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Volunteer Office Holder - England - Regional Policy Representative

Role Description

The Context

Each region in England will have in place a Policy Representative, who will be appointed by the Policy Director, after consulting with the Board of Directors. Any eligible member can nominate themselves for the role, by completing and returning the self-nomination form. They can also attach supportive information outlining why they consider that they would be the best nominee for the role. Appointments will aim to be made by 31 December 2017 to commence 01 January 2018, and the term of office is 1 year.

The Role

The Policy Representatives will have a seat on the English Policy Committee and will be the formal link between National Policy and local activity. Although the regional representative will have a responsibility to faithfully represent the views of members in their region, their primary duty is to FSB as a whole. They must exercise their responsibilities in what the Policy Director considers to be the best interests of FSB.

The Task

It is recognised that the members who volunteer for Regional Policy Representative roles have their own businesses to run and have a limited amount of time available for FSB activity. For this reason volunteers are supported by FSB field staff. The key areas where your experience would be utilised would be as below:

  • To act as the FSB’s principal contact with external stakeholders in the region including MPs, Council Leaders, LEP Chairs and elected Mayors.
  • To gather intelligence on emerging changes in policies of key regional stakeholders and the key decision makers, to feed into English Policy Committee.
  • To be the primary conduit between individual members or groups of members from their region, to the Region Group and the English Policy Committee.
  • To participate in national policy discussions via the English Policy Committee, and their promotion at region level.
  • Where issues may cross over region boundaries, to co-ordinate together for the interest of FSB.
  • To support UK and England campaigns within the region.
  • To attend meetings of the English Policy Committee and to report to the Region Chair a summary of the current policy activities in the region.
  • To understand relevant FSB policy, talking to the Policy Portfolio Holders as well as Special Interest Group leads and the Westminster Office where necessary.
  • To disseminate national policy information within the region (published via official FSB policy reports and other information from the English Policy Committee) and provide the conduit back to the English Policy Committee on small business issues within their region.
  • To ensure, as far as possible, that policy pronouncements in the region comply with agreed FSB national policy positions.
  • To lead on local correspondence to key figures, such as MPs, MEPs, elected Mayors, LEP Chairs and Council Leaders, in line with the Communications and Correspondence Protocol set out in the attached Appendix.  National correspondence to MPs remains the responsibility of the Westminster Office public affairs team.
  • To liaise with the Westminster Office press team in response to any media request received; and to act on their handling advice.
  • To adhere to FSB established member policy, procedures and constitution at all times.
  • To carry out tasks on behalf of the Region Group and English Policy Committee as and when agreed.
  • To attend and speak at internal and external meetings when agreed with the Policy Director.

Authority

  • The Regional Policy Representative is responsible for the proper conduct of their representative role, as the authoritative conduit between the membership and the English Policy Committee.
  • The Regional Representative is not authorised to say, nor shall they imply, that FSB funding may be available for any activities.

Internal Reporting

  • To submit reports to the English Policy Committee as agreed with the English Policy Committee or, when appropriate, the Policy Director.
  • To report to their regions the work of the English Policy Committee.
  • To notify the Policy Director, (via their PA), of any appointments to external bodies, forums and panels within their region.
  • To notify the Policy Director, (via their PA), of any intention to stand in an external election
  • To meet internal administrative requirements, including financial, contained in the  Finance Regulations or as prescribed by the Policy Director.

The Person 

This is a volunteer role and requires you to be a fully paid up member of FSB. We do welcome new members to stand for this representative role, but if non-members wish to be considered they will need to join as a member first. In order to participate fully in local and national policy discussions you will need to have an active interest & knowledge of policy issues relevant to small businesses. You will also need to have an existing network of contacts to decision makers in the relevant stakeholder organisations, and be able to demonstrate good communication/advocacy skills.

Appointment:

  • The Regional Policy Representative Nomination form and any attached supportive information will be considered by the Policy Director and, at his absolute discretion, appointed.  The Policy Director’s decision shall be final and there is no appeal.
  • All appointments are subject to the consultation of the Board of Directors.
  • Where the Policy Director is unable to appoint an Office Holder the full nomination process can be repeated.
  • In the event that there is no nomination from a region with the necessary eligibility or qualifications, dispensation may be granted by the Policy Director for a member from another region for the remainder of that term.

Payment and Expenses

The detailed arrangements will be confirmed in due course