International Corporate Governance Network - ICGN, in which our forum director Melsa Ararat is also a member of the Board of Directors; has identified the following questions about COVID-19 that companies' board of directors may want to consider regarding crisis management:

  1. Does the board recognise its role and accountability to provide oversight to the company’s management of the COVID-19 crisis?
  2. How is the board structured to address the crisis? Is there a clarity of roles and responsibilities?

  3. How does the board get information about the crisis and demonstrate that it has an adequate and up-to-date understanding of the risk faced by the organisation?

  4. Does the board have access to internal or external subject matter experts on COVID- 19 to support decision making?

  5. If a crisis management committee exists how does the board allocate responsibilities to it and how does this committee interact with management and the board as a whole?

  6. Scoping the problem: what are the key financial risks and pressures and how resilient is the company to confront negative economic outcomes?

  7. How is the board addressing the crisis and its impact on employees, customers, supply chains and local communities?

  8. What key financial and strategic decisions have to be made and in what time frame?

  9. How will the company balance the interests of shareholders, stakeholders and the overall sustainability of the company itself?

  10. What are the plans for business continuity?

  11. How are communications managed internally and externally?

  12. How will the company communicate the economic impacts and threats to the company’s financial sustainability and business model?