Jane Kingston, having served on the Board over the past two years, took over from Sir Andrew Foster as Chair of the Remuneration Committee on 6 May 2015.
Given her background, experience and specific interest in People issues generally across the Group, Jane has created the time and opportunity to visit some ten sites across all our divisions in the UK, Spain and North America in order to better understand how she might add value and influence, as well as challenge, human resource initiatives in her Non-Executive capacity.
In the North American School Bus business, Jane has been impressed by some great people on the front line – drivers, maintenance teams – all of whom are committed to the safe transport of children and serving the client school boards. Whilst in the US prior to the September Board meeting, Jane was actively involved in an employee focus group at the Memphis Customer Service Centre. She and the local management team wanted to hear directly from our people on their thoughts on what it is like to work for the Durham School business.
Jane said: “This initiative worked very well with some insightful and positive contributions being made at every level. The conclusion was reached that Durham Schools was a good place to work with some thoughtful ideas having emerged which will be followed through over the coming year.”
The focus group programme will be developed and rolled out across a number of sites in North America and the UK.
As part of our talent development and succession planning process, we launched the ‘National Express Network’ in early December. The Network, probably the first worldwide gathering of its kind within the transport industry, enables graduates from our bus, rail and coach operations in the UK, Spain and North America to learn from each other and work more closely together as well as maximising their own individual potential. Jane attended the launch event held at the Warwick Business School along with the Executive Directors and other members of the Senior Management Group. Jane praised the structure of the inaugural meeting of the Network which had been well received by our young talent pool across the businesses. Jane believes that such opportunities to meet Board members and the Senior Management Group are valuable and inspirational. “This type of initiative is very powerful for our graduates, enabling their eyes to be opened to the range of opportunities available to them during the course of their career with National Express. They know what they belong to,” she said.