A step-by-step guide to developing guiding policies for your company’s board

April 19, 2022

April 19, 2022


Board Processes


Steven Bowman

Policies are a crucial part of running an organisation and its board because not only do they provide a work plan for daily operations, but they also ensure compliance with laws and regulations, guide decision-making and form efficient internal processes. 

But before we get into all of this, it’s important to first understand what exactly policies are, why they’re important and the best approach when it comes to developing board guiding policies. And, a Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite is a great place to start. 

This document should contain all the important, and often required information and steps that will help the organisation comply with responsibilities and regulations, from funding to legal to governance. 

This Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite is necessary for many reasons, BoardPro’s whitepaper on How to Develop Board Guiding Policies explains six purposes for a Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite. 

One of the reasons includes articulating the guidelines within the organisation that directors and other members need to operate and work with. This helps paint a clear picture of what is needed from everyone so that there is no confusion or misunderstandings, leading to a more efficient workplace. 

If your board is not sure how to create your own Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite, you will be able to find an example in the appendix of the whitepaper. This three-page long example covers all the crucial details and documents you will need to include in your Board Policy Suite, so you won’t have to worry about neglecting any information and procedures.

Once a Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite is developed and implemented, your board should review and revise the document on a regular basis as well as whenever the circumstances require. This is to make sure that the document is up-to-date and supports the organisation, the directors and board members. This whitepaper also lists notes and tips for reviewing the document.

On top of developing and reviewing the Board and Operational Governance Policy Suite, boards also need to understand the five stages of the Workflow process: Develop, Format, Update, Create and Review. This whitepaper explains more precisely how these processes relate to one another, and it details action plans for your team to follow this efficient Workflow Process.

It is also necessary to understand where different policies of your organisation sit within a hierarchy of key documents. Your board will find a handy diagram illustrating this ranking in How to Develop Board Guiding Policies, so that your board can understand the importance of policies, the key documents surrounding policies and how these documents relate to the rest of your board’s paperwork.

After familiarising yourself with the hierarchy, our team at BoardPro will go on to explain in detail the two types of Governance Policies and the two types of Organisational Policies. Some questions that the whitepaper will answer regarding these types of policies, include: 

  • What are they? 
  • How are they important? 
  • How do these types of policies work together? 
  • How do they play into the bigger operational picture of the organisation?

Aside from a Board Policy Suite, it is also recommended to develop and implement a Register of Key Documents to store important information and links. This keeps your board’s documents nice and organised and easily accessible for reviews and revisions. If you are unsure how to go about the Register, our team has also explained all the important features the Register should include, and your board can even download an example to mirror yours.

Finally, to help put these recommendations into practice, your board will be able to download a template of a standard Policies and Policy Statement that our team has put together. This template contains all the important information you will need to create and amend policies. All you will have to do is edit the titles, descriptions and other necessary details. 

So download How to Develop Board Guiding Policies now to learn all about building policies within your organisation and receive templates and examples to help you get started!

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