Governance Analysis Tool™

Improve your board’s effectiveness with our self-assessment survey for boards.


Take your performance to the next level.

The tool is a useful, efficient and effective method of focusing attention on the governance system as a whole and identifying the areas the board believes are its strengths and where there are opportunities for improvement. It allows the board to achieve collective clarity on the key levers at its disposal that may contribute to enhanced performance.

Based on the Corporate Governance Framework™, the Governance Analysis Tool™ is the product of years of development, using knowledge and experience gained from a cross-section of our most senior directors and created with one mission in mind - to build a stronger governance environment for business.

The Governance Analysis Tool is based on our proprietary Corporate Governance Framework. This framework is categorised into four distinct areas:

The Stakeholder

This component focuses on the approach taken by the board concerning accountability to, and communication and engagement with, key stakeholders.

Individual director

Here the framework comprises attributes of individual directors, including an understanding of role and duties, competence, leadership qualities and behaviours, and the responsibilities and style of the chair.

The Organisation

This quadrant relates to how the board's governance practices permeate the organisation as a whole in the context of its regulatory compliance, its executive and management personnel, its resourcing, its strategy, its risk management and its performance.

The Board

This section covers the qualities and operation of the board as a combined team of directors including use of committees, effectiveness of meetings, board dynamics, group competencies, and understanding and compliance systems relating to legal standards.

Using the framework, our current service includes options for:

  • Listed
  • Commercial unlisted (Pty Ltd/public unlisted)
  • Not-for-profit
  • Public sector

We also have reviews suitable for:

  • Co-operative/mutual organisations
  • Board committees

Should your governance review need to achieve specific outcomes, speak to us about how we can create a review to suit your needs.

The  Governance Analysis Tool has been adapted to allow for differing levels of insight. It is possible for a review to cover the entire governance framework in standard depth, in closer detail, or to target specific aspects of it. This all depends on the particular needs of your board.

The different forms of the tool offer boards varying insights as well as supporting governance learning and development. There are many scenarios in which the Tool can offer support. If a board has one particular area of difficulty, is looking to benchmark its performance year-on-year, or needs assistance reviewing outdated frameworks.


Governance Analysis Tool reviews may be undertaken in a wide variety of circumstances.

For example:

  • A seasoned listed company board decides it wants to undertake a Governance Analysis Tool review to supplement its bi-annual board evaluations conducted by an external consultant.

  • A company secretary of a large public company has been tasked with sourcing a fresh approach to the board’s review process, having used the same questionnaire for three consecutive cycles.

  • A mid-sized not-for-profit organisation's board decides to undertake a board review with a view to considering external board consultants in the future.

  • A new chair is appointed to the board and wishes to get some early readings from other board members as to where they see governance strengths and opportunities for improvement.

  • A chair is finding it difficult to draw out board members’ views on particular issues and wants to provide a safe and systematic way in which they can provide their views.

  • A chair of a public sector company is looking to build consensus around an action plan aimed at improving the performance of the board.

  • A listed company with many subsidiaries, or a not-for-profit with a federated structure, seeks a uniform framework by which subsidiary boards are assessing their governance practices across the group.

All boards differ in their approach to reviews and evaluations. Whether to be used as an initial 'yardstick' for the board, or a more detailed and comprehensive review, the Governance Analysis Tool can be tailored to meet your specific needs.

Once underway, proficiency statements are provided to each board member via a confidential online survey. Members are asked to provide feedback on how, in their view, the effectiveness of their organisation's governance measures against these statements of good practice.

Individual results are collated, analysed and provided back to the board in report form. Key to the analysis is the heat map and the spider graph (below). Boards then have the option of undertaking a facilitated discussion session to explore the findings in greater detail.

Simple and straightforward, the process includes:

  • A chair and board briefing on the review;
  • Secure and confidential online survey for each director to complete;
  • A written report reflecting your board’s collective response, drawn from analysis and collated by a governance expert;
  • A one-on-one discussion with the chair to detail the findings; and
  • A fully facilitated 60-minute session with the board. 

The entire process is led by an AICD representative.

Heat Map - see the board’s high level results mapped against our framework in a snapshot.

GAT Heat map

Spider Graph - pinpoint the response variation across the board.

GAT spider map

The Governance Analysis Tool allows boards to clearly identify its strengths and opportunities for improvement. 

  1. Relevance - The assessment consists of four specifically-designed modules, tailored to the differing needs and requirements of each board.

  2. Expert facilitation - Our specialists are senior directors chosen for their sector experience and subject matter expertise.

  3. Confidentiality - Survey responses are confidential to the individual and only reported in aggregated, non-attributable form, unless instructed otherwise by survey participants.

  4. Benchmarking - Over time the Governance Analysis Tool can be used as a means to benchmark a board's performance year to year, and against other organisations.

  5. Consensus - The assessment fosters collective clarity regarding governance strengths and where opportunities for improvement may lie. This results in a common view of what to focus on for better organisational performance moving forward.

  6. Time commitment - available in three different levels of granularity, so that even for time-poor directors can benefit from the Tool.

  7. Assurance - Use  of the Governance Analysis Tool provides stakeholders with a level of assurance that the board is committed to regular reflection and review against a robust and credible framework.

  8. User friendliness - Our surveys present information in a concise and practical manner.

  9. DPD units – All products and services of the Governance Analysis Tool count towards your Director Professional Development units.


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