Illuminating information within job ads for both the Interim CEO and the new Chair of the UKGC

On 15 March 2021, we reported on the sudden unexpected departure of Neil McArthur from his position as Chief Executive of the Gambling Commission.

As we explained at that time:

  • McArthur was leaving before an interim replacement CEO had been appointed and
  • the appointment of a permanent replacement would not take place until after a new Gambling Commission Chairperson takes over from the current incumbent, Bill Moyes, later this year.

With a Government White Paper – in relation to its ongoing Review of the Gambling Act 2005 – anticipated later this year, those appointed to each of these positions will be leading the Commission at a crucial time for both the regulator and those it regulates. It is therefore illuminating to read the job descriptions and requirements (and applicable timescales) that have now been published in advertisements inviting applications from candidates for both positions.

Interim Gambling Commission Chief Executive

The following job advertisement for a new CEO, published by Gatenby Sanderson (which describes itself as “the UK’s leading people intelligence advisory business“) makes clear that the post of Interim Chief Executive of the Commission will be subject to a fixed term contract of just 18 months:

Chief Executive – 18 month FTC

Gambling Commission

Offices in Birmingham with UK travel and remote working

  • Location

Offices in Birmingham with UK travel and remote working

  • Job type

Permanent

  • Sector

Regulation

  • Salary/Remuneration

Up to £150,000 per annum

  • Client

Gambling Commission


Ref: GSe73576

There are few jobs where you can make a real difference to millions of consumers for an entire industry, the thousands of people who work in the UK gaming / gambling industry, and the future of the gambling industry as a whole.

From regulating the effectiveness of the National Lottery, driving action on player protection and responsible gambling, or helping strengthen safeguards around match fixing, we work with industry and stakeholders to protect consumers, particularly the vulnerable, whilst ensuring the integrity of UK sports betting.

Our remit has expanded significantly since the proliferation of online gaming and gambling, with the number of operators we regulate having grown substantially over the course of the past few years, and the on-going challenges of sector change and innovation.  Our people at the Gambling Commission, and those with lived experience with whom we consult regularly, are critical to our conviction and success, helping us to achieve appropriate and effective regulation, protection and trust.

You will join us at an important time as we seek to transform our own organisation, whilst continuing to pursue widespread improvements in protection for consumers.  The forthcoming Gambling Act Review and the launch of the fourth National Lottery Licence competition last year, mean that you will need to draw on the full range of your experience and relationship building capability to be immediately effective, providing coherent and inspiring leadership to our own people whilst building strong relationships with our stakeholders in DCMS, Whitehall and industry to maximise support and cooperation.

A dynamic Chief Executive, you will be accustomed to performing highly visible, scrutinised roles; invested in the opportunity to make a positive difference through the application of your broad skill set.  Strategic and change orientated, you will have transformed organisations in support of business strategies, and you will thrive in complex and changing landscapes. Commercially and financially astute, you will have the capability, conviction and credibility to review and reset every aspect of our operation if necessary, building internal capability and inspiring outstanding performance at all levels to maximise the relevance and impact of our approaches.  Whilst specific regulatory experience and professional knowledge of the gambling industry are highly desirable, they are not imperative. What is most important is your ability to operate with the utmost integrity during a period of substantial change and scrutiny, enabling us to deliver our mandate to an outstanding level.

There is some flexibility regarding potential state [sic] date. Whilst an immediate start is desirable, we can also consider candidates who can join between now and August 2021.

For a confidential discussion, please contact Suzie Raffle on M: 07551 561199 or Craig Clarke on M: 07785 616547.

Recruitment Timetable


Closing Date

Sunday 9 May 2021


Shortlist Meeting

End of w/c Monday 10 May 2021


First Interview

w/c Monday 17 May 2021


Final Panel

w/c Monday 24 May 2021


How to Apply

To apply for this role, please submit an up to date copy of your CV, along with a Supporting Statement that addresses the criteria set out in the person specification, using examples to demonstrate how you meet the essential requirements. Please provide your home, work, mobile and email contact details and let us know of any dates when you are not available or where you may have difficulty with the indicative timetable. You should also provide the names, positions, organisations and contact details for two referees, one of whom should be your current or most recent employer. If you do not wish us to approach your referees without your prior permission, please state this clearly.

Once you have submitted your application, you will receive an automated email to confirm that you have applied. If you do not receive this email, please make contact with GatenbySanderson.

