AIST’s Governance Code is a principles-based framework which goes beyond current regulatory requirements, cementing a high benchmark of practice in Australia. The Code, which consists of 8 principles and 21 requirements, aims to promote continuous improvement in governance practice, improve accountability and transparency, and protect and improve outcomes for members.
As part of the implementation of the Code, AIST appointed a three-member independent Governance Code Monitoring Panel responsible for monitoring, engagement, reporting, and other Code-related activities.
The Code became mandatory for AIST member on 1 July 2018 and fiscal year
2021 was the third full year of reporting by member funds.
The Panel’s assessment of fiscal year 2021 reporting is available here. The report analyses 37 AIST member compliance reports submitted to the Governance Code Monitoring Panel. It finds that the funds have continued to improve their level of compliance. The Panel identified four requirements where governance practice and reporting can improve:
- 2.2 Maintain a matrix showing skills, experience and diversity which acknowledges gaps the board will fill to fulfil its strategic plan; disclose a representation of the matrix;
- 1.4 Demonstrate a written diversity policy setting out measurable objectives with annual reporting to ensure broadest talent pool is tapped;
- 1.5 Annually evaluate performance of collective board and individual trustees; disclose the process and confirm annual implementation;
- 1.6 Have a documented process for evaluating senior management and disclose that the process was undertaken.
The Panel’s assessment of reporting for previous years are available:
Fiscal Year 2020
Fiscal Year 2019
Fiscal year 2022 is the fourth year in which funds will report and there is a requirement to have their boards sign off on the reports and submit them to AIST by 30 September 2022.
Revised Governance Code
In 2022 AIST held an extensive consultation with stakeholders and a revised Code was approved by the Board in July 2022. Funds will be required to report against the 2022 Code on 30 September 2023. The core content of the 2022 Governance Code is available here. A professionally formatted version will be available on this web site in August 2022.
Governance Code resources
The Code Guidance provides legal and regulatory context and commentary on each requirement.
FAQs includes a range of information and special guidance for public sector funds.
Governance Code tools are the in process of being updated for 2020 reporting and will include revisions of the following:
2022 Governance Code Reporting Template provides a structured report designed for use by governance personnel responsible for preparing and submitting a fund’s compliance report for approval of their Board. It also assists the Panel to analyse the profit to member sector’s governance practices.
2020 Governance Code Helpful Hints for Reporting includes models for satisfactory explanations of compliance as well as leading practice examples for each of the 21 requirements.
Further information on the Code and/or reporting processes is available by contacting Holly Lindsay, AIST Senior Manager, Governance on +61 3 8677 3855 or by emailing email@example.com