On appointment to the board, new directors/board members of state bodies should be provided with induction training. This should include guidance on the board member's duties and the standards of conduct to be met. The secretary of the body should provide briefing material for new directors. You can download the document Briefing for New Directors.
Each body should have a written code of business conduct for directors. The requirements of the Companies Acts that relate to the behaviour or directors should be implemented in the case of bodies, which are statutory boards, even where their legislation does not reflect these requirements.
Board members are appointed on the basis of the expertise that they are expected to bring to the body. Therefore, board members' specific roles may vary depending on the nature of the state body, their expertise and the capacity in which they have been appointed, whether as a chairperson or ordinary member. Generally a board member will be expected to
- attend board meetings on a regular basis and be well prepared by reading relevant papers in advance;
- contribute to decision-making and share responsibility for the board's decisions;
- attend training events and keep up to date with subjects relevant to the body's work;
- contribute to the work of committees that have been established by the board; and
- represent the board at meetings and events when required
Board members should be guided by corporate responsibility, confidentiality, loyalty to the organisation, "wearing the board member hat", understanding the respective roles of the executives and the board members.