Comms directors are still excluded from boardroom

Communications chiefs are still barred from FTSE 100 boardrooms, despite ever-closer ties with chief executives, research has found.

In one of the most comprehensive surveys to date of senior comms chiefs and directors of corporate affairs, head-hunter Watson Helsby has revealed that less than 30 per cent enjoy a seat on the board.

‘This reduces the scope to influence big decisions that have an impact on reputation,’ the report warns.

Yet in 80 per cent of these companies, comms chiefs report directly to the chief executive, the survey found.

The survey involved face-to-face interviews with 28 comms chiefs at companies including Vodafone, BP and GlaxoSmithKline.

Stakeholder communications is still fragmented, with only 29 per cent of those surveyed responsible for all key comms disciplines.

In more than half the companies, investor relations still reports to finance departments, the survey found.

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