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Audit and Risk Committee Member (Co-opted) University of Derby

University of Derby, Higher education recruitment by Peridot Partners

The University of Derby is seeking a senior strategic professional and expert in audit and risk management to join its Audit and Risk Committee. As a Co-opted Member you will support the Committee to apply the highest level of scrutiny across the University’s financial and academic governance.

  • Location: Derbyshire
  • Salary: Reasonable expenses paid

Who we are

The University of Derby is working towards its 2018-2030 Strategic Framework, which is focused on achieving its core objective of delivering an applied university of today and for tomorrow. We will aim to empower people across the globe to achieve their potential and make a positive contribution to society, by delivering excellence and opportunities for all. This is underpinned by our core principles:

  • Creating the right experience
  • Working effectively
  • Celebrating our impact

What we do, and how we do it through to 2030, will be shaped by our principles, against which all strategic and tactical decisions will be made to ensure Derby is best placed to succeed for its students, staff and region. This success will be achieved by:

  • Moulding the next generation of game-changers
  • Being a force for positive impact
  • Opening doors for everyone
University of Derby Awards Ceremony November 2016.

About the role

This is an opportunity to join a sub-committee of the Governing Council to offer your professional expertise and apply scrutiny and support that will help the Committee fulfil its responsibilities. In this role, you will help steer the University towards achieving its ambitious strategy and contribute to the University’s continued success and impact on the communities we serve.

The Governing Council and its Committees

The University’s Governing Council is the governing body of the University and the board of directors of the company. Membership comprises of a majority of independent governors (Lay Members) alongside representatives from the University’s staff and student body. The Governing Council undertakes its duties through the work of its sub-committees, which are:

  • Audit and Risk (ARC)
  • Performance, People and Resources (PPRC)
  • Skills
  • Nominations
  • Remuneration

Audit and Risk Committee (ARC)

The Audit and Risk Committee is responsible for assuring the Governing Council about the adequacy and effectiveness of the following:

  • Risk management, control and governance, including academic risk and governance
  • Economy, efficiency and effectiveness (VFM)
  • Management and quality assurance of data

ARC acts as the “conscience” of the University and conducts its business in a way that provides the assurance required and identifies any anomalies in behaviour where necessary. The Committee’s conduct is in line with the Nolan Principles of Public Life and the Committee is authorised to investigate any activity within its terms of reference.

You will find the ARC Terms of Reference here and the Committee’s key responsibilities cover:

  1. Internal controls
  2. Internal Audit
  3. External Audit
  4. Non-financial Quality Management

The Audit and Risk Committee meets five times per year and with the University’s Auditors once per year. Meetings are a mix of in person and hybrid, and usually last for 2.5 hours.

The ARC’s membership includes six Members of the Governing Council and a Students’ Union representative.

Co-opted Committee Members

Co-opted Committee Members are appointed for an initial term of up to three years and will need to commit to attending six meetings throughout the year and taking part in an induction and mandatory training as necessary.

Preparation time will be required before meetings to read through board papers and to organise thoughts and contributions to the debate. All Members are expected to engage fully with the debate and contribute their expertise and knowledge as required to enable the work of the Committee.

You will also be invited to attend networking events and University graduation ceremonies, and we love to see as many of our Governors and Co-opted Members as possible at University events and celebrations.

These positions are unremunerated, but Committee Members can claim reasonable travel and other expenses incurred whilst undertaking the duties of a Co-opted Committee Member.

In return for your commitment and contribution, you will benefit from being part of a successful and ambitious University seeking to maximise opportunities for its graduates. You will also have the opportunity to build professional networks, collaborate with other Committee Members and Governors, and further build your non-executive profile and impact.

Who we are looking for

[Pictures Copyrighted to Beth Walsh] University of Derby open day 2023

The University of Derby is seeking candidates with a passion for contributing to the development of educational opportunities, the senior leadership experience and insight to steer the University through to its future goals, and the commitment to contribute to the success and future potential of its students.

We expect candidates to demonstrate a personal interest and commitment to higher and further education and to the aims, ethos and mission of the University of Derby. A strong and clear commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion is essential to this role.

For this role, we are seeking candidates who bring significant experience in operating at an executive or senior leadership level in a large and complex organisation, with a proven track record in strategic oversight of risk management and mitigation, preferably within a regulated environment.

Although not essential, it would be advantageous for candidates to have some insight or understanding of audit and risk as it relates to the English higher education sector and its regulatory body, the Office for Students.

We are especially keen for candidates to bring a broad understanding of financial sustainability and demonstrate some understanding of the specific risks associated with the HE sector and the University of Derby in particular as it relates to the work of the Audit and Risk Committee.

Candidates must demonstrate an understanding of the standards expected of appointments to public office. You will have a proven professional track record, excellent communication skills, and the ability to absorb information, distil detail and frame constructive lines of inquiry. You will be skilled in challenging effectively at executive level but also able to offer insight and support. You must have the ability to contribute to strategic thinking, bring an understanding of audit and risk challenges within a regulatory environment and be adept at working in a non-executive role, taking the pulse without being hands-on.

Candidates must be able to commit their time and expertise as required to fulfil the duties of a Co-opted Committee Member and take every opportunity to be an active part of the University’s community.

As part of the University’s and Peridot’s commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion, we are particularly interested to hear from applicants from under-represented groups. You can find further information about our commitment and the support available to candidates via the Accessibility and How to Apply sections.

