Committee Reports Dec 2015

This is a summary of Committee discussions occurring in Autumn 2015:

  • Complaints and Investigations Committee
  • Board of Companions
  • IC Advisory Committee
  • Regulation Compliance Committee
  • WiM Advisory Committee
  • Finance and Audit Committee
  • Regional/Devolved Nation Advisory Committee



Investigation Panel processes – The majority of the discussion at the meeting focused on the work of the Investigation Panel.  This included:

  • A review of the IP terms of reference
  • Consideration of a skills matrix and volunteer member profile for IP members

Feedback received from IP members ahead of the meeting indicates that, discounting the area of mediation, member skill sets remain relevant and up to date.  Actions agreed include drawing up a recruitment plan, aiming to increase the core members on the Panel by at least two.


Review of Complaints Handling process - The Committee reviewed the current procedure, with particular focus on the current option for Mediation to be a means of resolving a member complaint.  It was noted that there is a single example of a mediation case being handled by the Investigation Panel, dating back a significant number of years.  At that point in time, a member of the Panel held expertise in that area.  Discussion focused on the level of expertise within the Investigation Panel, together with the risk of questions being raised as to the level of independence of the Investigation Panel should its members be engaged in a Mediation case.  There was agreement that Mediation should be removed from the Complaints Handling and Resolution Process.

Code Promotion – Code promotion is a joint effort by the Committee and the External Affairs and Insight Committee.  This was acknowledgement that the Institute website does not give due prominence to the Code, and this is a key issue to be addressed.  A further key comment made is that the annual obligation on members to re-commit to the Code on membership renewal appears to have lapsed.  This will be followed up.  Case studies, whether actual or fictitious, are seen as an important mechanism to bring the Code to life.

State of play on current investigations and next steps - Four cases are currently under investigation.  The common factor within all four is the involvement of other external parties – whether other professional bodies or other agencies.  In such cases, the approach is to liaise with these third parties, and await the outcomes of their own investigations, before proceeding with the CMI’s own investigation.

Joint meeting with Investigation Panel – Immediately following its own meeting, the CIC met with members of the Investigation Panel.  This session was aimed at reconnecting the CIC with the IP, sharing experiences, bringing members up to date on cases, and reviewing training needs.  The meeting was seen as a success and will be repeated as part of the CIC’s next meeting in February 2016.

BOARD OF COMPANIONS – 15 October 2015

Companions’ Activity July to October    2015 - The Board reviewed recruitment of Companions.  Caution about targeting candidates from the Further Education sector was recommended as well as a need to take a wider approach when considering candidates from the Health sector, extending the search into organisations other than the NHS.

Demographic data on Companions – The Board received comparative data on regional and sectoral distribution of Companions and similar data from the Office for National Statistics.  Suggestions were put forward to redress the current regional imbalance and improve recruitment of Companions from the Digital Sector.

Apprenticeships – The Committee welcomed the update on the Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship project and made the following key suggestions:

  • the adoption of a multi strand strategy, focusing first on those employers with a good track record of investing in skills and training, and using them as peers
  • a need to clarify that both school leavers and existing employees have access to the programme
  • providing the necessary level of guidance, support and encouragement to employers. To ensure the success of the initiative
  • promotional material to be simple and compelling, with a clear indication of fit  within the Higher Education qualification levels, and that this new Apprenticeship is an entirely new and different offering.


Business update - The Board was provided with a forward look into CMI strategy for the upcoming year and members agreed to conduct an interactive session at its next meeting to discuss in depth the various strategy proposals, in inform consideration by the Board of Trustees of the 2016/2017 business plan.

Vote of thanks – The Committee made a presentation to Robin Field-Smith, in recognition of his long and excellent service to the Board of Companions and for his work on the Companions’ Assessment Panel and the Ethics Research Advisory Group.




Business update – The Committee noted the key developments since the last meeting and the strategy review meeting to be held by the Board of Trustees at the end of November.  Data on the IC was presented and members requested additional IC specific information to be provided.


Chartered Management Consultant Project - The Committee welcomed progress in this project, with an implementation plan under development, to be taken forward as and when formal approval from the Privy Council for the award is forthcoming. 

IC Champions’ feedback – The Committee welcomed initiatives undertaken across the Regions and the wide support for the Chartered Management Consultant project.  The potential impact of Lancashire Local Enterprise Partnership requiring the SFEDI (Small Firms Enterprise Development Initiative) qualification to carry out work on funded projects was also considered, together with possible ways to obtain recognition of CMC and potentially ChMC awards with respect to bidding on funded projects.