Continue to Full Details and Apply

Gambling Commission Chair

1. The following information regarding recruitment of a new Gambling Commission Chair appears on the Commission’s own website:

The Gambling Commission is currently recruiting a new Chair.

About us

The Gambling Commission was set up under the Gambling Act 2005 to regulate commercial gambling in Great Britain. The total annualised UK gross gambling yield is £14.3bn. It is a non-departmental public body (NDPB) sponsored by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS).

The Role

The Chair will lead the Commissioners of the Gambling Commission to deliver its statutory objectives and formulate and implement its strategic aims. The Chair’s responsibilities are:

  • strategic leadership of the Board in setting the overall direction, policy and plans for the Gambling Commission
  • supporting and holding the executive to account to ensure delivery of the Commission’s business plan and forward strategy
  • encouraging high standards of propriety and promoting the efficient and effective use of resources throughout the organisation
  • leading and motivating the Commissioners, and the Chief Executive, in undertaking their roles, including agreeing objectives and undertaking annual appraisals.

To execute the role successfully you will need the ability to lead the organisation and board of Commissioners working in a high profile and emotive policy area, while exercising impartiality and independent judgement, including while under close scrutiny. Throughout, the role will require high standards of integrity, corporate governance and principled leadership.

You will need to be able to build relationships and work with partners through excellent communication and influencing skills, while acting as a respected ambassador for the organisation and a supportive, challenging leader to the CEO and executive.

The Chair will be leading the organisation through the transition to a new National Lottery Licence, the Gambling Act Review and continued internal transformation, during an exciting but challenging period of change for the Commission.

To apply

More information and how to apply (opens in a new tab).

2. Whilst duplicating certain of the above information regarding “the role” of the new Chair of the Commission, the HM Government Public Appointments website provides the following additional information regarding the position:

Chair – Gambling Commission

Body: Gambling Commission
Appointing Department: Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Sectors: Culture, Media & Sport, Regulation
Location: Birmingham
Number of Vacancies: 1
Remuneration: £55,000 per annum.
Time Requirements: Two days per week, with an expectation that at least one day each week will be spent in the Commission’s Birmingham office.

Campaign Timeline

  • Competition Launched

    22/03/2021

  • Closed for Applications

    19/04/2021 at 23:00

  • Panel Sift

    w/c 17th May

  • Final Interview Date

    w/c 21st June

  • Announcement

    TBC

Assessment Panel
  • Ben Dean

DCMS Director of Sport and Gambling • Departmental Official

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  • Catharine Seddon

Senior Independent Director, Gambling Commission • Representative of Organisation

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  • Amerdeep Somal

Senior Independent Panel Member

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Vacancy Description

The Role

The Chair will lead the Commissioners of the Gambling Commission to deliver its statutory objectives and formulate and implement its strategic aims. The Chair’s responsibilities are:

  • Strategic leadership of the Board in setting the overall direction, policy and plans for the Gambling Commission;
  • Supporting and holding the executive to account to ensure delivery of the Commission’s business plan and forward strategy;
  • Encouraging high standards of propriety and promoting the efficient and effective use of resources throughout the organisation; and
  • Leading and motivating the Commissioners, and the Chief Executive, in undertaking their roles, including agreeing objectives and undertaking annual appraisals.

To execute the role successfully you will need the skills and abilities essential for chairing a high-profile public organisation as well as an understanding of fast moving, highly competitive markets and a knowledge of regulated industries.

The successful candidate must be able to demonstrate that they can command the confidence of the companies and organisations within the gambling industry and work constructively with the new National Lottery operator, as well as have empathy and respect within the consumer landscape. A knowledge of the workings of Government would be a particular advantage.

The role demands close working relationships with diverse stakeholders, however, the candidate must also demonstrate the ability to ensure sufficient detachment to be seen as independent and driving standards within the industry.

The Priorities

Key policy areas and therefore priorities for the Chair at present include:

  • Managing a successful competition for the 4th National Lottery Licence and the transition to the new Licence. 
  • Responding appropriately and effectively to the forthcoming Gambling Act review.
  • Continuing to drive improvements in consumer protection and prevention of harm, and evaluating the impact and success of changes already introduced.
  • Anti-Money Laundering (AML) / illegal gambling related issues.

Key organisational priorities for the Chair at present include:

  • Leading the Board and organisation at a time of significant scrutiny, including implementing the key recommendations identified as a result of recent Public Accounts Committee and House of Lords Committee reports. 
  • Overseeing the successful implementation of an ambitious internal change project to optimise the progressive culture within the organisation.

