Finding the right Non-Executive Director (NED) or Chairman can be challenging. Most companies, having reached the decision to engage a NED look for a strong and lengthy track record in their market sector, or in one which presents good opportunity for synergy and knowledge transfer into the company. They must also strike a positive balance between fitting well with the company’s board and culture, yet also challenging the board and management on the integrity of their reporting, plans and decisions. Availability is inevitably a consideration, because Non-Executives work part-time with the company and generally will engage with a portfolio of clients for which the typical time commitment being a few days a month but flexing according to the company’s needs and evolution.
Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) and Non-Executive Chairmen (NECs) play an important role in the corporate governance of companies of all sizes. In public companies, it is recommended that a majority of board directors be non-executives, to maximise their contribution of unbiased, critical thinking to the company’s biggest decisions and obligations. Non-Executive Directors bring an independent judgement to bear on issues of strategy, performance and resources including key appointments and standards of conduct.
EO have a particular interest in helping SMEs to expand and enhance their businesses through Non-Executive engagement, where governance capability has a role to play but equally, and perhaps often more importantly, highly developed commercial and strategic acumen as well as entrepreneurial spirit underpinning a strong and proven track record of success. In this way SMEs are able to recruit Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) that ordinarily, as an executive, may have been impossible for them to attain (either in terms of attraction to the business or affordability) and this can therefore have a major impact on company direction and/or results.
In our experience, the process for identifying the right Non-Executive Director (NED) – one who will make the most significant contribution to a business – really benefits from a broad and joined-up approach that often includes a targeted search methodology, starting with a survey of the companies and environments in which prospective NEDs will have gained the most relevant experience, and approaching them directly about the possibility of joining your board. Taking on a Non-Executive Director (NED) has the potential to generate positive effects on business performance over the long term, touching many areas of the organisation. Recruitment of a Non-Executive Director (NED) – or Chairman – should certainly not be rushed but nevertheless with commitment by Executives Online and our clients an effective and rigorous process can be achieved within surprisingly short timelines.
Executives Online’s approach to Non-Executive Director (NED) and Non-Executive Chairman (NEC) recruitment deploys a unique blend of proven talent attraction methods and personal, proficient service to deliver targeted and cost-effective recruitment for your board role. We start by working with you to develop a detailed brief of your requirements, including profile, tasks, stakeholder accountabilities, company culture and Boardroom dynamics so that a good fit can be achieved. In addition to our consultants networks and database that contains a diverse and deep range of management and executive talent, we can also engage in a process of targeted headhunting to locate and secure the right individual for your needs. We will then screen and assess all candidates, conducting extensive and comprehensive interviews in person or occasionally via Skype video (typically location or timing dictated e.g. overseas), and subsequently meet with you again to present a short list of the most appropriate candidates, together with detailed interview notes per candidate.
Fundamentally the Return On Investment realised by businesses who engage Non-Executives in this way, whether as SMEs or large listed corporates, will generally far outweigh the associated costs (e.g. recruitment fees and the Non-Executive’s own fees) by many multiples. In the majority of cases these costs will be less than that of recruiting and employing a personal assistant.
See some of our successful placements of non-executive directors.