Date posted: 03/10/2019 5 min read

A strong foundation to go forward

Governance changes passed by CA ANZ members earlier this year give your professional body a solid foundation for the future.

In Brief

  • All five changes made in the CA ANZ 2019 Member Vote are now effective.
  • Members wanted more opportunities for deeper engagement and a voice for our diverse membership.
  • Change and flexibility ensures that CA ANZ and its members continue to evolve.

The governance changes passed by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand members in a member vote held in May this year give your professional body a solid foundation for the future.

Change, as both an opportunity and a challenge, has been a constant theme in feedback from members received during 2017’s strategic review.

“Change, as both an opportunity and a challenge, has been a constant theme in feedback from members…”
Stephen Walker FCA

Our new governance arrangements, which both broaden and strengthen members’ voices, leave us well placed to deal with the increasing pace of change and rising expectations placed on the profession and its representative body.

All five changes in the 2019 Member Vote are now effective. Australia’s governor-general recently approved the changes to our Supplemental Royal Charter and By-Laws, so the new structures, materials and processes will be in place by 1 January 2020.

Three of those five changes support the increasing diversity of our membership. We are more open to engage with members everywhere, in particular globally, through our governance structure, making sure we have the skills and expertise we need in our Council.

The governance and strategic review which made all this possible were driven by Murray Jack FCA, the CA ANZ’s board’s inaugural chair, who stepped down after the board meeting in July this year. As chair, Murray made an immense contribution to the profession and CA ANZ over the past five years. The board has chosen Tony Harrington AM FCA to fill, as Tony has said, Murray’s “very large shoes”.

These changes in our governance and leadership are an opportunity to reflect on the resilience of our tiered governance structure. An independent report written as part of our governance review found that we had the right checks and balances between the CA ANZ Council and the board.

The Council represents the interests of the public and CA ANZ members, and receives input on matters of strategic importance from CA ANZ regional councils and sector advisory committees.

These are essential feedback loops to ensure the Council is aware of opportunities and challenges affecting and facing members. In turn, this can be passed on to the board and organisation which, respectively, have responsibility for developing and implementing strategy.

The governance review, and members speaking their minds, also revealed areas where we could improve. Members told us we needed to create more opportunities for deeper engagement alongside a meaningful voice for our diverse membership. Governance structures also needed clarity.

Our CA ANZ membership continues to change post amalgamation. It is now significantly more similar to the communities in which we work and live. Today, if you meet a member under age 40, you can equally expect them to be female as male. CA ANZ’s board is close to having equal representation of genders; the Council is a couple of steps away, but working towards it.

Change ensures that we all continue to evolve. Being more representative, flexible and inclusive gives us a solid base to ensure we change in ways that put trust at the centre of our activity to promote, protect and support the public interest, our profession and the chartered accountant designation.

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