Register provides advice on non-executive directors

A
new national register has been launched to provide employers with independent,
expert advice on appointing non-executive directors.

The
register was launched at an Institute of Directors conference on the changing
role of non-executives following the Higgs Review.

The
review of non-executive directors by former investment banker Derek Higgs
recommended significant changes to recruitment and training to improve the
diversity and accountability of these individuals.

Betty
Thayer, chief executive of exec-appointments.com, told delegates the aim of the
register was to provide up-to-date information about non-executive vacancies,
guidance on how to find the right non-executive as well as information on
training courses available.

She
told the conference that fulfilling Higgs’ recommendations would mean three
times the existing number of non-executives would be needed.

The
Higgs Review found that almost half of non-exec posts were recruited through
personal contacts, only four per cent had a formal interview and just one per
cent obtained their job through answering an advertisement.

Thayer
urged employers to cast as wide a net as possible to identify more female
candidates and applicants from ethnic backgrounds so that company boards
reflect the diversity of their workforces.

“Diversity
is a big topic at the moment. Finding qualified, diverse candidates can take a
long time because there are just not 
many out there. But it is worthwhile, particularly if you look at the
composition of your company," she said.

The
register will be available through www.exec-appointments.com from 15 April.

By Ben Willmott

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