Independent Customer Services Committee Member

Bernicia Group Role Description

Title: Independent Customer Services Committee Member

Report to: Customer Services Committee Chair

Date: May 2019


£2,400 per annum.

Event Frequency Hours
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
The Board has two strategy events per year to which Independent members may be invited dependent upon the theme.

Please note that an initial appointment is for a term of 3 years. Independent committee members may not serve any longer than 6 years. 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 Independent Member of the Group’s Customer Services Committee:

  • The main role of the Member is to direct the affairs of the in accordance with the Committees’ objectives and to determine strategic direction and policies relating to Customer Services for recommendation to the Board.
  • Members of Customer Services Committee have responsibility for monitoring the front facing delivery of Bernicia in relation to the core social/affordable, landlord services.
  • A Committee Member should be ready to challenge information that is presented to them in a constructive and meaningful way, seeking to ensure the best resolution for Bernicia.
  • The full responsibilities of Committee Members of the Bernicia Group are set out in their signed Agreement For Services relevant to the post. 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

The members of the Committee will ensure compliance with the values, objectives and standards of the Group by:

  • Remaining dynamic and responsive to emerging risks and issues in relation to the core landlord service.
  • Establishing and ensuring compliance with Group policies relating to the core social/affordable landlord service, covering all legal, regulatory and good practice requirements.
  • Measure and review the performance of the Group in regard to customer services and core landlord provision.
  • To ensure that the interest and needs of the Group’s tenants are considered in all matters.
  • To promote the accountability of the Group through openness and contact with communities, representative bodies and strategic authorities.
  • To attend regularly and contribute to meetings and to review regularly the performance of the Committee to ensure, as a Group, it has the capacity and commitment to understand and control the customer facing and landlord services activities of the Group.
  • To ensure that 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.
  • 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, and refer any concerns they may have on these matters to the Board in a timely fashion.

Specific Duties

  • Work with other members and the Executive team to ensure that working relationships are 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 Committee and ultimately the Board to reach good decisions.
  • 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 Committee 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 Committee and recommended to Board E
Ability to promote, by example, the values of Bernicia E
Skills and Experience
Experience of working in a customer focussed environment E
Understanding and appreciation of the value Customer Involvement can bring to an organisation E
Experience of tenant scrutiny mechanisms and engaging tenants in participation D
Experience of managing or working within a customer involvement/scrutiny environment D
Ability to evaluate and analyse operational performance data to draw practical inferences E
Some knowledge of business practice D
Willingness to learn E
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 D
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 E
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
Commitment – to placing the tenant and customer, and their opinions at the heart of decision making E
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 Association 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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