding office, public speaking, making a recordable donation or candidature for election) is likely to prove a significant conflict of interest for candidates applying for this role.

 

To allow the panel to explore conflicts of interest, and in particular political activity, with the candidates in the context of their ability to perform in the role, candidates should declare any significant political activity which they have undertaken in the last five years. This information will only be provided to the panel for those applicants selected for interview.

 

Details of the successful candidates declared political activity will be published when the appointment is announced.

 

How to Apply

To apply, please send:

  • A CV of no more than two sides of A4; this should provide details of your education and qualifications, employment history, directorships, membership of professional bodies and details of any publications or awards.
  • A supporting statement of not more than two sides of A4, setting out how you meet the criteria – please make sure you refer to the contents of this document;
  • The Conflicts of Interest Form and the Diversity monitoring form. The Diversity Form will be kept separately from your application and Conflicts of Interest Form, and will not be seen by the selection panel in order to meet the Cabinet Office’s Governance Code on Public Appointments.

Completed applications should be sent to: publicappointments@culture.gov.uk , please put ‘Charity Commission’ in the subject title.

Alternatively, they can be posted to Public Appointments Team, 100 Parliament Street, London, SW1A 2BQ.

Closing Date: 

Applications should arrive no later than 10AM on 19 June 2019. Please note that applications after this time will not be considered.

Please note DCMS does not reimburse travel expenses for attendance at interview. 

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