Sallie Pilot leads the debate at the 4th ICSA Conference
This year’s ICSA Corporate Governance Conference explored the growing number of proposed changes on the horizon for Corporate Governance and reflected on the challenging role of the Company Secretary in today’s uncertain and volatile economic climate.
Sallie Pilot, Director of Research & Strategy at Black Sun together with Sean O’Hare, PwC and James Roberts, BDO took to the stage to kick off the first panellist session of the morning, ‘Under Construction’ where they examined the ever growing list of proposed changes and consultations in the Corporate Governance landscape and sought to answer the fundamental question of what these changes actually mean for the role of the Company Secretary and companies as a whole. The session touched on a wide range of topics from the FRC’s ‘Effective Company Stewardship Code' to BIS’s most recent consultation on ‘Enhanced Shareholder Voting Rights’ right through to BIS's earlier consultation on ‘The Future of Narrative Reporting’ and beyond. With so many changes afoot, Sallie urged the delegates 'to use reporting as an opportunity rather than an obligation' and suggested ways in which companies could become more proactive in engaging with their stakeholders and highlighted the importance of the Annual Report in doing so. She also evidenced the huge transformation in Corporate Governance over the past few years and recalled that just over seven years ago, 50% of FTSE 100’s had corporate governance sections under five pages, a figure that has almost certainly doubled over the years for the majority of companies.
The conference also addressed other pressing topics around boardroom diversity, stewardship, the role of the board and the more practical aspects of the Company Secretary's role such as risk management and how to cut the clutter when it comes to preparing board packs. With the momentum for change and the focus on increased transparency growing at a rapid pace year on year, the ICSA Corporate Governance Conference offers an excellent opportunity to reflect on the increasing need for improved Corporate Governance in the UK and by doing so not only identifies the key drivers for future change but more importantly outlines the more practical ways in which companies can start getting to grips with the changes ahead and continue their own journey towards even greater accountability and transparency.
For further information please see ICSA Corporate Governance Conference