This is a very telling excerpt from the job description of the new Chief Executive recently recruited to replace the retiring David Hewett. Important points are noted in red. We will be looking closely at ARMA’s ability to impose discipline now that a new CE is taking up her post, having left DCLG. On the basis that there is no legislation in place, and the various codes of practice are totally unenforceable, how is this discipline going to be effected and effective? Firing Peverel or any other managing agent for losing many LVT’s damages ARMA’s revenue stream/bottom line – are they really going to do that? We continue to doubt it, but will be looking out for any indication that their processes will become more robust in the future. With less than 10% of the total number of managing agents signed up to this 40 year old organisation, what does this say about the remaining 90%? Why are they not convinced that paying the hefty fee to gain the ARMA logo and an electronic newsletter makes economic and business sense?
“ARMA’s Council is currently working on a five year plan and will expect the appointee to implement this subject to his or her input. The plan has the following stated objectives:
to maintain ARMA as “Fit for Purpose” so that its members may demonstrate Honesty, Competence and Professionalism;
to provide a competent Secretariat at suitable office premises with appropriate succession planning;
to maintain a sound financial base for the organisation;
to maintain a suitable Committee structure to control and promote the activities of ARMA
to provide suitable professional guidance to Members and the Public in the form of Guidance Notes and technical advice;
to ensure the continuance of the Annual Conference;
to maintain appropriate contact with other professional organisations including the IRPM
and to proactively increase membership of ARMA at all levels.
The expectation of the appointee can be split into five key elements:
proven capability of running an effective team that delivers to the members;
proven ability to run a business and all the facets thereof; technical knowledge within the residential leasehold sector – albeit supported by technical officers in place or to be appointed;
having extensive IT awareness to maximise the use of technology to further the aims of the organisation; and having the appropriate personal skills and attributes that will include:
– an eye for accuracy, detail and quality and the ability to deliver to timescales and within budgets
– ability to get on with and communicate effectively to people at all levels – well presented and personable – being a competent and confident public speaker
As to other more specific aspects of the role the appointee will have responsibility for, amongst things:
running an office including insurances, H&S, security, presentation and cost controls; staff management including legislative aspects, discipline, setting/agreeing, roles/tasks, monitoring; performance and team leadership and motivation; accounting including internal controls, bookkeeping, VAT, budgeting, financial, reporting and year-end accounts in conjunction with the auditors; ability to recognise business risks/liabilities and take appropriate action; and setting up / monitoring operational procedures for all relevant activities e.g. membership procedures, event bookings, etc.
understand the leasehold management sector and all the key aspects thereof and an in-depth understanding of landlord and tenant legislation; have a working understanding of any other relevant legislation with the ability to identify implications for ARMA and the sector; understand and oversee the technical consultants’ activities and become involvedwhere appropriate with various legislative / regulatory issues; and oversee regulatory activities, in particular complaints, ombudsman,and the delivery of training, etc.
be fully aware of ARMA’s reputation and its promotion and protection; have a broad knowledge of all relevant marketing needs and activities and be able to oversee / implement annual and longer-term plans; ability to write (or oversee the writing of) publications and other communications including booklets, guidance notes, articles, etc; act as editor of publications and other communications including booklets, guidance notes, articles, newsletters, annual report etc; have an understanding of the media, (including TV, radio, press, journals) and how to communicate therewith; be able to build worthwhile relationships with all stakeholders including government and other bodies, groups, and individuals; and know how to represent / communicate ARMA’s views to government.”
We have noted and published DCLG’s view about leasehold reform over the last couple of years – they have stated endlessly that no reform is necessary, they are maintaining a watching brief etc etc. So is the new DCLG incumbent going to turn that around and persuade Mr Shapps that action is required in the next few months? Only time will tell. We await an invitation to go and meet her and discuss the reality of the plight of many leaseholders across the UK.