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IOSH Council establishes new steering groups

IOSH’s Council has established four new steering groups to help the representative body fulfil its duties and function more effectively.

The steering groups will allow for more focussed discussion and in-depth consideration of relevant matters to take place in an agile and responsive manner, with substantive matters being brought back to Council to consider as a collective.

The groups – Council Effectiveness, Member Representation, Strategy and Policy, and Future of the Profession – held their first meetings in January and February and reported back on these at the full Council meeting on 22 February.

What were the updates?

The updates from each steering group gave Council an overview of their specific scope, a summary of the discussions so far and highlighted the next steps they have identified to progress work focussing on short, medium and long-term key deliverables.

In particular, having received a presentation from the Chief Executive about the draft vision, mission and values for the new IOSH strategy, the the Strategy and Policy Steering Group presented its initial feedback to Council, which was then discussed more widely by Council as a collective.

As the representative body of the IOSH membership, Council’s view will be fed back to the Board and considered before the final strategy principles are approved.

A discussion was also had about the newly launched ‘Member – Connect with Council’ sessions, which the Member Representation Steering Group will use as an opportunity to gain member insights to feed back into the governance structure as appropriate. The next session is being held on 18 March and Council would like to encourage members to attend. You can register here.

At future meetings, Council will look in more detail at some of the topics brought forward by the steering groups and collectively undertake deep dives into substantive matters that fall within the remit of Council’s role and responsibilities.

What does it mean?

Louise Hosking, IOSH President and Chair of Council, said: “The establishment of these steering groups is a positive step to help with the functionality of Council and I was delighted to hear about the progress they have made so far at our recent Council meeting.

“It was particularly important to hear from the Strategy and Policy Group on the development of the new IOSH strategy as this is the pathway to ensure that there is membership involvement in this. I’m looking forward to seeing how these groups continue to develop.”

Co-opted members

The other item for decision on the 22 February meeting agenda was a new procedure for co-opting members onto Council. This came following a decision of Council in 2021 to utilise Byelaw 15(2)(b), which allows Council to co-opt up to six people with the intention that it will add to the representative body’s expertise and experience to enhance its effectiveness.

Three of the six co-optee positions were given to the Chair of Council to support them in their year of office and the other three co-optee positions will be utilised by Council. Under the new procedure, co-optees will be recommended by the Nominations Committee, for a vote by Council and serve for a period of one year.

It is a criteria-based selection process with a number of prohibitions to provide assurance to the membership that the provision is not a way to get onto its representative body by bypassing the annual Council election.

What happens now?

Following the Council meeting, Council will be asked via its steering groups to identify any skills gaps from their current membership, considering what is needed to assist them to achieve their key deliverables. Those Council members in their second year of office will have the opportunity to put forward nominees that the Nomination Committee will assess using the identified skills gaps as a basis for the selection criteria. 

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Marcus Boocock
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