Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)
Chiltern Branch – Chair’s Annual Report 2007

Chair’s Annual Report 2007

Welcome to my final annual report as the Chair of the Chiltern Branch. Although the last two
years seem to have flown by one thing never fails to surprise me – the commitment and effort
put in by each and every one of the committee members. They are a pleasure to work with and
on that note it is once again my great honour to update you on all the activities that the branch
have been involved with and to share with you some of our many achievements over the last
twelve months.

Over the course of the year many of those involved with the committee have continued to
invest their time in creating a varied programme of branch activities, develop our relationships
with local education providers and students, and participate in a wide range of other related
activities, from supporting the key strategic objectives of the Institute through to creating the
quarterly newsletter. Without their support many of the things that we take for granted would
not have been implemented.

Education and Development sub-committee

Throughout the year, Pat Abbitt has continued the excellent work of her predecessor Jenny
Whitesmith. The Education and Development sub-committee has continued to go from
strength to strength and the Institute continues to hold up the relationship that has been
forged with our local providers as ‘best practice’ to follow.

At a local level, the academic standards across the area have continued to impress. As well as
those that have been recognised within each of the Institutions for excellence in academic
achievement, Emma Crumpton from Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College (BCUC)
deserves a special mention as she won the national prize for the best examination performance
in Specialist and Generalist Personnel and Development. This is a great achievement which was
recognised through an award that was presented to Emma at the CIPD’s National Conference in
Harrogate – congratulations Emma for all your efforts!!!


Continuing with the theme of student participation, a number of specific upgrading events have
been held over the course of the year to expedite the progress of students to Chartered levels
of membership. Many of the providers across the branch have held specific events so that
students, upon the completion of the formalities of their qualifications, can complete the
required paperwork for Member status. Such activity has been integral to the branch now
having one of the highest levels of Chartered Memberships across the Institute. It has been a
strategic priority for some time for the CIPD to progress Non Chartered (i.e. Graduates) to
Chartered (i.e. Member and Fellow) levels and currently the branch has a split of 55% to 45%
respectively. Well done to everybody that has been involved in this great achievement,
however, a special thanks must go to Kerry Forster who has been integral to our success.

16/02/200u7                                                                                   1
Author: David Balls
Branch Programme

The programme of events continues to deliver high quality speakers and informative
sessions. Overall, attendance levels have continued to grow, with the numbers in 2006/7 being
particularly strong. It would not be possible to single out any one event as the quality has been
exceptional; however, the tireless efforts of the committee should be formally recognised as the
success that we have achieved would not have been possible without them – well done to all of
you that have been involved!

We would obviously like to see more of our branch members coming along to events and so
please feel free to attend any of the sessions on offer. Whilst we have three geographical
groups (Aylesbury, Beaconsfield and Slough) members can attend any venue they wish. All our
events are free and there is no need to book, although booking through the web allows us to
plan our resource allocation more effectively. As such, we would appreciate your help in
allowing us to do this by booking on line - please see the branch website for more


This year has seen the launch of the new colour version of the branch newsletter. From the
feedback that we have collected it appears as though the new format has been well received,
however if there are any specific comments that you would like to make, then please do not
hesitate to contact me using the details provided later in this document. Many have commented
that the revised format is more eye-catching and engaging, resulting in many more of you
reading the newsletter to find out about the many events and activities that the committee and
branch members are involved with.

