Case studies

Governance Evaluator

Client

Aon Hewitt partnered with the board of a leading super fund to undertake an independent governance evaluation using Aon Hewitt’s Governance Evaluator.

Challenge

The board was facing increased governance responsibilities, which included:

  • compliance with the superannuation prudential standards, including the requirement for an independent board evaluation to be performed
  • effectively managing conflicts of interest
  • the need for increased independence and diversity of views on the board
  • clarifying and defining the role of management versus Board Director responsibilities
  • increasing capabilities, knowledge and time commitment required by directors in an ever changing environment.

Solution

After defining the client’s objectives, the Aon Hewitt team utilised the approach provided by the Governance Evaluator to provide effective solutions:

  • managed a comprehensive end-to-end governance review process that took into account director availability and timing of board meetings
  • delivered an industry tailored evaluation to determine baseline governance maturity results
  • carried out confidential, face-to-face meetings with each director to understand and validate results as well as to obtain any additional feedback
  • met with the Chair to outline the aggregated results and recommendations
  • facilitated a board workshop to discuss the themes that arose and to agree a governance development action plan
  • provision of an agreed action plan in accordance with the board’s calendar of events so ongoing progress can be monitored.

Results

After implementing the Governance Evaluator’s recommendations, the results for the client were:

  • all directors were unanimously positive in their feedback that it had been a valuable development experience. They felt their opinions had been heard and they particularly appreciated the 1-on-1 interviews
  • some frustrations that were revealed with the operation of the board were addressed to drive renewed focus on strategy
  • a feedback meeting with the CEO was held which delivered desired improvements in the interaction between management and the board
  • a desire for more training and support was revealed which is now embedded into an ongoing development plan
  • a decision to undertake an annual independent assessment using the Aon Hewitt Governance Evaluator to enable continual improvement of the effectiveness of solutions and track the development of the board’s governance maturity

 
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Jennifer Dean