What Are the Secretarial Standards?

All boards hold meetings. The secretary’s most important task is ensuring perfect preparation for this event. This article will explain what documentation the secretary should do to help the board make the meeting an effective management tool. In addition, we will consider the basics of the secretariat standards. 

The purpose of the Secretariat Standards

Secretariat Standard presents the main principles for organizing and conducting board meetings and related matters. In addition, this document explains a secretary’s role in preparing the board meetings.

The key functions of the Secretariat are advocacy and communication support for the activities of the public platform and member organizations. The Secretariat carries out the general coordination of the activities of the board of directors and provides the functions of advocacy, communication, interregional activities, fundraising, organizational development, prepares and conducts meetings of the board of directors, and promotes the activities of groups, initiatives, and other structural divisions.

The Secretariat of the board meeting performs the following functions:

  • online and onsite registration of event participants
  • interaction with delegates, sending out information letters, receiving and processing participants’ applications online, maintaining a database
  • acceptance of abstracts and implementation of their technical editing
  • production of participant packages (briefcases, folders, badges, notepads, pens, USB drives, CDs, etc.)

The role of the corporate secretary 

The corporate secretary ensures a high level of corporate governance through actions aimed at minimizing agency conflicts, properly conducting corporate procedures, and implementing management practices. He is an official of the joint-stock company; it is not an organ of society since its function of expressing will is very limited. The corporate secretary in global practice is a key official responsible for organizing all corporate management work in the company.

The role of the corporate secretary in groups of companies and holdings is even more significant: it is already a whole system of functions. The work of a corporate secretary in territorially dispersed holdings deserves special attention. In this case, as in the case of independent (and even more so foreign) members of management bodies in the company, a necessary component of its work will ensure uninterrupted real-time communication of all participants in corporate governance. As experience shows, this task can be solved only by the complex efforts of qualified personnel based on specialized software.

Meetings in the work of the secretary

Each secretary should know the rules for organizing and documenting meetings. All leaders, at one time or another, either conduct or participate in them. In the professional standard “Specialist in Organizational and Documentation Support of Management,” the secretary of the chief is assigned the labor function “Organization of preparation, holding and servicing of conference events,” and the assistant chief – “Organization of business contacts and protocol events.” Both functions require organizational preparation and work with information and documentation – before, during, and after the meeting.

How often in practice the secretary will face meetings depends on the specifics and structure of the organization, as well as on the management style of a particular leader and the duties of the secretary himself. For example, if the company’s activities involve active interaction with partners, the conclusion of many contracts, then meetings involving third-party representatives will be held constantly. Moreover, the secretary doesn’t need to be involved in their organization or documentation. In large companies, entire divisions can be created to carry out such events – for example, a protocol service.

And if the rules for holding such meetings are “unified” by generally accepted business practice, then the procedure for organizing internal meetings often requires the development of proposals and optimization.