Key findings

Harvey Nash / Alumni Board Report 2016/17

1. DIGITISATION

Digitisation affects everything within the organisation: from operational efficiencies and revenue generation, to increasing the risks of cyber and security breaches. If you are not a disruptor then you are, eventually, going to be disrupted.

BOARDROOM ACTIONS:

- Conduct regular competitor analyses
- Actively seek expert external advice
- Upskill existing board members

2. DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

Diversity and inclusion are becoming less about under-represented groups on the board and more about business effectiveness. An effective board requires new perspectives and skills, and board members should expect to be increasingly challenged in their thinking.

BOARDROOM ACTIONS:

- Assess your existing board capabilities
- Inject new skills and experience
- Proactively manage the diversity

3. IMPACT ON BROADER SOCIETY

Businesses need to make a fair financial return on their activities, but they also have a responsibility to drive positive social outcomes, including wealth creation, societal wellbeing and benefit, as a by-product of their activities.

BOARDROOM ACTIONS:

- Reflect ethics in the boardroom
- Assess your impact
- Embed ‘good business’ throughout your organisation

4. BOARD EFFECTIVENESS

The most effective boards may or may not follow every recommendation in the various codes of conduct, but what distinguishes outstanding boards is ensuring broad participation, robust decision-making processes and clarity of purpose.

BOARDROOM ACTIONS:

- Undertake regular, rigorous board evaluations
- Run formal induction programmes
- Commit to best practice