Reflecting on the last two years of Reed’s Shadow Board
In January 2022, we started a new initiative with the creation of our Reed internal Shadow Board. This specially selected group of co-members (our term for employees) have gone on to operate under or ‘shadowed’ the formal board at Reed, allowing the board to leverage diverse insights from a group of talented individuals, working day to day on the ‘coal face’. We want our co-members to feel seen and heard which is why our Global Managing Director, Ian Nicholas and Senior Leadership Team have been keen to get opinions from different areas of the business. We are transparent and we value our co-members’ opinions.
Our shadow board have had two key roles:
- To review proposed changes from the board around policy and process.
- To work on challenges set by the board, around transformation of our business model, processes, and culture.
We have spoken to previous committee members of the Shadow Board and we found it extremely valuable in keeping up with changing market conditions, taking account of what our co-members and customers are saying.
We asked them what changes have been made a result of having this board in place and spoken to newer committee members on what changes they would like to see.
We caught up with our Global MD, Ian Nicholas who has found the Shadow Board meeting invaluable.
“The best compliment that I can give to the shadow board is that their insights have led to us tweaking the vast majority of business interventions that we have sought their feedback on. There’s nothing that they have disagreed with yet, but there is plenty that we have amended and I believe that all implementations have been better for their input – whether that be the introduction of Digital ETW Checks and AssuredID, or changes to the KPIs that we measure our network business with.”
Ian Nicholas, Global Managing Director
Here’s what IT Product Owner, Cara Marks who was on the first board committee in 2022 had to say about what changes have come from the Shadow Board:
“During my time on the shadow board we discussed many projects that are now live and successfully running across a broad range of domains from Screening projects such as Digital ID checks, to HR policies such as Dynamic Working, through to Operational change such as managing the impact of new Terms of Business. Also, as a member of the first Shadow Board to run, I hope our feedback helped to shape and improve the process for the subsequent year and hopefully many more years to come.”
Tech Senior Practise Lead, Guy Allen was also on the first Shadow Board he recalls the impact the shadow board made on supporting our Global Managing Director: they did this by “helping Ian put the finishing touches on his FY23 Strategy; supporting on the new perm pricing options; messaging for contract pricing increase.”
We also caught up with our Education Screening Manager, Jessica Rowlands who is a new member of this year’s Shadow Board.
What changes have come from the shadow board?
“Some of the biggest changes to me have been a widening of my own perspective, as I work in Screening, I’m often not aware of some of the wider happenings in the business. The shadow board has allowed me to interact not only with people who I do not usually work with but gain a deeper understanding of challenges that they might face. This is especially useful knowledge when working with my internal clients. It has also really helped build confidence, especially around offering my own thoughts and opinions on areas outside of my world!”
“I’ll be using the knowledge and experience gained from the shadow board as tools for self-reflection especially as I grow as a manager. It has given me more perspective on higher-level business matters and highlights areas I might want to work on as I look ahead at career development.”
The shadow board has been beneficial for those on it to get a wider understanding of other departments and for co-members to have their voices heard. We can’t wait to see what they change in the next year to go to #thenextlevel!
By Natasha Chan
Attraction & Engagement Specialist