IC Advisory Committee future – The Committee held an initial discussion on its longer term future, in the light of the ChMC project and new ChMC Oversight Board.  There is a need for some form of group supporting the development of the Consultancy community within CMI.  The composition of this group, frequency of meetings and its remit will be considered in due course.

ICMCI update and information - The Committee received feedback on the activities of the International Council of Management Consulting Institutes (ICMCI), and the outcomes of its International Congress and Conference held at the end of September in the Netherlands.  In particular,

  • Jeremy Webster is now elected as a Vice Chair of ICMCI for a 3 year term;
    • Two new Trustees have been appointed/elected by IC to represent the Consultancy Community on the ICMCI.  Both have been involved in the ChMC project: Keith Rushton CMC FIC - ESCIT Programme Leader at the Ministry of Defence; and Nick Warn CMC FIC, Managing Director of Keypath Ltd. 




Chair - Following his period as interim chair, Nigel Spencer chaired his first meeting as the permanent chair, following his appointment by the Board to that role.


Review Risk Register incl Learning Organisation risk rating – The following areas of risk were discussed :


  • A possible question whether CMI policy of not approving Tier 4 centres was disadvantaging learners.  It was agreed that justification for exclusion would be documented and the RCC would review this at its next meeting to give its opinion.
  • Incidents of learner authenticity/plagiarism recently found.  The possible acquisition of the software TurnItIn, to reduce these occurrences, was discussed.


Update from Regulators - Total Qualification Time (TQT) has been simplified by Ofqual to mean guided learning hours and assessment.  An action plan is being developed with the CMI Qualification Team to review qualifications with centres by Winter 2016, sufficiently ahead of the December 2017 deadline.

Update from Accreditation Auditor - An issue relating to the completeness of signed partnership agreements from Ministry of Defence or Police centres, as required by regulation, was raised.  The Committee will work with the Executive to inform Ofqual and to create an action plan.

WiM ADVISORY COMMITTEE – 3 November 2015

Current state of WiM initiatives – The Committee noted the current state of WiM initiatives, in particular the data cleansing action plan in place aimed at achieving data accuracy on WiM membership.  A further issue discussed is the need to have a clear idea on WiM strategy, focus and purposes prior to engaging with other Women’s networks.

Future direction and focus of the Committee - The Committee considered renaming of WiM, and favour the acronym of CMI-WIL (Women in Leadership).  This whole area of work will be taken forward at a Committee workshop in December.  Additional issues for consideration at that session are:

  • Brand and positioning
  • Strategy to enable women to achieve their full leadership potential
  • Segmentation of CMI’s offer against key stages of life/career cycles
  • Engaging and delivering benefits across the Regions.

Committee composition and structure – The Committee considered options to change its composition and structure in order to have an appropriate mix of members to lead and revitalise the WiM network.  A particular imperative is improved diversity, with younger candidates considered as well as male candidates.  Recruitment will be taken forward along these lines.

Working methodology – The Committee discussed its working methodology, possibly moving to shorter virtual meetings twice a year, with longer face to face meetings twice a year.  This will be discussed at December’s workshop.

WiMUK update - The Committee received a brief update on the legal dispute and considered that

a relaunch of WiM, under consistent Institute branding, was a positive step, even if this meant moving away from the current WiM name.



 New Committee Chair – Valerie Dias was welcomed to her first meeting as Chair of the Committee. 

Input into strategy planning – The Committee was updated on the current income and expenditure forecasts, and discussed these in the context of issues to be debated during the Board strategy review.  The focus of the discussion was on HE.  The Committee sought clarification, for example on the level of expectation that the full roll out of the partnership agreement with Coventry University would be seen in 2016/17 income levels; there was agreement on the need for a clear and focused international HE strategy, capitalising on the opportunities identified during the recent CEO visit.  The Committee looks forward at its next meeting to receiving a report from the Board on the strategy plans, so that it may make further input.

Finance report and guidance on reserves policy – The Committee considered the management accounts to the end of September 2015.  Questions raised focused on head count and staff costs, and any possible adverse impact of further recruitment on the budgeted net contribution.  It was agreed that statistics on staff turnover would be provided to the Committee, to clarify head count issues.

