Chair of the Intellectual Property Office


Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Central Government
London or South Wales
GBP £10,000 per annum


The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is responsible for intellectual property rights including patents, designs, trademarks and copyright. It operates and maintains a clear and accessible intellectual property system in the UK, which encourages innovation and helps the economy and society to benefit from knowledge and ideas. The organisation also helps people get the right type of protection for their creation or invention.

The IPO Steering Board is responsible for advising the CEO and Minister on the overall direction and policies of the IPO. It ensures the IPO delivers on its strategic priorities and that resources are allocated effectively for their delivery. The Steering Board also regularly reviews the management and performance of the IPO and ensures high standards of corporate governance are maintained at all times.

The Chair:

The role of Chair is an important one and demands effective strategic leadership of the Board and the ability to speak on its behalf. The Chair will work closely with the full-time Chief Executive, who is the IPO’s Accounting Officer and will have the following responsibilities:

  • Leading the Board by enabling a high standard of discussion and debate, helping to steer the IPO by facilitating collective working and ensuring systems are in place to provide Board members with appropriate support and timely, relevant information required for them to perform their role;
  • Lead the Board in supporting the Executive Team in setting the strategic direction of the organisation, including advising on organisational targets and priorities;
  • Leading on the appointment, induction, succession and assessment of non-Executive Board Members to ensure an appropriate and relevant balance of skills;
  • Ensuring formal, annual evaluation of the Board’s performance and that of its committees and of individual Board members;
  • Working in partnership with the Chief Executive as an ambassador and representative on the IPO’s behalf;
  • Ensuring the Board both supports and holds the Executive Team to account for the IPO’s performance;
  • Providing Minister and BEIS Sponsor with the Board’s perspective on strategic matters and other relevant issues as required. This includes being actively involved in the appointment (if relevant) and performance assessment of the Chief Executive; and
  • Ensuring that the Steering Board, when providing strategic direction, takes proper account of guidance provided by the Minister and Secretary of State for BEIS.

The Role:

You will have senior strategic level experience and experience of both public and commercial settings with insight into, and experience of, leading a board of senior professionals, ensuring high levels of engagement and performance.

Essential Criteria

Your application should demonstrate the ability and credibility to lead and chair the Board, encourage engagement and drive performance. In particular, the role demands:

  • Board level experience in either a public or commercial sector organisation, including experience of risk management and governance at a strategic level;
  • A general understanding and appreciation of the values and role of the public sector, the IPO, intellectual property and its contribution to innovation and growth;
  • Strong strategic, analytical and commercial skills and judgement;
  • The ability to think innovatively, to challenge the norm and support a culture of organisational and behavioural change;
  • An ability to build relationships with executive colleagues and a clear understanding of the role of the executive versus that of non-executive; and
  • An excellent communicator to drive effective teamwork, challenge constructively and show diplomacy and independence with stakeholders at all levels, including Ministers, Members of Parliament and Peers.

Terms of Appointment:

  • The Chair will be appointed for a single term of 3 years, renewable for a further term at the discretion of the Secretary of State.
  • The role is part time with 6 meetings per year. There is an expectation that there will be involvement in other corporate activities which equates to approximately 22 days each year.
  • Based in South Wales or London.
  • The remuneration for this position is £10,000 per annum.

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Recruitment timetable

Timetable of the recruitment process
Closing date Thursday 7th December 2017 at 23:00

How to apply

To view the candidate information pack please click on the Continue to full details button

Please note – GatenbySanderson are not handling applications for this role. For full details on how to apply please download the pack and follow the instructions set out within

Late applications will not be accepted.

Please submit the following documents by email to 

  1. A Covering Letter
  2. A CV
  3. Candidate Application Form
  4. Diversity form

Please ensure that you include “IPO, Chair” in the subject box. 

Alternatively, you can send your application in hard copy to:

Public Appointments Team, 7th Floor  ‑ Spur 2, 1 Victoria Street, London, SW1H 0ET

Contact details

Katrina Paget
020 7426 3994
Duncan Ewart
0113 205 6092

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