Ten case studies to capture board experiences

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A new report has launched today, aimed at improving board diversity within the housing and not-for-profit sector.

ema consultancy, one of the sector’s longest-standing HR and recruitment specialists, has captured the stories of ten female board members, with a view to encouraging candidates from a variety of backgrounds to apply for governance roles.

Recent research has shown a lack of representation of the nine equality act protected characteristics within housing boards, with women holding only 37% of posts. Only 4.5% of board members reported themselves as having a disability and just 6.8% of board members identified as BME.

Earlier this year ema consultancy held an event to discuss the barriers to women seeking to becoming board members. Two key issues identified by a range of sector leaders included a lack of visibility of ‘people like them’ and a need for more sharing of how women applied and secured a board role.

The report today responds to that, sharing the stories of ten women from a range of commercial and public sector roles who all have taken different routes to secure board positions.

Anne Elliott, managing director of ema consultancy, said: “Our research in 2018 revealed a lack of diversity at board level and alongside our core recruitment and search work, we wanted to do more to encourage more candidates.

We chose women as our first focus, but that in no way should detract from the equal importance of better representation across all characteristics. Its production is just one of the nine pledges ema consultancy has made for the next year; investing our time for free to help improve sector equality.

“Our next initiative will see us run a workshop and linked support package for those considering a board role. Widening the application pool will help ensure more effective boards.

“Thank you to everyone who gave up their time to share their story and contribute to this document.”

Potential board members who would like to speak to someone featured in the report or wanting an informal chat with ema’s expert team as to how and whether they should apply for a board member vacancy, can email Anne at anne.elliott@emaconsultancy.org.uk

The full report and latest ema executive and non-executive vacancies can be found at  www.emaconsultancy.org.uk


Anne Elliot EMA Consultancy

Anne Elliott

Managing Director

01926 887272