The optimal level of reserves cover was also considered.  The consensus is that, clearly, the minimum is 3 months of cover, with the perceived maximum set at 9 months.  The trigger for discussion is the point at which reserves cover moves up above the 8 month mark, and nearer to 9 months.  A strategic decision would then need to be taken on the application of those reserves.

It was noted that the full implications of revised accounting principles on free reserves (FRS102) were still awaited.  Those implications may relate principally to the explanatory text within the financial review section of the annual report.  The situation will be clearer at the point of time when the audit planning document is being considered by the Committee, ie in May 2016.

Risk management register – The Committee reviewed the register and commentary, in its revised format.  There was agreement that the new format is working well.  Comments to be brought forward to the Board were agreed and these form a separate item on the Board agenda.

Review of investment portfolio – The Committee received an updated valuation from Barclays Wealth on the investment portfolio, the aim being to consider the performance of the portfolio as currently configured, ie a Moderate Risk SAA, and to compare the level of return with the alternative configuration as a Charity SAA.  The consensus is that the current levels of return that could be achieved from the Charity SAA are insufficient to warrant a recommendation to the Board to switch the portfolio, given the increased level of volatility that comes with the Charity SAA.  The Committee will review the situation once again towards the end of 2016, with representatives from Barclays Wealth present at the meeting to provide expert advice.

Internal audit – The internal audit programme has been duly carried out and a full report and any recommendations will come to the Committee at its January 2016 meeting.

New Committee members – Noting the current vacancies on the Committee, there was discussion on the skill set and profile of new members that would add value, such as expertise in internal audit, and pensions insight.




The Regional Chairs met at the Belfry Conference Centre, the day before the Board/Committee Member Engagement day.

Succession planning for Board Chairs and members – Members welcomed the fact that the four Chair vacancies have now been filled, through the due appointment process.  The Acting Chairs of the East Midlands and Southern Boards have also been interviewed and confirmed in post as Chairs.  Inductions for new Board members will be completed by the end of November.  Those new Chairs able to attend the meeting were duly welcomed.

Awards programme – This has been a topic for discussion at recent meetings, to evaluate the recent Awards programme, establish the extent to which historical awards should continue to be made (particularly within HE); and to agree an integrated approach moving forward.  The next step is to share information on the various approaches.  For example, the Wales Board is to recognise Champions who have demonstrated ‘Excellence in Leadership and Management’.  Recipients will receive a certificate and will be mentioned in regional newsletters, culminating in an overall award ceremony at an appropriate point in the year.  Actions agreed are to share information on awards being planned around the Regions/Devolved Nations; undertaking research into awards made by peer professional bodies; ensuring that there is effective communication with the executive team, particularly on historical awards that the Boards do not wish to see continued, in order to avoid confusion and mixed messages.  The aim of this work is to achieve an overall consistency of approach, whilst allowing for Regional variations.  These further discussions will help in terms of budgeting for activities in 2016/17.

Social media policy – This policy document had been previously circulated to the Chairs.  Discussion focused on how to use social media to better effect, and to ensure that the Boards harness the most up to date media that can be used.  Chairs and Communication Champions will be sharing knowledge and expertise in this area in the coming weeks.

Member engagement strategy – The Chairs were introduced to the strategy document, due to be considered by the Trustees at its strategy day.  Discussion focused on the need to specify key success factors and KPIs.  The next step is seen as identification of ways in which the Board can support and get further involved.  The Chairs will therefore take the strategy to their respective Boards, to give context to discussions on their future plans. 

Value Proposition – The articulation of this proposition – to establish management as a ‘true profession’ – was shared with the Chairs, the aim being to allow reflection on how these messages can be used within a Regional context. 

Operating plan 2016/17 – The process and timeline for the development of operating plans for the new financial year were shared with the Chairs, as a prompt to take forward planning and budgeting discussions within the Boards.

Showcase on Board team development – Representatives from Southern Board presented their work on building a Board team, through mentoring and coaching, and competency development, focusing on what each Board member can contribute and how they can receive benefits in return in terms of their individual development.

HE Engagement – Ian Myson updated the Chairs on progress of the HE strategy, leading to a discussion on alignment between activities at the centre and the supporting activity to be provided by the Boards.  The message is to ensure that there are effective communication channels in place, ideally through bi-monthly contacts between the HE partnership team and each Board.

PR update – Having received an update on recent PR activity, the need for advance notice of marketing and PR campaigns was stressed, as well as early alerts on thought leadership themes.  This will facilitate effective planning within the Boards.