ENGIE Scrutiny Board

Posted on October 26, 2018 by Susan Vaughan.

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Energy and services business, ENGIE UK is leading the way in its commitment to operate at the highest economic, social and environmental standards.

In-line with the company’s belief in responsibilities that go beyond traditional business drivers, ENGIE wanted to develop a new Responsible Business Charter to evaluate its work in this area and examine what more could be achieved. In a post-Carillion world, this review became more important due to the increased stakeholder scrutiny of corporate governance within businesses.

The Charter, launched in September 2018, ensures that ENGIE will make commitments in the four areas of fair business growth, transparency and accountability, being a fair employer, and supporting communities and environment. It responds to the need for the business to demonstrate how it contributes to society more widely.

ENGIE wanted an independent partner to support the development of the Charter and design a governance mechanism which demonstrated their commitment to public scrutiny and transparency.

CfPS worked with ENGIE to adapt and develop its own Public Scrutiny Board model (add link) to meet their needs. The role of the ENGIE Scrutiny Board is to validate and scrutinise the KPIs of the charter throughout the year, with the outcomes and recommendations publicly disclosed through an independent Annual Report, which will be managed and overseen by CfPS.

CfPS’ role:

  • Undertaking confidential stakeholder engagement on the proposed content of the Responsible Business Charter and Scrutiny Board governance mechanism.
  • Providing expert advice on public scrutiny best practice ensuring ENGIE were leading the way in governance innovation.
  • Advising on the development of the Scrutiny Board’s Terms of Reference, work programme planning, membership criteria and approach to public reporting.
  • Providing assurance of the independence of the Scrutiny Board from inception through to implementation.
  • Supporting in the recruitment and induction of new Scrutiny Board members.
  • Acting as the liaison point between the Scrutiny Board Chair, members and ENGIE.
  • Ensuring high quality scrutiny at meetings through support to ENGIE and Board members.
  • Overseeing the publication of an Annual Report from the Scrutiny Board.

Impact to date

  • The Responsible Business Charter has clear, transparent commitments and targets which were successful developed with the business and approved by the ENGIE UK Board and global CEO.
  • The launch of the Charter and Scrutiny Board received positive feedback following its launch in September 2018.
  • The calibre of people recruited to the Board membership reflects the commitment of ENGIE to hold itself to account for delivery of the Charter.
  • The independence of the Board has been set from the first meeting, and feedback provided to the business.

What they said

“Operating in a responsible and transparent manner has been absolutely fundamental to ENGIE’s operations, and I am proud that we have formally established this commitment through the Responsible Business Charter. I believe that the Charter and work of the Scrutiny Board will establish a new industry standard helping us to lead in responsible business practice.

CfPS quickly grasped the needs of our business and advised on the governance framework, recruitment and setting-up of the Board. They will play a crucial role in ensuring its independence and impartiality, and that we benefit from effective scrutiny”.

Wilfrid Petrie, CEO ENGIE UK

“UK energy and service companies are facing ever more public scrutiny of their business, so it is extremely encouraging that ENGIE has acted proactively to strengthen their business practices.

CfPS is uniquely placed to oversee the independence of the Scrutiny Board and this model is one that should be seriously considered by other private sector organisations. Transparency and public scrutiny are critical components of public trust.”

Lord Bob Kerslake, Chair of the ENGIE Scrutiny Board and Chair of CfPS

If you would like to talk about how you can improve transparency and scrutiny of your business, please contact Jacqui.mckinlay@cfps.org.uk or call 07716 409562.