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What makes a good company secretary?

'What is a company secretary?'

You'd be surprised how often we hear this question. The main reason for the confusion lies in the concept, which tends to be a little vague.

On the face of it, the role can be straightforward. All company secretaries need to file returns, organise statutory registers and arrange board meetings. However, sometimes they're required to administer payroll, run the company pension scheme and even manage the office.

This can understandably lead to confusion about what the role of a company secretary is. Where does the job begin and end?

To help solve this problem, we thought we'd try to pin down exactly what you should look for in a company secretary.

Three things a first-class company secretary must have:

A company secretary must know company law like the back of their hand. They are expected to advise senior business figures such as board members and directors, and must fully understand their legal duties to the business. What's more, because they need to stay on top of current legal developments, building expertise as a company secretary is an ongoing process. What's the use in a company secretary who only knows about laws passed 5 years ago?

Whether it's maintaining the company's statutory registers or taking minutes at board meetings, almost everything a company secretary does requires the highest standard of organisation. The world of business runs on a strict schedule and a good company secretary will always be prepared.

From dealing with external stakeholders such as shareholders and regulators to senior figures inside the business, a company secretary must be adept at communicating with a variety of people. They will be diplomatic, tactful and display deft negotiation skills. As an independent member of the business, a company secretary will not be afraid to speak honestly in front of board members or directors.

Talk to the experts

Being your own company secretary uses up valuable time and money. Our accountants and business advisers can perform your company secretarial duties for you and ensure you comply with company law.

When you outsource company secretarial duties to us, we will:

  • prepare annual company reports
  • ensure statutory registers are accurate and up-to-date
  • pass on information to Companies House and other relevant bodies
  • advise on company law.

Contact us on 01628 631056, fill out our contact form or email geoffk@knightandcompany.co.uk to find out about our company secretarial service.