Board of Trustees September 2016

The Board met on 19 September, and an account of the discussions and outcomes is given here.


CEO Report – Update on 2016/17 - Ann Francke updated the Board on business performance in the year to date, with strong sales activity and healthy future pipeline.  The Board considered the impact on revenue budgets and targets due to internal realignment of the sales team and changes in income recognition policy, the latter as discussed with the Auditors.

There is no adverse impact on invoiced sales or cash inflows, and action is being taken to ensure that we are doing all we can to meet the no-miss revenue target of £13.3m.  One important factor is that Higher Education Partnerships are on course to achieve their aspirational invoiced sales targets across the whole financial year. 

A view is also being formulated that the income recognition policy agreed with the Auditors may be over cautious.  This will be reviewed further at the next meeting of the Finance and Audit Committee, with outcomes reported to the Board.

Proposed approach to articulating risk appetite - The Board kicked off a review of the overarching approach to identifying risk, defining an acceptable level of risk, and reflecting this within a new style risk register.  There is an agreed need for a top down approach to agreeing the major strategic risks, and a business imperative to define risk appetite.

Board and executive team members worked in small groups, reviewing and consolidating a series of risk items put forward as part of pre-meeting activity.  The headings being used are strategic growth, operational, reputational and financial.

In reporting back, comments were made on points of principle including (a) the need for braver decision making; (b) capitalising swiftly on market opportunities as they arise and (c) the need to future proof systems and infrastructure, to ensure that they continue to evolve and are fit for purpose for an organisation with expanded reach and ambition.

Next steps are:
• further work by the Board and Executive Leadership team, via email, to write up and refine risk items and tighten the underpinning descriptors
• discussion at the November Board meeting to finalise the list of risks and determine the appetite position, to be factored into the 2017/18 business planning process
• a final task of risk aggregation, to assess overall risk tolerance and ensure that this was not set at too high a level in overall terms.

Annual Statements of Compliance - Nigel Spencer, Chair of Regulation Compliance Committee, provided the Board with an update on the Committee’s work and, in particular, Statements of Compliance required to be submitted to Regulators in England, Wales and Northern Ireland by the end of September 2016.

The background provided to the Board is that revised Regulatory Framework for Qualifications (RQF) introduced by Ofqual, has replaced the Qualifications Credit Framework (QCF); the latter having formed the basis on which Institute qualifications were designed and developed.  An action plan is therefore in place for qualifications review and development, aiming to meet the deadline of December 2017.  It was agreed that there is a wider Institute imperative to review qualifications content, to ensure degree of fit with HE and Apprenticeship strategies.

The expert work of Regulation Compliance Committee was duly recognised.

‘Chartered Management Consultant’ (ChMC) – Update and Scenario Planning - Martin Cook, Trustee lead on this project, updated the Board on the prospect of Privy Council approval for ‘Chartered Management Consultant’ being finally confirmed in the coming weeks.  On this basis, the joint CMI/IC/MCA Steering Board has met to assess the next steps and to gauge the prospects for successful roll out of the new award.  Success hinges on the appetite and interest within the large consultancy firms and systems integrators in engineering and technology.  The best case scenario will be for these firms to embrace the new award, map it against, and link it to, their existing consultancy training programmes, and come to a financial arrangement whereby they would cover the assessment and subscription fees for their Consultants to attain the award and become Institute members.

A further important element is development of a ‘professional home’ for Consultants within the Institute, with a strong programme of continuing development and thought leadership activity.

The Board approved an initial tranche of investment for ChMC development over the next 6 months, for project management and further market analysis, including discussions with the large firms, subject to Privy Council approval being obtained.  A more detailed overview of the programme plan and trigger points for development will be submitted to the Board at its November 2016 or February 2017 meeting.

WiM Developments - The Board noted positive moves to reinvigorate the Women in Management Network, under the name of ‘CMI Women’, led by its Advisory Committee. A relaunch event is planned for 23 November 2016.

Heather Melville CCMI, Director for Strategic Partnerships and Head of Business Inclusion Initiatives at RBS, was appointed to the Board and as Chair of the Advisory Committee for ‘CMI Women’;

Plans for the 23 November launch event will be communicated shortly.

Governance update and AGM outcomes - The Board noted that, with member approval having been given at the AGM to the Special Resolution on Board composition and terms of office, subject to Privy Council approval, formal proposals will now be developed to amend Board Regulations governing the number of elected Trustees.  Transitional arrangements will be implemented by 31 March 2017.

Finance report to 31 July 2016
- This shows shortfall in income in the short term, due to the prudent income recognition policy, offset by underspend on overhead costs.  Net contribution for the year to date is in line with budget and reserves ahead of target.

Board strategy review meeting – On 25 November, the Board will meet for a whole day session for its strategy review, as part of development of the 2017/18 business plan.