For many organisations, the Head of Corporate Services is at the centre of effective project delivery. The role is not essential but it does carry a high level of responsibility. 

So what exactly does the Head of Corporate Services do, and how is the role different from other leadership positions?

In short, the Head of Corporate Services is in charge of the parts of the company that do not generate revenue. This can involve financial governance, human resources and internal structure, among other areas.

As you can imagine, this is a complex role. If you do opt to have the position, you must be confident it is filled by a skilled, experienced manager 

What Are The Responsibilities of the Head of Corporate Services?

The responsibilities of the Head of Corporate Services are diverse and vary between organisations. The role is not a legal requirement for public or private companies in the UK so there is no specific regulation on the nature of the position. However, for companies that choose to have the role, there are some consistencies.

The Head of Corporate Services is responsible for the internal operations of the company. This involves overseeing human resources, finance, risk, legal and compliance functions. They take an administrative role in ensuring policies are effective, consistent and in-line with the intentions of the company.

In many companies, the Head of Corporate Services will also fulfil the role of the Company Secretary. This means they are responsible for maintaining legal compliance and so must be familiar with corporate law. This can be a benefit when it comes to accountability as the responsibility rests with one individual. 

The Head of Corporate Services will provide administrative support across the company. As a result, it is important they have experience in planning and implementation. They work with different departments across the company to ensure good operational management.  

When it comes to HR, the specific responsibilities of the Head of Corporate Services include managing the workforce. This can involve establishing procurement policies and setting the procedures for any workplace disputes.

They should monitor the company culture to ensure there are no outstanding issues. By improving the relationship between employees and the Board, the Head of Corporate Services should aim to enhance employee retention. This will result in a happier, more productive and more skilled workforce.

Due to the nature of this role, the Head of Corporate Services should have strong interpersonal skills. They will spend much of their time dealing with different voices and so should be able to quickly establish good working relationships.

More generally, they should have good leadership skills. It is important that they understand key issues the company faces and predict future trends. This can include prioritising which issues are most important to the organisation and communicating them with the rest of the team.

Does Your Organisation Need A Head of Corporate Services?

As mentioned, there is no legal requirement to have a Head of Corporate Services. However, there are certain functions which must still be filled within the company. The governance duties of a Company Secretary, for example, must be filled.

Equally, maintaining a clear organisational structure is crucial, whether or not you have a Head of Corporate Services. The advantage is the clear trail of accountability, while the disadvantage is the degree of responsibility placed on a single individual.

Human Resources are one of the most crucial aspects of business. Given we are facing the great resignation, this responsibility is particularly important at the current time. Maintaining good relations between the Board and the employees may decide the future of the company.

Placing someone in charge of this role should not be an afterthought to commercial ventures. Do your due diligence in deciding who would be a good fit - both in terms of their personal qualities, and in terms of their place within the structure of the organisation.

Ultimately, the choice to have a Head of Corporate Services is individual to your company. It depends entirely on the resources you have and the way you intend to distribute them.

How Can Convene Support Your Corporate Services Department?

To be a good leader, the Head of Corporate Services has to communicate with the whole team. Promoting an effective governance structure is a serious long-term commitment that requires efficient communication.

A Board Portal like Convene can improve collaboration within your company. Whatever industry you work in, our all-in-one meeting management software is designed to improve your internal processes.

From creating an agenda to establishing a strong admin trail, every step of the process should be as smooth as possible. With the right software, the complex task of governance and administration can be much easier!

If you’d like to find out more about how Convene can support your internal governance, check out our customer success stories or book a free demo today!

Lucy Palmer

Written by Lucy Palmer

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