Board Intelligence, with the support of ICSA: The Governance Institute, is developing specialist guidance on how to ensure that board packs are fit for purpose, providing the information that boards and governing bodies need in a clear and timely manner while not taking a disproportionate amount of time to produce.
This follows on from research we conducted jointly with ICSA, which found that organisations of all sizes and sectors had concerns about the quality of their board packs — considering them to be too long, too operational and backward-looking — and the amount of time taken to produce them.
The guidance will be issued in July, together with a cost calculator and an evaluation tool to help organisations assess their own board packs. It will cover all aspects of producing and preparing board packs, including:
- Planning — agreeing the agenda, identifying the information the board needs
- Commissioning — setting deadlines, specifying content and format, briefing authors
- Writing — making sure the issues and decisions needed are set out clearly
- Reviewing — agreeing appropriate sign-off procedures
- Collating and distributing — timing, format, security
We hope the guidance will be of use to boards, management and governance professionals in all organisations. To make sure that happens, we want to draw on the experience of those involved in producing board packs. We intend to include in the guidance examples of innovation and changes that you have introduced that have improved either the content of the pack or the process by which it is produced, along with any other ‘handy hints’ you might have.
If you are able to help, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org by 30 April 2018 and let us know about:
- Any action that you have taken to improve the quality of your board papers;
- Any action that you have taken to improve the efficiency of the process of preparing or distributing the board pack; and
- Who within the organisation was involved in implementing these improvements.