The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) opens its online nominations for both local and national volunteer opportunities on 1 October.
In a move towards greater democracy, FSB hopes to increase the diversity of business experience of its members standing for elected offices this year by holding both nominations and voting online.
Unlike in previous years, members will not have to attend a local FSB Annual General Meeting to take part. FSB is the UK’s largest member-led business group.
To encourage participation in the process, FSB is launching a social media campaign called #BeMoreFSB.
FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry said: “FSB is a proudly member-led organisation and our member leaders, at both local and national level, have one thing in common – like me, they all run businesses. This means that as an organisation, we, the members, are experienced business owners who lead from the front.
“We are proud to announce that for the first time, members can self-nominate online for local volunteer leader offices and voting will be open to all eligible members within the region/area boundary to encourage the widest possible engagement of members in this important democratic process.
“We as members set the strategy, both locally and nationally, based on our first-hand knowledge of running a business in the UK today. And, because we genuinely understand what it’s like to be an independent business owner, we always focus on the real issues – the ones that keep us awake at night – and that makes us, FSB, the formidable campaigning force we have become.
“As we are a grassroots organisation, we simply could not undertake the fantastic work we do without our local volunteers, who are the lifeblood of FSB. Our local activism shapes local policy and decisions that have a direct impact on the day to day running of smaller businesses.
“We have volunteers from almost every industry and business sector in the UK and we would like more members to be part of our vibrant, diverse and inclusive volunteer community.”
The term of office for all local and national volunteer opportunities is three years. Electoral Reform Services (ERS) has been appointed to facilitate the nominations and voting process.
Online nominations for the local and national volunteer opportunities open on 1 October and close on 21 October. Online voting for all local volunteer opportunities will open on 12 November and will close on 3 December. It is expected that the successful elected local member leaders will be announced in December. Online elections for the national volunteer opportunities open on 1 March 2019.
All eligible FSB members will receive details of how to take part electronically or by mail, depending upon their contact preferences.
Further details can be found at www.fsb.org.uk/elections