Trustee Focus – July 2022: Recruiting Trustees

We recently hosted a Trustee Network bringing together 25 trustees from across Cumbria.

The aim of the network is to offer peer support between trustees and share best practice, ideas, challenges and to of course network! The topic for the recent meeting was Recruiting Trustees.

Judith Smale highlighted some of the basic principles of using the Trustee Recruitment Cycle, which are:

  • Check your governing document to know the minimum and/or maximum number of trustees you can have on your board and how they are appointed and/or elected
  • Carry out a skills audit to identify skills gaps in order to do targeted trustee recruitment
  • Plan your recruitment campaign and targeted advertising channels, linking into key dates including meetings for appointment or election of trustees and notice periods (e.g. for AGM)
  • Produce or review a Trustee Role Description and Information Pack
  • Advertise for trustees, making sure details are on your own website and social media, and reaches and targets potential trustees using a variety of methods
  • Register any trustee roles so we can help to promote via our networks and on our trustee vacancy sheet
  • Filter applicants and interview your potential trustees
  • Respond to queries from potential applicants quickly and encourage candidates to apply
  • Formally appoint your new trustees and give them a great induction
  • Evaluate your recruitment campaign including seeking input from your new trustees
  • Use any learning to develop your trustee recruitment next time!

Jacqui Nicol from Carlisle and Eden Citizens Advice and Lee Martin-White from the Carnegie Theatre shared their experiences of doing a skills audit and how they targeted new trustees. Helen Carter from Frieda Scott Charitable Trust also shared her experiences of recruiting trustees via Trustees Unlimited.

For more information on recruiting trustees, you can also download this useful guide and tool kit from NCVO

If you would like support from us with promoting trustee volunteering opportunities and recruitment please contact Judith Smale, Volunteering Manager, on 01768 80350 or email

Last month, we explored what is a trustee and a volunteer director within the voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise (VSFSE) sector.