Update from the ODG Chair – November 2020

Despite the challenges, this year has seen a great deal of work completed by the Organisational Development Group with recent updates from each area detailed below. It is recognised though that there is still work to do to implement the recommendations on culture, leadership and management. In light of recent Board issues this area is being prioritised for the remainder of the year and steps are being taken to address the outstanding recommendations. Although we agreed the Future of the ODG paper, with the present reduced Board, impacts of COVID on staff work load and the need to finalise the Article changes, it is anticipated that the review of the ODG changes will slip by a quarter and will begin towards the end of quarter 1 2021.

The Competition Climbing Performance Group have submitted a bid to UK Sport for progression funding which if successful will see a substantial grant provided to the BMC over the next 5 years. This will enable the BMC to provide additional resources to competition climbing in the run up to Tokyo and beyond ensuring high levels of support from grassroots level through to medal hopefuls. We anticipate knowing the outcome in December 2020.

The proposed Members’ Council Terms of Reference were published in July and the focus of a members webinar held on 23rd July. The consultation period closed on the 11th September. The feedback received is being reviewed by the working group and integrated into a final version which will be issued to members to be discussed at the first round of area meetings in 2021 and at an open forum to be held in the first quarter of 2021, prior to approval at the next AGM.

A paper outlining proposed new voting procedures to be applied at AGM’s and GM’s was issued for members consultation in July and discussed at the members webinar as well as being made available at the September round of area meetings. An expert on voting procedures raised a concern with the proposed system as it did not fully comply with a Single Transferable Voting system. Therefore, the procedures will be updated with the revised version being made available to members for comment before the end of the year. Members will be provided with an opportunity to comment on the new proposals at a round of area meetings and the 2021 Q1 open forum.

The interim report from the Specialist Committee Review undertaken by Roger Murray, David Brown and Jon Garside was presented to National Council and the Board. It recognised that Specialist Committees are an integral part of the BMC and its core work providing fundamental expertise and support to staff. The report identifies a number of recommendations to support them more effectively and to improve the working relationship between committees, the Board and National Council.

The report is now being utilised to review the changes to the Members’ Council, updating constitution and procedural documents accordingly. The Board requested that the next stage be an update of the report that recommends a process for implementation. This will be provided to the Board in December. Following this a copy will be made available to members.

The Clubs Strategy paper was approved by the Board at their meeting on the 30th September. The paper is being passed to the Interim Executive and the SMT for them to review in detail and gain an understanding of how the resources are aligned with it in the operational plan. It is acknowledged the Clubs Committee needs to be involved in the implementation of the recommendations.

A working group has been established to review the digital platforms used by volunteers across the organisation to ensure they are provided with the right tools to be able to carry out their roles and that they are used effectively. The group is currently producing a requirements specification which following consultation with a wider pool of volunteers and office staff will be used to identify the most suitable platforms. The group is also considering the creation of procedural and training documentation.

Finally, proposed article changes which will be presented at the 2021 AGM have been available on the ODG website since February however it is likely further changes will be required in light of the implications of needing to operate digitally as a result of COVID-19, the work completed by the Governance Working Group and the publication of the specialist committee review report. The BMC’s Governance and Compliance Officer, Lucy Valerio is reviewing both reports and updating the proposed changes to the articles accordingly.

As part of the article changes, certain articles relating to Areas and the conduct of area meetings are being moved into a Terms of Reference document. A draft ToR has been reviewed by Area Officers and will be discussed by National Council prior to being issued to members for consultation by the end of November.

A member engagement webinar will be held in the first quarter of 2021 to provide members with an opportunity to ask questions on the proposed article changes and other governance matters ahead of the AGM and a date for this will be published shortly.

Fiona Sanders, ODG Chair

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