Recommendation 2.2 of Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations (CGPR) 2019 states that a listed entity should have and disclose a board skills matrix setting out the mix of skills that the board currently has or is looking to achieve in its membership.
Board members should have a diverse range of skills, experience, and perspectives. Disclosing the matrix provides useful information to the investors in ensuing that the board has necessary skills to discharge its obligations effectively and add value. A board skills matrix also aids in identifying skill gaps, and guides development and succession planning. A regular review of the matrix ensures coverage of skills necessary for current and future business and governance needs.
The format of the matrix can vary, showing current or desired skills, or both, with the option to include or exclude directors' names and confidential information.
In our 2023 Governance Impressions Report, we analysed the board skills matrix of top 100 ASX listed companies by market capitalisation.
About 55% of the companies listed 10-14 skills. At the extreme end, 2% listed up to 4 skills, and 3% listed more than 20 skills.
On average, companies listed 11 skills in their board skills matrix.
Key Skills Listed
Skills and Attributes
The board skills matrix of the top 100 ASX listed companies based on market capitalisation mainly consisted of technical abilities and expertise. A few companies also considered attributes like diversity, integrity, and ethics as board skills.
The board skills matrix is usually disclosed in the corporate governance statement. The disclosure practices of companies vary and can be categorized as follows:
An ideal board skills matrix should demonstrate the board’s current abilities as well as the skills it plans to acquire to execute the company’s strategy. Disclosure of the skills matrix, in particular extensive disclosure, helps investors to gain a better understanding of the board’s competence and to assess its ability to achieve the objectives of the company.