With workforce issues rising up the corporate agenda, there is a growing need for expertise around people matters on boards. Many of the challenges currently faced by organisations come down to people management, including hybrid working, closing skills gaps, talent attraction and retention, EDI and workforce mental health.
It’s therefore not surprising that CIPD research suggests an increasing openness from hiring chairs around appointing people professionals as non-executive directors.
Senior HR leaders bring expertise to boards in the following critical areas:
- succession planning
- people data
- equality, diversity and inclusion
- organisational change
- team dynamics
- general leadership and strategic accountability.
As one HR director-turned-NED explains:
"I noticed in the early years [of being a NED] that the board didn’t understand the strategic importance of the people agenda. And the HR profession suffered because of that. Now there is more recognition about the importance of the people agenda…I’m beginning to hear people say: 'I need somebody who understands how I move my people, this large, monolithic global organisation, from where it was to where I need it to be.'"
So, if you are an HR leader with aspirations to build a portfolio career of non-executive directorships, what do you need to consider and how do you position yourself for success?
We interviewed six HR leaders about their transition to non-executive director. They give advice for HR leaders on:
- what to expect from a NED position
- how to find your first NED role
- what key milestones in their careers have given them the skills they needed
- how to add value from day one when you’re in position.
Read our case studies below.
A thought leadership and podcast series exploring how responsible business and leadership have changed since the pandemic
We discuss how leading through crisis has shaped the way we address new challenges
Workplace support for survivors of domestic abuse is more likely to be in place where female leaders are in decision-making positions
This group of hospitals and community facilities developed a holistic Well Women Strategy to provide support beyond parents and carers
How the CIPD is partnering with the UK Ministry of Defence to target workforce planning capability
Supported by the Local Government Association, Leeds joined other councils in using the CIPD’s People Impact Tool to share key HR benchmark data