On Board: a guide for members of management advisory boards

This guidance is for all those appointed by the Chief Executive to be a member of management advisory boards.

Role and Responsibilities of the Chief Executive

The Chief Executive of the public body is appointed by, or on the recommendation of, the Scottish Ministers to discharge certain functions - either administratively as head of an Executive Agency or by statute as a Non-Ministerial Officeholder.

The Chief Executive is responsible for all aspects of the operation of the body, any policy developed and any policy or service delivered. The Chief Executive is personally accountable either to the Scottish Ministers and the Scottish Parliament (for Executive Agencies) or directly to the Scottish Parliament (for Non-Ministerial Offices).

The relationship between the Chief Executive and the Management Advisory Board is an important one.

The relationship could be set out in a way that includes a process for resolving disputes or disagreements between the parties that may arise from time to time. Chief Executives are responsible for considering whether such an arrangement would be appropriate for their public body.

Role and Responsibilities of the Chief Executive

Chief Executive

  • Ensures that financial considerations are taken fully into account at all stages in reaching and executing decisions, and that appropriate financial appraisal and evaluation techniques, consistent with the Scottish Public Finance Manual, are followed;
  • Agrees the public body's corporate and business plans;
  • Ensures effective relationships with stakeholders;
  • Ensures that timely forecasts and monitoring information on performance and finance are provided to the Scottish Government as appropriate; that the Scottish Government is notified promptly if overspends or underspends are likely and that corrective action is taken; and that any significant problems, whether financial or otherwise, and whether detected by internal audit or by other means, are promptly notified to the Scottish Government;
  • Ensures robust performance and risk management arrangements, consistent with the Scottish Public Finance Manual, are in place to support the achievement of the public body's aims and objectives and facilitate comprehensive reporting to the Scottish Ministers or the Scottish Parliament and the wider public;
  • Ensures that the public body adheres, where appropriate, to the Scottish Government's Programme and Project Management Principles;
  • Ensures that adequate systems of internal control are maintained by the public body, including effective measures against fraud and theft consistent with the Scottish Public Finance Manual;
  • Establishes appropriate documented internal delegated authority arrangements consistent with the Scottish Public Finance Manual.


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