UK Shared Business Services Ltd, Chair

Body: UK Shared Business Services
Appointing Department: Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Charity & Public Sector
Location: London; Swindon; virtual for foreseeable future
Skills required: Audit and Risk, Change Management, IT / Digital, Transformation
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £575 per day to attend Board meetings, training events, Chair events etc. (to a maximum of 36 days per annum (full time equivalent £149,500 per annum) paid monthly in arrears through PAYE. Reasonable travel and subsistence costs incurred in the line of UK SBS business will be reimbursed.
Time Requirements: Maximum of 36 days per annum

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched


  • Closed for Applications


  • Panel Sift

    w/c 25/1/2020

  • Final Interview Date

    w/c 22/2/2020

  • Announcement

    April/May 2020


Assessment Panel

Vacancy Description

The Organisation:

UK Shared Business Services Ltd (UK SBS) is a non-profit making company limited by shares.  It was established in 2007 by the UK Research Councils as part of a drive for greater value for money. The Company provides HR & Payroll, Finance, Procurement and IT services to its owners the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and other public sector clients. It is recognised by the Cabinet Office as a government shared service provider and forms part of the  Shared Service Strategy for Government.  The current customers have made clear their commitment to the future of the Company.

The unique public sector owner/client relationship allows for a partnered approach to maximise the benefit of shared services. To deliver this potential, a multi-year programme is underway to deliver significant end-to-end process and organisational transformation partly enabled through the implementation of a new cloud Enterprise Resource Platform and Human Resource Management platform to its existing customers.  Building on the success of that transformation, there will be many opportunities to develop the customer base and shared service offerings across the wider central public sector.

This is an exciting, interesting and challenging time for UK SBS; the newly appointed Chair will provide strong leadership to guide the Company through this transformation, delivering leading-edge shared services to multiple clients at the best value and providing our end-users with the high-quality user experience they have become accustomed to in the digital age.

 The Role:

We are looking to appoint a new Chair of UK SBS who will be responsible for:


·        Ensuring that the Board develops, provides guidance and approves and agrees the Company’s strategy and business plan with the owners, providing clear direction for the Company.

·        Providing effective leadership to the Company and the Board, ensuring that Non-Executive Directors fulfil their duties and responsibilities for the proper governance of the Company.

·        Regularly reviewing the strategic risks to the Company and ensuring that robust and appropriate risk management frameworks and processes are in place (receiving assurance from the Audit Committee where appropriate).

Board Leadership and Management

·        Providing effective chairmanship for UK SBS, leading the Board to deliver their responsibilities, requiring full engagement in the delivery of the agreed strategy from all members.

·        Ensuring there is appropriate delegation of authority from the Board to the UK SBS Chief Executive and Executive Management Team.

·        Ensuring that the Board receives accurate, timely and clear information, including on the Company’s financial and service performance, to enable the Board to take sound decisions, support the delivery of the agreed strategy and promote the success of the Company.

·        Managing the Board to allow time for discussion of complex, critical or contentious issues, ensuring and encouraging constructive challenge from all directors.

·        Monitoring that decisions are implemented.

Relationship with the Chief Executive and Shareholders

·        Developing and maintaining effective relationships and communications with senior executive representatives of the owners, ensuring an understanding of their strategy, priorities, issues and concerns.

·        Building a strong, effective and constructive working relationship with the Chief Executive, ensuring he is held to account for achieving agreed strategic objectives, whilst maintaining a supportive relationship in which to speak openly about concerns, worries and challenges.

Compliance and Governance

·        Ensuring that the Company operates within its constitution and relevant public sector regulations.

·        Ensuring the Board fulfils its duties in relation to sound financial health and satisfies itself that appropriate financial controls, delegations and accountability are in place.

·        Participating in the appointment of the Chief Executive, Non-Executive Directors and members of the Executive team, as appropriate.

·        Owning and undertaking the performance evaluation of the Board, its committees and individual directors.

·        Upholding the values of the Company by example and ensuring that the organisation promotes equality, diversity and inclusion for all its customers, employees and other stakeholders.

Additional Information:

The above list is indicative and not exhaustive. The Chair will be expected to perform all such additional duties as are reasonably commensurate with the role.

Person Specification

Essential criteria:

  • Previous experience as a board director, or equivalent, with a proven track record of fostering a collaborative team environment and providing strong leadership in times of significant change and transformation.
  • Strong business and financial acumen gained within a large and complex corporate environment.
  • A good knowledge, and previous experience, of working with shared services, in a digital and technological environment.
  • Politically astute, with strong influencing and exceptional stakeholder management skills particularly at Director/Executive level.
  • An understanding of complex strategic issues and the ability to quickly analyse and resolve difficult problems.

Desirable criteria:

  • Experience of working with or within the public sector.

The Chair’s direct reports are the Chief Executive and Company Secretary (on governance matters only).

Additional Information

Board meetings and Chair events are primarily held in Swindon and London.

The successful candidate will be appointed for a single term of three years, subject to annual review and could be reappointed for a further term of four years.

The post-holder must demonstrate a high standard of corporate and personal conduct and should particularly note the requirement to declare any conflict of interest that arises in the course of the office’s operations and the need to declare any relevant business interests, positions of authority or other connections with commercial, public or voluntary bodies.

UK SBS is committed to providing equal opportunities for all, irrespective of race, age, disability, gender, marital status, religion, sexual orientation, transgender and working patterns and to the principle of appointing on merit with independent assessments, openness and transparency of process.

How to Apply

Please tailor your application to show how you meet the criteria listed. You should set out in your suitability for the role and how you meet the essential and desirable criteria set out in the person specification. 

If you are shortlisted, due diligence will be carried out and your referees are likely to be contacted. 

You will be asked to prepare some identification documents if you are invited to an interview – further information will be provided closer to the time. 

Interviews are likely to be held remotely through Microsoft Teams. 

For us to progress your application, we ask you to complete a diversity monitoring form, which can be found here

You must also submit both of the following documents to, with the subject ‘UK SBS, Chair’, before 11pm on 3 January 2021:

  • a curriculum vitae; and
  • a supporting statement

If you do not submit both a curriculum vitae and a supporting statement by 11pm on 3 January 2021, your application will not be progressed any further. Late applications will not be accepted.

Your curriculum vitaeand supporting statement must each be no longer than two pages in length. If you submit documents which are longer than two pages, any information not contained within the first two pages of each document will be disregarded and will not be seen by the assessment panel.

If you experience problems accessing or completing the diversity monitoring form or if you have any questions about the application process, please contact Joshua Sweet at

UKSBS Chair - Candidate Pack

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

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