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Executive Officer Services

For organisations which have reached a critical point in their evolution, the employment of an outsourced secretariat is no longer enough to maintain the growing organisation and/or to assist in future growth plans. At this point, attention often turns to the establishment of a separate office specifically for the organisation, the employment of an Executive Officer (EO). Under the TAS EO model, this role is provided by us, under our management and care, in our offices and utilising our infrastructure, but with direct reporting lines to you, giving you ultimate control.

Our EO model gives your organisation its own senior management without the requirement to set up the infrastructure or become employers with the additional responsibilities this necessarily entails. Together with your TAS Secretariat, we provide your office and team, hosted within ours.

Structure and Management

Under the EO model, The Association Specialists works jointly with your Board to determine specific requirements in terms of staffing (hours), skill sets and work outcomes.  Once this framework has been established we will:

  • Undertake the recruitment process to fill the EO role according to your criteria.  Your Board and our Managing Director will jointly have sign-off on the final selection
  • Set up a work space for your new EO within our offices at St Leonards
  • Provide your EO with access to our office facilities and infrastructure
  • Continue to provide your organisation with access to our existing staff in areas of data entry, bookkeeping, IT support and management as part of our Secretariat agreement
  • Manage the day-to-day activities of your EO
  • Manage the employee support functions for your EO, including payroll, induction, training, and ongoing staff management and support

Control and Responsibility

Under the EO model, you retain control of your organisation’s strategic direction and moreover, the key personnel within the organisation report directly to you.

  •  Your Board will be responsible for setting the strategic direction of the organisation
  •  TAS management will be responsible for the day-to-day functioning of the EO, but will not have control over the direction given to them
  • Your EO would report directly to your Board but would have access to our Managing Director for consultation as required
  • Work outcomes would be the responsibility of your EO and ultimately, your Board

The EO Role

The primary function of an Executive Officer is to drive and implement the strategy of the organisation, which is typically set by the Board. The EO needs to be empowered to manage the daily operations of the organisation, taking overall direction from the Board. There is debate regarding whether the EO should have industry specific specialisation or business management specialisation. The answer is, ideally both. However, where a suitable candidate with experience in both elements is not found, the evidence suggests that the focus should be on recruitment of a business management/development specialist.

A 2011 report on Key Success Factors for European Trade Associations (published by Ellwood & Atfield), quotes leaders in the field regarding the EO/CEO role (commonly referred to as the Director General in the European market):

“Today’s Director General needs to have a portfolio of skills, and although knowledge of an industry sector can be useful, it is rarely a necessity”.(Alisdair Gray, Director of European Affairs, European DIY Retail Association (EDRA)).

Some of the key skills and attributes required of an EO/CEO include:

  • Diplomacy: the ability to negotiate and manage competing views
  • Strategic Leadership: guiding the association towards the achievement of established goals
  • Communication: clear, articulate, engaging and engaged
  • Management: attention to detail, focus, analytical and process driven
  • Networking: personable, relationship-oriented, sees value in networks
  • Ethics: honesty, candour, integrity and transparency

Benefits of the EO Model

Access to established infrastructure

Automatically gain: a Boardroom seating up to 12 people, IT networks and back-up systems, IT support, office equipment (desks, photocopiers, scanners, fax, computers, mail franking), access to our established software systems including Member Connect for the management of your database,  dedicated phone line, registered address

Save on office establishment and maintenance

No need to buy or maintain expensive member management software or any office infrastructure as outlined above.  This will ensure that you do not tie up valuable capital in expensive fit outs and realestate, and allows your capital to be utilised in providing greater member benefits

Access to administrative support

Utilise TAS’s existing skills in office management, database management, bookkeeping and event supports

Event Management
  • Marketing and promotion, including design and production of promotional materials
  • Venue arrangements, including sourcing and booking venues and managing event logistics such as catering, audio-visual and staging requirements
  • Speaker management, including assisting with speaker engagement
  • Sponsorship assistance, including identifying and promoting sponsorship opportunities in consultation with you
Leveraging of our environment

Your staff will gain support, knowledge, networks and skills through sharing an environment with our 20 member team

Sharing of established networks

We have built up a trusted and reputable network of suppliers over many years, which your staff would have access to.  Areas include graphic design, printing, product suppliers, venues and other industry professionals

Economies of scale

Your EO and operations will enjoy the shared buying power of our much larger organisation and its established relationships with suppliers

Sharing our knowledge base

With 25 clients under our care, your team will have access to a wealth of knowledge and established processes to draw from

Headache minimisation

Your volunteer Board will not need to worry about the recruitment, training, ongoing management of your staff, superannuation, PAYG, workers’ compensation insurance, OH&S functions, IT problems, sick leave and annual leave.

Board focus

Your Board will be able to spend their valuable time focussing on the activities which will bring the biggest benefit to the organisation – the setting and tracking of strategic direction.

Flexibility and risk minimisation

As your EO will be the employee of TAS, you retain the flexibility to increase or decrease services as required (within bounds of contracts).  You also avoid any risk associated with office and equipment leasing.

Increase high level functionality

Focus your Board and your EO on activities which create change and growth in your organisation – lobbying, increasing the member benefit proposition, PR/public affairs and media liaison, membership growth, financial growth, development of publications, sponsorship attainment.

Management expertise on hand

Tap into the skills and vast wealth of association management knowledge which exists within the TAS management team.

Access to event management professionals

Easy “in-sourcing” of the management of major events to the TAS Event Management team (to be costed and contracted separately)

Risk Management

The issue of risk management is an increasingly important one in today’s business environment.  With high levels of regulations across a number of business functions, employers are exposed to risk on many fronts.  By utilising our EO model, we are the employers and thereby minimise a great deal of the risk for your organisation and, importantly, your Directors in areas such as:

  • Employee contracts
  • Organisational compliance – ASIC, ATO, Fair Trading, Fair Work Australia etc
  • Corporate governance
  • Workplace Health and Safety
  • Systems and security
  • New ATO rules concerning Director’s personal liabilities for unpaid employee entitlements
  • Potential new requirements regarding the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Bill
  • Duty of Care requirements for Directors that have become more enshrined in law

To discuss how The Association Specialists can help guide your association to the next level