Jan 192021
Defence Business Services – Non-Executive Director

Non-Executive Director - Defence Business Services

Body: DBS
Appointing Department: Ministry of Defence
Sectors: Business, Finance & Skills, Defence
Location: All meetings are currently being held virtually. However post-Covid there will be occasional travel to Bristol, London and other DBS sites as required.
Skills required: Business / Commercial, Change Management, IT / Digital, Major Projects
Number of Vacancies: 2
Remuneration: £10,000 per annum
Time Requirements: There is a time commitment of up to 20 days per year.
This is not a ministerial appointment.
Closed for Applications: 10/02/2021 at 12:00

Vacancy Description

The DBS Board provides strategic direction and holds the DBS executive to account on behalf of the MoD Chief Operating Officer for the efficient and effective delivery of its strategic objectives. It provides an important oversight and assurance role, ensuring that an effective framework for corporate governance is in place within DBS, as well as playing a critical role in supporting and endorsing the development of annual and corporate plans and significant business cases.

The Board’s functions specifically include:

  • On behalf of the Sponsor, act as the primary corporate oversight body for DBS, providing assurance to the Sponsor and wider Department that there is:
  • Clarity on DBS’s current and future outputs;
  • A robust strategy for development/delivery of future DBS outputs;
  • A 5-year DBS Corporate Plan and associated strategic KPIs by;
  • A 1-year DBS Business Plan
  • Oversight of the implementation of DBS corporate/business plans;
  • Properly assured business controls and risk management
  • Robust assurance of business cases that exceed the delegated authority of the Chief Executive.
  • On behalf of the DBS Chief Executive and Executive team, provide:
  • Challenge, support and advice on activities and proposals brought by the Executive team, working in partnership with DBS for the benefit of DBS and wider Defence;
  • Champion and support of DBS’s purpose and objectives across Defence, Government and beyond.

As DBS is legally part of MOD, the DBS Board is not a fiduciary board. However, it acts as if the Board were fiduciary to the fullest possible degree.

Person Specification

The Non-Executive Directors (NEDs) will be accountable to the DBS Board Chair, who will conduct annual effectiveness reviews of NED performance. NEDs will be expected to provide support to the Board Chair by challenging and holding the DBS executive team to account in delivering against Corporate Plan and Business Objectives. The Board provides an important oversight role ensuring an effective framework for corporate governance is in place within DBS, and is supported by effective and properly constituted sub-committees. The DBS NEDs will also play a key role in championing DBS across the wider department. The NEDs will be expected to work closely with DBS and other MOD officials.

Working with the Chair and other Board members, the NEDs will be specifically responsible for:

  • Endorsement of DBS’s corporate plans, overseeing corporate performance and hold senior leadership team to account against those plans;
  • Ensure appropriate processes are in place to monitor and evaluate the implementation of DBS’s strategies, policies, business transformation, corporate plans and performance management (including on current operations/service delivery to customers). Therefore, ensuring the business delivers value for money and any risks or issues are managed, mitigated and/or reported and raised as necessary;
  • Assure and monitor progress on all major expenditure and transformation programmes exceeding the authority delegated to the CEO;
  • Shaping DBS’s future vision and influencing design and delivery of its transformation programme;
  • Understand and take into account interests of key stakeholders. Championing the value and benefits of DBS within wider Defence;
  • Ensuring there is a culture of transparency and collaboration between DBS and its Defence stakeholders, and that DBS plans align with customer priorities and needs;
  • Participating in Board discussions frankly and constructively, to inform effective discussion;
  • Providing input into Board Effectiveness reviews, making recommendations for improvements on how the Board should operate;
  • As necessary, chairing and or attending sub-committees, and where appropriate providing reports and updates from these to the DBS Board. It is expected that one of the two roles will be required to attend the Audit and Risk Committee and provide support and advice to the Audit and Risk Committee Chair.

The successful candidate must abide by the Seven Principles of Public Life.

Candidates will need to be highly engaged and credible leaders with the ability to form positive, effective and trusted relationships with people at a high level within DBS, the Corporate Board and in MoD. You should ideally have proven experience of working in a shared services environment or of transforming a large-scale delivery organisation. They will also have an appreciation of the principles and governance arrangements underpinning the public sector. MoD is committed to increasing the diversity of its Boards.

Essential criteria

In addition, the candidates should have the following:

  • Experience of delivering or working with large-scale transformational delivery programmes;
  • One of the two roles requires proficiency or knowledge of pensions and/or service compensation schemes to support the ARAC Chair (please highlight in your application if you are specifically applying for this role);
  • Outstanding communication and interpersonal skills with the ability to manage and develop diverse stakeholder relationships at all levels;
  • An ability to contribute to Board discussions by bringing fresh ideas and perspectives to the table, and by challenging constructively;
  • Excellent analytical and intellectual capability, with the ability to analyse and rapidly assimilate complex information/ policy proposals and reach sound strategic judgements;
  • The ability to think strategically and operate at the top levels of an organisation to set direction and articulate vision.

Desirable criteria

  • Experience of being a senior executive in an operational delivery organisation with a broad and challenging customer base. With a focus on developing business transformation whilst sustaining organisational effectiveness;

Experience of chairing a Board committee or sub-committee.

Additional Information

The appointment will be for a period of 2 years

How to Apply

If you unable to apply online please contact Defence Business Services (DBSCivPers-ResNONSTDAPPTS@mod.gov.uk)

Please submit the Expression of interest, a CV and the diversity Monitoring form


This post is NOT regulated by The Commissioner for Public Appointments.

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