Ensuring that there is an effective agency induction programme and a programme of ongoing development for boards is a very important goal for the Ministry. MCH sees this as very much a partnership involving the entity, the Ministry and other key providers.
As a general observation, members appointed to a Crown board often have a strong knowledge of the sector, or have considerable governance experience or have a good understanding of the Crown/public sectors. It is only seldom that appointees have considerable experience in all three areas. A comprehensive induction programme helps to balance this.
The entity’s role
The chair of a board (or, at their request the CEO) usually oversees an induction programme for new members. This should include new members being briefed on:
- current issues affecting the entity;
- recent financial statements, board reports and minutes;
- of the entity, the strategic direction of the organisation and housekeeping matters (e.g. an organisational chart and key contact details for board members and key staff);
- Board policies;
- the board’s work plan; and
- a list of terms used by the entity and common in reports to the board.
Meetings for new board members should also be organised with the chair and the chief executive. Each entity should have a regularly updated induction pack.
The Ministry’s role
The Ministry has a strong commitment to supporting newly appointed members. The Ministry runs a series of new member workshops and has an objective of each new member being able to participate in a workshop within six months of their appointment. The workshops have an emphasis on applying best practice governance principles to the realities of Crown governance in our sector.
The Ministry’s commitment to ongoing support includes:
- regular workshops for boards and board members;
- a regularly updated Governance e-Manual; and
- memoranda and updates on relevant governance topics.
- SSC’s guideline and commentary on inductions is at: www.ssc.govt.nz/sites/all/files/induction-module1-updated-june09.ppt
- The Ministry of Health (NZ) has published a governance guide for board members of Primary Health Organisations and induction and training for members is covered in Chapter 2.6 at: www.health.govt.nz/publication/resource-preparation-governance-manuals-guidance-district-health-boards
Updated on 7th October 2019