Person Specification

Essential criteria:

Candidates must be able to demonstrate:

  • The ability to lead an organisation in a high-profile and emotive policy area, including the ability to exercise impartial and independent judgement, drawing sound conclusions that are capable of justification under close scrutiny;
  • The ability to lead the Board of Commissioners, working collaboratively to optimise the input of Commissioners, lead strategy and provide effective challenge and support to the CEO and executive. 
  • Strong relationship building skills, with the ability to command respect, and the ability to work with partners and other stakeholders to achieve objectives;
  • Excellent communication and influencing skills including the ability to operate effectively and comfortably as an ambassador for the organisation; and
  • High standards of integrity, and an understanding of the principles and practices of corporate governance.

Additional Information

The appointments process adheres to the Cabinet Office Governance Code on Public Appointments, which is regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments. All applicants are expected to have adhered to the Seven Principles of Public Life.

Diversity and inclusion

DCMS values and cares passionately about the diversity of it’s public appointments. Boards of public bodies should reflect our diverse society in order to ensure the sector has a leadership that draws fully on the different skills and perspectives our country has to offer.

We strongly encourage applications from all candidates and particularly welcome applications from women, those with a disability, and those from a black or ethnic minority background.

We ask all applicants to complete a diversity monitoring form. We hope you will help us by providing this information. Your data is not disclosed to the panel, but allows us to constantly evaluate any potential barriers to becoming a public appointee and whether there are any changes we could make to encourage a more diverse field to apply.

Disability Confidant

We guarantee to interview anyone with a disability whose application meets the minimum criteria for the role. By ‘minimum criteria,’ we mean that you must provide evidence in your application, which demonstrates that you meet the level of competence required under each of the essential criteria. If you want to apply under this scheme, simply state this in the covering email or letter when submitting your application.

If you would like a confidential discussion regarding any reasonable adjustments during the process, please also indicate this in the covering email or letter.

Eligibility Criteria

You cannot be considered for a public appointment if:

  • you become bankrupt or make an arrangement with a creditor
  • your estate has been sequestrated in Scotland or you enter into a debt arrangement programme under Part 1 of the Debt Arrangement and Attachment (Scotland) Act 2002 (asp 17) as the debtor or have, under Scots law, granted a trust deed for creditors;
  • you are disqualified from acting as a company director under the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986;
  • you have been convicted of a criminal offence, the conviction not being spent for the purposes of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (c. 53);
  • you become subject to a debt relief order or a bankruptcy restrictions order;
  • you fail to declare any conflict of interest.

Conflicts of Interest and Due Diligence

If you have any interests that might be relevant to the work of the Gambling Commission, and which could lead to a real or perceived conflict of interest if you were to be appointed, please provide details in your application. If you have queries about this and would like to discuss further please contact the Public Appointments Team.

Given the nature of public appointments, it is important that those appointed as members of public bodies maintain the confidence of Parliament and the public. If there are any issues in your personal or professional history that could, if you were appointed, be misconstrued, cause embarrassment, or cause public confidence in the appointment to be jeopardised, it is important that you bring them to the attention of the Advisory Assessment Panel and provide details of the issue(s) in the statement supporting your application. In considering whether you wish to declare any issues, you should also reflect on any public statements you have made, including through social media.

As part of our due diligence checks we will consider anything in the public domain related to your conduct or professional capacity. This will include us undertaking searches of previous public statements and social media, blogs or any other publicly available information. This information may be made available to the Advisory Assessment Panel and they may wish to explore issues with you should you be invited to interview. The information may also be shared with ministers and the Cabinet Office.

How to Apply

To apply, please send:

  • a CV of not more than two sides of A4
  • a supporting statement of not more than three sides of A4, providing examples and setting out how you meet the criteria
  • the Diversity Monitoring Form concerning your personal information and political activity, and
  • the Declaration of Interests Form

Completed applications should be emailed to: [email protected]

Please put ‘Gambling Commission Chair’ in the subject line.

If you have any questions about the appointments process, please email: [email protected]

You can download below the “Chair Candidate Pack”.


It would appear possible that news of the appointment of the Interim Chief Executive may be forthcoming at the end of May or during June 2021, and news of the appointment of the new Chair at the end of June or during July 2021. We will keep you informed of further news relating to both appointments.

Download article PDF: GC Chair Candidate Pack