With regards to the branch website, we continue to go from strength to strength. The site
affords us the opportunity to let our local members know who we are, what we are about and
how to contact us. We also have a page which enables us to describe our activities in relation to
membership and continuing professional development. We have also provided ‘quick links’ in
the branch links pages so that our members can easily find what they are looking for from the
40,000 pages on the main site. The other great advantage of having the branch web site is that
we can now communicate our events programme. The next branch event is published on the
home page, along with any last minute reminders about networking opportunities or other
urgent items. Notably, all of our event addresses are linked to multimap which means when you
click on the link you get the local map of the site which can be printed locally. We are also able
to attach our presentation slides to the web site. So if you have missed the event, you can
review the details of the presentation by clicking on the appropriate event (the presentations
are usually there for about a month after the event). For those of you that have not yet visited
our web site please try it and give us feedback.                     It can be accessed at:

Finally, I could not talk about branch publicity without saying a big thank you to Cheryl Myles
who has worked hard over the last two years to introduce the new format of the newsletter.
Cheryl steps down at the next Annual General Meeting (AGM) and all of us will miss the verve
and commitment with which Cheryl approached this monumental task. There is a lot of work
that goes on behind the scenes to deliver the newsletter directly to your door and Cheryl has
done an excellent and professional job of making this happen seamlessly.

16/02/200u7                                                                                   2
Author: David Balls

At a general level, we continue to be strong financially due to all the efforts of our Treasurer,
Mike Moss. Although this year we have been more progressive in what we have delivered to our
members, resulting in extra cost being incurred, Mike has ensured that the branch has one of
the healthiest set of accounts across the Institute. Notably, Mike steps down this year and is
replaced by Jenny Whitesmith. As such, I would like to formally thank Mike for all his efforts
over the years. Mike has been a great servant to the committee and we will miss all the
experience that he brings to each and every conversation. Jenny really has got a hard act to
follow, however, I am sure that she will approach it with aplomb.

As a committee, we have also continued to give our views and comments on many areas of
government policy. The Institute regularly sends out information on forthcoming legislative
changes and the committee takes great pride in responding to these. This year has been no
exception and we have furthered our endeavours by establishing a group that meets on a
regular basis. Formed under the excellent stewardship of Sue Granshaw, this group discusses
forthcoming policy and creates a response on behalf of the branch. Notably, we are always
looking for members to get involved and make a contribution. So, if you are interested in
joining this group and continuing their excellent work, than please do not hesitate to contact
either Sue or myself. We would be delighted to hear from you!

This year has also seen the implementation of our data and information group. The
brainchild of one of our newer committee members – Adrian Osbourn – this group ensures that
we track the feedback that we receive from various information sources and use this to form
our ideas and set the future direction of the committee. Indeed, the success of this group has
been instrumental in the identification of some key objectives for the committee which we have
recently published and will work towards achieving from the 2007 AGM to the same event in

For those of you that would like more information on these objectives that support the CIPDs
strategic priorities then please do not hesitate to contact me using the details provided. I would
be more than happy to share these with you and if you have any input to improve these, or to
focus the efforts of the committee even more, it would be much appreciated.

With regards to the committee itself, the meetings that I have chaired this year have been as
lively and as informative as always. My colleagues on the committee have been willing to share
their views on what would offer the most to you as our members. It is really encouraging to see
such a level of healthy debate and participation that underlies the enthusiasm with which
committee members approach their work. As I say, on almost a monthly basis, without these
individuals the branch would not be able to achieve all that it does and so thank you to each
and every one of you.

We are always looking for new committee members and so please feel free to contact me at if you would like to discuss your potential participation in future
committee activities further.

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Author: David Balls
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that this is YOUR branch committee
and I would encourage you, not only to get involved in anyway that you can, but to give us
your views on how to improve what we offer. If you have any comments, please feel free to
contact me at the email address given above.

See you at the AGM.

Thanks, David


I would also like to record my thanks to all the staff at Head Quarters, with a special mention
for Cheryl and the Branch Development Team. Every year they are integral to the success of
the branch and their support over this year in particular has been immense – thank you.

I would also like to make a special mention to David Slingo who has made an exceptional
contribution to the CIPD Executive Board and Audit Committee. David, a member of the branch
committee, has really helped to shape the Institute’s current thinking. Thank you David for all
your support both locally and nationally.

16/02/200u7                                                                                   4
Author: David Balls

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