Defence Business Services Board Chair

Body: DBS
Appointing Department: Ministry of Defence
Sector: Defence
Location: All meetings are currently being held virtually. However post-Covid there will be occasional travel to Bristol, London and other DBS sites as required.
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Change Management, IT / Digital, Major Projects, Transformation
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £1,000 per day
Time Requirements: There is a time commitment of up to 20 days per year.

This is not a ministerial appointment.

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications

    14/12/2020 at 12:00

  • Panel Sift


  • Final Interview Date


  • Announcement



Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

The DBS Board provides strategic direction and holds the DBS executive to account on behalf of the MoD Chief Operating Officer for the efficient and effective delivery of its strategic objectives.  It provides an important oversight and assurance role to ensure that an effective framework for corporate governance is in place within DBS, ensuring that the Board is supported by effective and properly constituted sub-committees (e.g. Security, and Audit, Risk & Assurance). All business cases that exceed the Chief Executive’s financial delegation are subject to consultation and agreement by the DBS Corporate Board.


The Board’s functions specifically include:

  • On behalf of the Sponsor, act as the primary corporate oversight body for DBS, providing assurance to the Sponsor and wider Department that there is:
  • Clarity on DBS current and future outputs;
  • A robust strategy for development/delivery of future DBS outputs;
  • A 5-year DBS Corporate Plan and associated strategic KPIs, endorsed by the Board;
  • A 1-year DBS Business Plan, endorsed by the Board;
  • Regular top-level oversight of the implementation of the corporate/business plans;
  • Properly assured business controls and risk management.


  • On behalf of the DBS Chief Executive and Executive team, provide:
  • Challenge, support and advice on activities and proposals brought by the Executive team, working in partnership with DBS for the benefit of DBS and wider Defence;
  • Championing and support for DBS’s purpose and objectives across Defence.

As DBS is legally part of MOD, the DBS Board is not a fiduciary board. However, it acts as if the Board were fiduciary to the fullest possible degree.

Person Specification

The Board Chair is accountable to the MoD Chief Operating Officer for managing the DBS Board and ensuring its effectiveness in all aspects of its role. The successful candidate will be expected to work closely with senior MoD officials, including the MoD COO, with the CEO and leadership team of DBS, and with the Heads of Enabling Organisations Sponsorship, who act as the Sponsorship Non-Executive Director on the DBS Board.


The main responsibilities of the Board Chair will involve:

  • Setting the strategic direction of the Board and running it to oversee and support DBS corporate performance;
  • Considering endorsement of DBS’s corporate plans, making recommendations to the MoD COO on approving those plans whilst holding the DBS senior leadership team to account against delivery of those plans;
  • Shaping DBS’s future vision and influencing design and delivery of its transformation programme;
  • Championing the value and benefits of DBS within wider Defence;
  • Ensuring there is a culture of transparency and collaboration between DBS and its Defence stakeholders and that DBS plans align with customer priorities and needs;
  • Shaping, agreeing and recruiting NEDs to the Board with the agreement of the MoD Sponsor and MoD COO, ensuring its diversity and overseeing a balance of relevant expertise and experience;
  • Conducting annual performance reviews of the DBS NEDs and ensuring the Board champions and role models the seven principles of public life;
  • Undertaking Board effectiveness reviews annually;
  • Providing advice and counsel to the DBS Chief Executive Officer, and the wider DBS senior leadership team;
  • Ensuring there are Board Terms of Reference in place and that they are consistent with the Government Code of Good Practice for Corporate Governance and code of practice for Board members;
  • Creating the conditions under which all Board Members can express their views frankly and challenge constructively, to inform effective discussion in Board meetings;
  • Managing the frequency, agenda, content and conduct of Board meetings, ensuring that systems are in place to provide Board members with accurate and timely information;
  • Ensuring that the Board is supported by effective and properly constituted sub-committees (e.g. Security, and Audit, Risk & Assurance);
  • Escalating issues and risks to the MoD Chief Operating Officer as necessar
    The successful candidate must abide by the Seven Principles of Public Life and the Code of Conduct for Board Members.Ensuring that the Board is supported by effective and properly constituted sub-committees (e.g. Security, and Audit, Risk & Assurance);Escalating issues and risks to the MoD Chief Operating Officer as necessary.

Additional Information

The appointment will be for a period of 3 years

How to Apply

If you unable to apply online please contact Defence Business Services (

Candidates should provide a CV  setting out your career history and including details of any professional qualifications. Candidates should also complete the diversity monitoring form, Expression of Interest formincluding a supporting statement explaining how you meet the essential and desirable criteria,contact details for two referees and any conflict of interest. 

Completed applications should be emailed to 

35732_DBS_CHAIR_Campaign information pack
35732_Disable Confident Scheme Declaration

This post is NOT regulated by The Commissioner for Public Appointments.

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