Current shortcomings of the Board and WIA

Conflict of Interest by Board members

Are decisions being made in best interest of members?  Do Board members understand their responsibilities vis-à-vis conflict of interest and transparency?  Have financial decisions been made with impartiality and without regard for personal gain?  Did the Board ensure the correct skill set was appointed to the role of Executive Administrator and to the office change process?

  1. The President advised members that an office review was being conducted by an external contractor.
  2. Appointment of “external consultant” Silverdale Training & Development to conduct an Office Review. WIA Director, Fred Swainston is also a director of Silverdale Training & Development. This fact has not been revealed to members.
  3. WIA Director Fred Swainston was appointed to the interim role of Executive Administrator following the office review.
  4. WIA Director Fred Swainston remained on the Board whilst in the paid capacity of Executive Administrator.
  5. Was the Board able to ensure adequate reviews and approvals of the contract with Fred Swainston whilst he remained on the Board?


Inappropriate conduct by Board members

Volunteers are resigning; Board effectiveness is compromised; missed opportunities; WIA members suffer; trust is compromised.

  1. Since the middle of 2015, two Treasurers and one assistant Treasurer have resigned due to poor conduct of other Board members.
  2. In December 2015 a Board Member resigned due to poor conduct of other Board members.
  3. Considerable membership funds are now being used to pay an accountant to act as Treasurer.
  4. Membership funds are being used to remedy financial process failures as a result of ill-considered decisions by the Board during the latter part of 2015.


Inadequate and unprofessional methods to conduct business/office review

Wasted money, time and opportunity to bring effective improvements to the operation of the WIA National Office; new problems have been introduced due to lack of leadership and appropriate consultation.

  1. The review was treated as a “mission of discovery”.
  2. No/limited interviews were conducted with volunteers who understood office processes.
  3. No formal methodology was applied to the review.
  4. No documentation of findings or recommendations was provided to the Board.
  5. New problems and issues have been created as a detailed assessment of changes was not performed.
  6. Critical negative impacts to financial processes as a result of the change process; very little consideration was given to financial processes, compliance or performance.


Lack of Risk Management by the WIA Board

No consideration to plan for risks; exposing WIA and members to high risks without any mitigation plans.


No documented Strategic Plan for WIA

No vision or clear strategy to guide the WIA Board or functional committees.


No succession planning by the Board

No planning for resignations/unexpected Board or key vacancies.


Lack of effective engagement with WIA Affiliated Clubs

Many clubs feel disenfranchised with the WIA.  What is the WIA doing for clubs and club members?  Other than the public liability insurance, what value does a club (or its members) receive by being an affiliated club?


Failure to progress access to 1.9 & 70 MHz band allocations

In 2015, two WIA members laid the groundwork for possible access to two new bands.  The WIA Board chose not to progress this opportunity.

  1. Members have missed out on possible improved access to radio spectrum.
  2. The Board has not informed members of this opportunity, nor have they explained why this opportunity was not seized.
  3. Why is our Board is not pursuing opportunities like this?


WIA Website, platform and support service is inadequate

The WIA web site is built on a proprietary Content Management System. The support documentation is unknown.

  1. It’s not mobile friendly; try accessing the WIA website from your smart phone or tablet….
  2. The website contains out-of-date information. Many pages have not been updated for years.
  3. One Director has control of the website; this places the burden of maintenance and information updates on a single person. This introduces exposures and risks for the WIA.


Inadequate and out-of-date use of IT Systems to support office, membership and committee functions

WIA business operations are inefficient and ineffective.  Using work practices and management styles from the last century for many process and functions; the Board chose to ignore a recommendation to migrate to more modern IT systems in 2015.  The report and recommendations were written by people with relevant professional experience.


2016 AGM Ballot did not conform to the WIA Election Regulations – the process appeared to be “broken”.

Potentially, some members have missed the right to vote.  Key dates for notifications were missed. Can the Board be trusted to run a clean election process?

  1. Failure to appoint returning officer by due date.
  2. Failure to notify members in AR Magazine by due date.
  3. Failure to post ballot papers by due date.
  4. Failure to ensure all members (eg. Digital AR subscribers) were sent ballot papers.


Refusal and inability to prepare P&L statements during second half of 2015

Lack of responsible financial management. Lack of active decision making with member’s money.


The Board ignored two significant warnings that the National Office had introduced significant financial management issues.

  1. A report with specific details was provided to the Board at their February meeting.
  2. Is this Board experienced enough to manage member’s money? Does the board have control of member’s money?
  3. Former Director Rowan Dollar raised major concerns in late 2015 and was ignored.
  4. Former Treasurer Chris Chapman raised major concerns in February 2016 and was ignored.
  5. The Board has now chosen to spend more member’s money paying an accountant to act as Treasurer. Have the underlying issues been addressed?