1 AUG 2022
Since my last update, I am pleased to be able to report there has been positive progress in a number of areas that will help deliver the transformative change called for in Lord Bichard’s report.
First, Governing Council has agreed the steering groups that will oversee the implementation of Lord Bichard’s recommendations. Covering five thematic priorities – governance; strategy; people, culture and values; member services; and knowledge and practice – these Council-led groups will drive forward the reforms Lord Bichard called for and ensure they are delivered at pace. This is an important first step in ensuring RICS is refocused as a truly member-led organisation with public interest at its heart, and members can be assured that I and all RICS staff are committed to supporting the steering groups to succeed in their vital work.
Furthermore, in line with one of Lord Bichard’s specific recommendations, in the coming weeks members will be invited to share their views via a consultation on the structure of RICS’ Professional Group Panels as recommended by Lord Bichard. It is proposed that these panels are developed to lead the advancement of knowledge and professional development in their respective surveying sectors, and to form part of the future governance structure of RICS reporting into the proposed Knowledge and Practice Committee. I encourage all members look out for next steps on this and take part once the consultation launches. This will help us continue bringing together the critical insight and expertise from across the profession for RICS to lead on the issues that matter for everyone living and working in the built and natural environment.
More broadly, Governing Council has also agreed to merge the Nominations and Remuneration Committees into a single Nominations and Remuneration Committee. This new body will have a wider role than the former Nominations Committee in overseeing governance appointments, and will help bring greater scrutiny and transparency to these essential processes. An immediate task for the new Committee will be to appoint the Chair of the RICS Board and Senior Independent Governor roles, and I hope to be able to report on progress in these areas very soon.
Similarly, Governing Council has also decided to change RICS’ financial year end from 31 July to 31 December, thereby aligning the financial year with the calendar and membership years. This aims to enable members and stakeholders to review and analyse more easily progress against the Business Plan, subscription renewals and budget allocation, while more immediately allowing scrutiny this year of progress in implementing the Bichard Review’s recommendations. Full details on how RICS will fulfil its obligations on reporting and producing financial statements as a result of the changes are available here.
Taken together, I hope the breadth of this activity indicates just how extensive the changes flowing from the Bichard Report will be, and the corresponding importance of continuous input from members to ensure its success. We are committed to delivering these changes at pace, and I know that together we have the drive and insight to shape the future-focused, inclusive profession that the future demands. I look forward to sharing further progress in transforming the way RICS works in the coming months.