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Institution news

'Inside Track' - latest update from our President

Phil Peel, President, Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Welcome to the latest edition of "Inside Track". As the two previous Presidents before me, I’m delighted to continue this excellent tradition of providing regular updates on the Institution's Trustee Board activities.

As my first edition of Inside Track since taking over the Presidency on 25 May, I will concentrate on the Trustee Board meeting held on 15 June.

Introduction

The IMechE Trustee Board met by Microsoft Teams on Wednesday 15 June, this being the first meeting of the 2022/23 Board. Dr Clive Hickman joined the Trustees as a newly elected Deputy President. A short round of introductions was done.

Welcomes

The President welcomed Martin Robinson, Chair of IMechE Council, and Nick Valentine, the new YMB representative.

Diversity & Inclusion Moment

Helena Rivers led the D&I moment and shared on unconscious bias.

Minutes and Rolling Action List

Minutes were released for the Trustee Board meeting held on 21 April 2022.

Two ‘Out-of-Meeting’ decisions were confirmed in the meeting: ratification of NomCo recommendations for new members and the order of the Presidency for the two new Deputy Presidents (see later).

The Rolling Action List had nine open actions from previous meetings, four of which have now been closed.

Trustee Training

Neil Burton, from the Institution’s lawyers Mills & Reeve LLP, provided a briefing on the legal responsibilities, liabilities and duties of a trustee.

Governance Matters

Trustee Board

The membership of the 2022/23 Trustee Board was presented by the new President.

As this is the first election when the new Trustee Board regulations have been in force, the succession planning for the two Deputy Presidents was discussed and ratified. It is proposed that Giles Hartill will become President in 2023 and Dr Clive Hickman in 2024.

Two Trustee Board casual vacancies had been created by the election results; one for the Ordinary Member International and one for a Vice-President. NomCo has efficiently and effectively handled the casual vacancy recruitment process for both CVs and, subsequent to the meeting, Professor Graeme Britton and Helena Rivers have been successfully ratified by the Trustees to take up the Ordinary Member International and Vice-President roles respectively. This creates a further casual vacancy for an Ordinary Member which NomCo is in the process of launching.

The President also presented his proposals for chairing and attendance of the governance/operating boards and committees.

Supporting engineering refugees

A paper considering support of engineering refugees by a 2-year waiver of membership fees was presented by Jo Horton and passed.

PEP Limited

Recommendations regarding the PEP Ltd governance structure and property proposals were presented by Dr Richard Judge and Sean Fox and passed.

2022/23 Presidential Year

The President presented the key themes and objectives for his Presidential year. These included bringing the debate on our Birdcage Walk HQ building to a member vote, focus on international development and continuing the roll-out of our D&I strategy.

Projects & Programmes

Royal Charter & By-laws scoping project

Bridget Eickhoff, Chair of the Royal Charter & By-laws scoping study group, gave a status report. The aim is to issue a final statement report to the Trustees by the end of July.

HQ Joint Working Group

Professor David Nowell, member of the HQ Joint Working Group, provided an update on the progress of work. Two meetings had already been held and a further three have been scheduled including physical tours of the building so that the WG members can view the building condition themselves first-hand.

Business Performance

Business plan YTD update

Dr Alice Bunn provided the dashboard-style update report of YTD progress versus the 2022 Business Plan.

2022 is a transition year as the Institution moves to align against the strategic plan. The high-level strategy is completed and was released in the annual report (a copy of which is available on our website).

Work on the serious complaints procedure has been rolled over to Q3 due to resource issues.

Membership targets have been achieved, with the IMechE being the top PEI for new registrants for the tenth successive year.

Recruitment of a new Director of Engineering has been relaunched with significantly more interest in the posting. Interviews will be held in Q3.

Resourcing issues in the governance and IT teams are causing some delays. However, recent recruitments should partially address this.

2022 YTD financial report

P4 results were presented by Sean Fox. We remain overall ahead of budget level, largely due to underspend on Learned Society activities. PEP limited is currently behind budget, but this is due to income phasing delays which should reset during Q3.

Free reserves are currently trending better than budget due to lower capital expenditure level. However, this is partially caused by a delay in capitalising digital modernisation costs.

Feedback

I hope you find the above to be of interest and your feedback is always welcome. You can contact me at president@imeche.org

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Eur Ing Phil Peel BSc(Hons) MEng CEng FIMechE
President

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