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Directors and Corporate Governance

Business woman in a suit looking out of an office window

The outbreak and spread of coronavirus puts real pressure on all aspects of ‘business as usual’, including the functioning of our corporate governance framework. Against this extraordinary backdrop, the IoD is upholding its Royal Charter commitment to the development of the law and practice of corporate governance during coronavirus.

As the pandemic progresses, the IoD will be drawing together resources around governance, ensuring guidance is in place for directors, enabling them to make the best and most informed decisions for their businesses.

The IoD understands that directors are facing unprecedented challenges and we will be here to support you with the resources you need to help you continue to lead your organisations through this difficult time to ensure long term success and business continuity.

As a starting point, the IoD policy team have produced the following Coronavirus Checklist for Directors, designed to get you thinking about the various ways in which your business might be affected.

The corporate governance of coronavirus

We are in unchartered territory with the emergence of Covid-19 and its threat to businesses across the world. At such a pivotal and disruptive time, the IoD’s Head of Corporate Governance – Dr. Roger Barker - offers insight for board members to help guide them through this crisis with good corporate governance and strategy.

In the first article in the series, Roger covers the key issues boards must consider. The series continues with specific looks at stakeholder governanceAGMs, and banking

The European Voice of Directors - ECODA - is hosting a series of webinars throughout June to support European board members. Register via the following links:

The Global Network of Directors Institutes has also released a hub of resources designed to help business leaders navigate the coronavirus pandemic.

Insolvency

The Business Secretary has now announced that the Government will be implementing a  number of measures around insolvency that the IoD had been calling for in their discussions with Ministers and Officials in light of the current pandemic. This article from the IoD's Carum Basra - Policy Advisor, Corporate Governance - explains in more detail what this means for businesses affected by coronavirus. 

Business as Unusual

Inevitably, some of the challenges we are now facing are logistical: how can business leaders continue to make progress in the face of staggeringly different working environments and huge restrictions on movement? Slaughter and May and ICSA have issued the following guidance with the support of the Financial Reporting Council on how to handle AGMs due to take place in the coming weeks.

Front of mind for some companies, too, will be the administrative difficulties surrounding shareholder interests and their end-of-year finances. Companies House has issued guidance to firms who will be unable to file accounts within the usual deadline. Access the information here.

In the following article, some of the IoD's Course Leaders tackle the importance of business strategy during the pandemic. Read their thoughts and contributions here

Government support for directors

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, the Government has announced a range of measures to support directors, both as individuals and in terms of governance responsibilities. Read the IoD's briefing on the key changes here.

Covid-19 and International Trade

How is the outbreak of coronavirus affecting international trade and global supply chains? Our Trade Policy team provide insight into the current short term impact on business, as well as background on how the outbreak reflects a globalised economy. 

Read the Trade Policy team's article on trading through coronavirus here.