Board Member

Bernicia Group Role Description

Title: Board Member (Two positions available)

Report to: Chair

Date: May 2019


£5,000 per annum plus £500 travel allowance

Event Frequency Hours
Board Meetings (2 hours + 2 hours prep) 6 per annum 24
Strategy Days (Full working day + 2 hours prep) 2 per annum 16
Committee Meetings (2 hours + 2 hours prep) 4 per annum 16
Training and Conferences (Full working day) Ad hoc (1 is usual per annum) 8
Appraisal (up to 2 hours) Annually 2
Other duties, additional meetings, phone calls and requests (unlikely to exceed 4 hours) Ad hoc 4

Please note that an initial appointment is for a term of 3 years. Members may not serve any longer than 9 years with annual appointments being made beyond any second three year term. All appointments are subject to annual review at appraisal and any review of board composition requirements in line with the corporate strategy.

Role Purpose

To act as an accountable Member of the Group’s Board.

  • The main role of the Board Member is to direct the affairs of the Association in accordance with its objectives and to determine strategic direction and policies. The implementation of the Board’s policies is delegated to the executive.
  • Board Members have responsibility for ensuring the management control, accountability and good conduct of Bernicia.
  • A Board Member should be ready to challenge information that is presented to them in a constructive and meaningful way, seeking to ensure that best resolution for Bernicia.
  • The full responsibilities of Members of the Bernicia Group board are set out in the signed Agreement For Services relevant to these posts. Members are expected to be aware of the requirements of the Code of Governance adopted by Bernicia, promote Bernicia’s vision and values, and adhere to its Code of Conduct (Standards of Behaviour).

Key Responsibilities

To ensure compliance with the values, objectives and standards of the Group by:

  • Establishing and ensuring compliance with Group policies, covering all legal, regulatory and good practice requirements and ensuring the Board, as a minimum, undertakes the essential functions as set out in the Code of Governance (part C).
  • Supporting the Board to set the annual and longer term objectives of the Group and to determine its vision, mission and values.
  • Enabling the Group to set and oversee the achievement of those objectives through appropriate delegated authorities, operational procedures and the employment of staff with appropriate skills.
  • Measure and review the performance of the Group and its subsidiary companies.
  • To review the activities of the Group from time to time and decide on changes if appropriate or advisable in the interest of the Group.
  • To exercise sound financial management and maintain financial viability whilst meeting the Group’s objectives.
  • To avoid financial risk and protect the public funds invested in the Group.
  • To ensure that the interest and needs of the Group’s tenants are considered in all matters.
  • To ensure that the Group’s properties are developed to a high standard and are kept in good repair.
  • To be an excellent employer.
  • To promote the accountability of the Group through openness and contact with communities, representative bodies and strategic authorities.
  • To attend regularly and contribute to Board meetings and to review regularly the performance of the Board to ensure, as a Group, it has the capacity and commitment to understand and control the activities of the Group.
  • To ensure that Board meetings are suitably documented, held at reasonable intervals and are effective.
  • From time to time to attend functions and other meetings in the best interest of the Group.
  • To attend appropriate appraisal, training and development events.
  • To be responsible for the recruitment and appointment (and, if necessary, dismissal) of the Chief Executive and determining the appropriate level of remuneration.
  • Board Members must satisfy themselves that the Group and any subsidiary’s affairs are conducted lawfully and in accordance with generally accepted terms of performance and propriety.

Specific Duties

  • Work with other board members and the Executive team to ensure that working relationships maintained and enhanced.
  • Demonstrate self-motivation, seeking out information and asking for training where required.
  • Prepare adequately for meetings by reading and assessing all relevant papers and reports.
  • Prepare adequately for training sessions and other events.
  • Pay particular attention to strategic and creative thinking when the Group is formulating policy.
  • To conduct oneself in debates in a proper, respectful manner, addressing all points, avoiding irrelevancies and making decisions on complex matters.
  • Use your skills, experience and time to help the Board to reach good decisions.
  • Serve on appropriate Board Committees and/or subsidiaries.
  • When necessary attend various events on behalf of the Group.

The post-holder must carry out his or her duties with full regard to the Bernicia’s Equal Opportunities policy. The post-holder must at all times comply with the Health and Safety policy and procedure and must draw to their manager’s attention any unsafe working practice/conditions.

Person Specification

Criteria Essential or Desireable
Awareness of the responsibility of Board members to demonstrate leadership E
Actively participates in meetings with clear and focused contributions on key issues and priorities. Sticks to the point and does not waste discussion time E
Ability to communicate and work effectively E
Show interest in the ideas, solutions and alternatives proposed E
Understands tenant issues and the need to ensure that the customers’ perspective is considered in reaching decisions E
Recognises the need to achieve a balance between creativity and diligent, through examination of the alternatives E
Demonstrates integrity and is willing to accept responsibility for decisions taken by the Board E
Ability to promote, by example, the values of Bernicia E
Skills and Experience
Ability to evaluate and analyse problems D
Some knowledge of business practice D
Willingness to learn D
Leading and Motivating
Willingness to consider the ‘usual’ and ‘unconventional’ and challenge the status quo D
Encourages others to challenge point of view D
Effective Decision Making
Awareness of the long term strategic direction of Bernicia D
Awareness of the limits of authority in decision making and recognition of the likely impact of decisions D
Ability to deal with a combination of strategic and practical problems D
Contributing in Meetings
Influences others through persuasive discussion. Attempts to achieve consensus solutions D
Shares own knowledge and experience. Listens to the point of view of others E
Shows willingness to attend all Board and committee meetings and is fully briefed and prepared for all meetings E
Business, Financial and Community Awareness
Use of Information – is conscious of the need to have reliable information, in sufficient detail, on which to make decisions E
Financial – has basic financial knowledge and is willing to contribute to taking financial decisions D
Community Awareness – has an understanding of the social and economic issues pertaining in the areas in which Bernicia operates D
Risk Acceptance – is aware of the need for risk management policies and is willing to consider taking action that involves calculated risk D
Business Practice – has some awareness of business practice D
Monitor Overall Business Performance – able to monitor performance in respect of plans/controls D
Governance – has an understanding of Bernicia’s Rules, Standing Orders and good governance D
Equality & Diversity – is aware of the impact of equality and diversity issues on the organisation D
Personal Attributes
Motivation and Drive – inspires others to achieve by showing commitment, enthusiasm,encouragement and support D
Presence – makes a strong positive impression on first meeting and is able to represent the Group with its stakeholders, customers and lenders D
Persuasiveness – persuades others to give their agreement and commitment and in the face of conflict uses personal influence to achieve consensus or agreement D
Tenacity – stays with a position or plan of action until the desired objectives are achieved or require adaptation D


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