With the effectiveness of corporate governance becoming crucial, the role of a company secretary has undergone a sea change. According to the Companies Act of 2014, the role of a corporate secretary in the private and public companies is vital. Today, the role of this professional has metamorphosed from someone taking notes during the board meetings or serving the administrative wing of the board to an advisor of the board with a major responsibility to manage corporate governance.
In this context, the chairman of the board depends on this individual for advice regarding the statutory duties of the director, the requirements of the listing rule, and the disclosure obligations. Apart from this, the chairman also relies on this person for enhancing the effectiveness of the board and to meet the requirements of the company administration. Here are a few things to know about the evolving role of top company secretary firms in Delhi putting them as key professionals in corporate governance within the organization.
Viewing the changing role
The moment you hear the term corporate secretarial services, the vision that appears is of an individual assisting the executive director or the chairman of the board. On deeper analysis, you can conjure a picture of an individual scuttling around to do things such as taking careful notes, following up on certain things for other people and setting the schedule of meetings. However, due to the changes in the norms of governance, the corporate secretary has to do all this and much more. From a mere support person to emerging as one of the key people in the positions of administration within an organization, there is much left to be said when analyzing the function of this individual. The law makes the board directors accountable when it comes to following the legal obligations but they require someone who has an adequate understanding of the laws and ensure that the corporations comply with the legal aspects and who better than this individual or a service provider of these specialists to execute the role properly.
Playing different roles
Those who step into the role of a company secretary must know about the requirements of annual and quarterly financial reports and the interim reports about all those events that are going to impact the investors. Furthermore, they must have intense knowledge about the stipulated schedules of the voting protocols and the meetings. On the whole, the company secretaries need to know and develop their in-depth understanding about the history of those laws and also determine how the passing of a new law is going to affect the existing legal practices. Finally, they must communicate the changed law to the managers, shareholders, and board members. No wonder, the top law firms in India have these professionals catering to the relevant requirements of different organizations.
Need for qualified secretaries
Today, this professional is considered as a senior position almost equivalent to the rank of the manager. Apart from their usual duties, they offer advice and counsel the chairman of the board, the executive director, and the rest. They also serve as companions to these positions. While the secretary of the board signs the important legal documents as a prominent representative of an organization and bears the accountability of the corporate seal, the company secretaries share significant information with the managers and the board about the best practices to follow in governance, and how to work with them and upholding them.
Due to the enhanced duties and the responsibilities, the boards require this position to be filled by a senior member . However, the corporations are of the opinion that a lawyer can best fit this role. A person with a law degree performs a double role in an organization as a general counsel and serving the legal requirements. However, the company must have an association with the body of accountants or a recognized body of the company chartered secretaries with a master degree in commerce of business administration.
Qualities of a company secretary
The company secretary services in India often find it difficult to fill the position of these specialists due to the changing facets and multiple demands. Despite the changing role, it is necessary that the professionals have a proper understanding of the business with a basic knowledge of security and corporate laws. Apart from this, they must have good skills in communication and create an executive presence within the organization. Furthermore, they must have instincts and the sensitiveness required to read the thoughts and the feelings of the CEO and the board of directors. Within the multidisciplinary settings of a corporation, the professional must have the potential to pursue work and achieve consensus. While the individual needs to stay up-to-date with the changes in administration and provide the changed view to the board and the managers, navigating the bureaucratic thinking is an important quality that the person must possess.
Summing it up
This professional serving the companies has to ensure that an organization pursues its business according to the legal constraints, Moreover, they must have an equal understanding of the existing and new laws and communicate them to the board of directors and managers. Due to the comprehensive responsibilities of these individuals serving the organization, it is essential that the board employs people who are adept and accomplished to cater to the multitude of roles effectively. The competent candidates are not only aware of the current happenings in the corporate world, but can pay attention to detail and have excellent communication skills.
Amy Jones has been serving as an experienced legal expert in Ahlawat & Associates. She is a passionate writer and always on the lookout for opportunities for sharing her knowledge with legal community. Follow her company on various social media networks like: Twitter and LinkedIn.
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