For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

Dr Sophie Carney | sophie@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07399 528307


If you would like to know more about this role please contact Dr Sophie Carney

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About the University of Derby

The University of Derby is a modern, innovative education provider that achieved its university status in 1992. Teaching at the Derby site dates back to 1851 when it was a Diocesan Institution for training teachers, so we have over 160 years of expertise in education. We have since become a University of first choice for students who want a supportive, aspirational environment where they can equip themselves for the career they choose. Our significant investment in world-class facilities is building on our reputation for student-focused real-world learning in an increasingly competitive sector. Located in the heart of England, we build on our region’s heritage of innovation to provide industry-relevant, expert teaching at all levels.

Our combined higher and further education offering is spread over campuses in Derby, Buxton, Leek and Chesterfield, and we have some of the best university facilities in the UK.

During the last ten years, we have invested over £200 million in facilities designed to give students the very best possible learning environment. We have more investment planned and continue to develop teaching to be innovative, stimulating, and engaging.

Buxton and Leek College course imagery, photography by Richard Richards Photography.

Recent investments include:

  • £12 million STEM Centre including facilities for mechanical testing, robotics, and an anechoic chamber.
  • State-of-the-art £10.8 million Sports Centre.
  • Immersive Interactive Simulation Suite, the only one of its kind in a University outside London.
  • Forensic Training Facility with a dedicated crime scene house.
  • Fashion industry facility at Chandos Pole Street.
  • Industry-standard Bloomberg Financial Markets Lab.

We achieve outstanding results for our teaching and research and with around 27,000 people choosing to study with us every year, we depend on the dedication of a team of 3,000 academic, professional, and support services staff.

We want everyone to receive the high-quality education they deserve, regardless of age, background or location. We were named University of the Year at the UK Social Mobility Awards 2020 and Higher Education Institution of the Year at the 2020 NEON (National Education Opportunities Network) Awards. And we have won the Guardian University Award 2020 for Social and Community Impact.

Challenging, interesting and constantly changing, the University of Derby is an exceptional place to learn and an incredibly rewarding place to work.

University of Derby graduation held at the Buxton Dome 04-11-2022. Photography by Richard Richards Photography.

Accessibility information

[Pictures copyrighted to Beth Walsh 07888753521] University of Derby- The day before open Day 2021

Every aspect of our University is committed to promoting equality and diversity through inclusion. We understand that to thrive at work, inclusion engenders a sense of belonging and we recognise that wholeness at work is key to engagement and high performance. We encourage and enable our staff to celebrate the richness of their diversity, participating in staff networks, contributing to awareness raising and role modelling practices and behaviours consistent with our values.

Throughout the year, we hold multiple events that champion equality, diversity and inclusion; such as International Women’s Day, Women’s History Month, Black History Month, Disability History Month and LGBT History Month. We provide staff with a blended approach to staff development, offering a wealth of online and face-to-face resources, which are thought-provoking and challenging to ensure that staff understand their responsibilities towards equality, diversity and inclusion. Working at the University is exciting and together, we will continually strive to make the University the most inclusive place it can be.

Some examples of our accessibility provisions include:

  • Step-free access to the building, all key meeting rooms and bathrooms, and an accessible workstation.
  • Accessibility dogs are welcome.
  • Papers and materials can be presented in different formats.
  • Working patterns and locations can be adjusted.

The University of Derby is a Disability Confident Employer, a member of the AccessAble Scheme, holds a bronze Athena SWAN Charter award, is a Stonewall Diversity Champion, and won University of the Year at the UK Social Mobility Awards 2020.

Click to read further information about the University of Derby’s commitment to encouraging diversity and championing inclusion.

For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

Dr Sophie Carney | sophie@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07399 528307

    To access a full job description and application details,
    please fill out the form below.


    Thank you for your interest in this role. Please download the Role Description and Person Specification.

    To formally apply, please submit a CV and supporting statement (ideally maximum 2 sides of A4 each) that clearly outlines your suitability for the role against the criteria provided in the person specification, including your interest and motivation in applying for this position.

    Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “ University of Derby – ARC Co-opted Member” into the subject field.

    For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

    Dr Sophie Carney | sophie@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07399 528307

    As a sector-leading executive search consultancy, we know the importance of creating recruitment processes which are fair, inclusive and free from bias. We are committed to promoting equality and diversity and developing a process that values differences.

    If you have a disability that meets the definition set out in the Equality Act 2010, and you can show that you meet the ‘essential’ criteria described in the person specification, please let us know.

    If you experience any technical or accessibility difficulties, need help making an application, or have any additional support needs to be considered as part of the interview and selection process, please let us know.

    Recruitment selection processes are based on evidence of competence stated in the person specification and in relation to our values.

    To comply with the Office for Students regulations on governance, the University of Derby is required to ensure Governing Council and Committee Members have completed a satisfactory Fit and Proper Person Questionnaire. Appointments will also be subject to receipt of two satisfactory references and approval by the Governing Council.


    Closing date: 9 a.m. Monday 12th February 2024
    Candidates informed of outcome: Tuesday 20th February 2024
    Interviews: Wednesday 28th February 2024

    Equal Opportunities Monitoring

    Peridot and University of Derby are committed to promoting equality and diversity. To help us raise awareness and support a culture that is diverse and recognises and develops the potential of all, we need to appreciate the profile of candidates who apply for positions. We will send you an equality monitoring survey at the point of receiving your application, in the interview phase and at the time of placement. This ensures that our processes remain inclusive and equitable throughout, and provides us with important data to help us showcase our impact. The information will be treated confidentially and anonymously and will help us to support our commitment to fair recruitment practice. All information provided will be held in the strictest confidence and will not be shared with anyone, in line with the new Data Protection Act 2018 launched on 25 May 2018. The information provided does not form part of the decision-making process and will not affect your application.

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