The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has today (1 October) launched a new online nomination and voting platform for volunteer opportunities in the South West. FSB is the voice of the UK’s small businesses and the self-employed and is the UK’s largest member-led business organisation.
The new online system will make it easier for prospective candidates to self-nominate. FSB hopes it will increase both the number and diversity of members standing for elected offices this year. In previous years members had to attend an Annual General Meeting to take part in the vote.
FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry said he hoped the move would make it easier for members to stand for a volunteer office holder opportunity and would send a message that FSB is more democratic and is keen to encourage those in the grassroots to get involved in its activities.
Mike Cherry said: “FSB is a proudly member-led organisation and all 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, lead from the front, working closely with a strong team of staff.
“We, as FSB 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 FSB the formidable campaigning force we have become.”
Mr Cherry encouraged anyone who wants to get involved to be aware of the key part they can have in shaping the organisation.
“As we are a grassroots organisation, we simply could not undertake the fantastic work we do without our local volunteers working within their business community making a difference for small businesses. Our local activity in the South West shapes local and national 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.”
Online nominations for the South West open on 1 October and close on 22 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.
The term of office for all local and national volunteer opportunities is three years and the Electoral Reform Services (ERS) has been appointed to facilitate the nominations and voting process.
All 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/volunteer