Chief Executive Officer

  • £Attractive + benefits
  • Knutsford, Cheshire

Originally established in 1865 as the National Veterinary Benevolent and Mutual Defence Society, the Veterinary Defence Society Limited (VDS/“the Society”) has evolved as the pre-eminent provider of Professional Indemnity (PI) insurance to the veterinary profession in the UK and Ireland. It moved to its premises in Knutsford, Cheshire in 1990. The Society has a strong tradition as a 'mutual' organisation and is owned entirely by the members it serves. Today it supports over 90% of practising veterinary surgeons in the UK plus a similar percentage in the Republic of Ireland and is the only company which specialises in this type of insurance. PI insurance is a professional obligation in both the UK and Ireland to ensure that owners are protected from the financial consequences of errors or omissions.

The Veterinary profession is in a period of significant change. The Society, whilst maintaining its longstanding ethos of ‘a business run by vets for vets’, needs to focus its business strategy on further development and futureproofing of the overarching business structure, to provide for the changing needs of members and the practices they work for. The core business model is being maintained and further developed and the Society continues to consolidate its current PI offering through the multi-channel, online/digital delivery and management. Work is also ongoing to extend its risk management, advice and training services.

The Society’s current CEO will be leaving the Society in April 2019, and therefore it seeks a successor in role. Reporting to the Chairman, you will: have responsibility for the overall running of the Society and ultimately responsible for ensuring that the Society complies with its statutory and regulatory obligations within authorities delegated by the Board; whilst developing annual and mid to longer term strategic and business plans and managing the Society in line with the Board’s policies taking overall responsibility for the conduct of the business and its financial wellbeing. As the Society’s ‘statesman/woman’, you will be expected to provide highly visible leadership within the Society and beyond. You will be the ‘guardian’of the Society’s vision, values and culture, embedding this throughout the Society. 

The successful candidate will be an experienced, Board level business and people leader from within the Financial Services sector with strong commercial credentials. Previous/current insurance sector experience is required; likewise, a comprehensive understanding of distribution networks and other routes to market. It is important that individuals are able to espouse the mutual ethos and have an affinity with, and a commitment to the membership model.

The appointment will be subject to PRA/FCA approval.  

Please reply by clicking on the "Apply" button below, submitting a CV and short covering letter demonstrating how you meet the requirements of this role, quoting reference number RAGF6072. Alternatively, for an informal and confidential discussion please call our advising consultants – Stephanie Clarke or Rupert Gibb - on 0845 261 0600.  

All third party and direct applications will be forwarded to Warren Partners.


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