Diligent is a safe bet for Ladbrokes
Ladbrokes plc is a leader in the global betting and gaming market. It is a FTSE 250 company, with annual Group revenues of over £1 billion. In the UK, it has more than 2,200 shops, as well as a strong online presence. It employs 15,000 people across the world.
Ladbrokes Legal and Secretariat provides papers and services over 30 meetings a year. In addition to the main board, this includes an executive committee, audit committee, nominations committee, remuneration committee and a social responsibility committee.
Like many organisations, Ladbrokes faced several challenges when producing board papers ahead of meetings, including improving security and the desire to reduce paper and become more digitally-enabled. But its main reason for looking at a digital board portal was to come up with a system that was more efficient and cost-effective than relying on paper.
Before using the Diligent Boards™ solution, Ladbrokes created a digital version of its board papers using a third-party solution, but still relied on paper printing and physical distribution via courier as the directors did not find the user-interface easy to use. This was both time consuming and expensive and the company was using tens of thousands of sheets of paper each year.
Adrian Bushnell, Ladbrokes’ Company Secretary said: “Ladbrokes needed a more economical solution that at least matched the existing cost of producing and distributing packs. Following an assessment of our costs of paper and print (based on the number and nature of board packs typically produced) together with the cost of couriers to circulate the packs to the directors, a move to a new digital platform would generate costs savings.”
Ladbrokes implemented Diligent Boards in October 2013. Bushnell said: “Diligent Boards was a stand-out choice. From our cost calculations, we knew that it would save us money when it came to producing and circulating the board materials, which was a requirement of our Finance Director.”
There were other features that appealed to Ladbrokes too. As well as distributing materials ahead of meetings, Ladbrokes uses the Diligent Boards Resource Centre on the app to share useful information – such as industry analyst notes and competitor information – for board and committee members’ in-between meetings.
Using Diligent Boards has saved money for Ladbrokes when compared to the production and distribution of paper packs. There has been a significant saving in time, too. Bushnell said: “We expected Diligent to save us time but weren’t prepared for how significant the time saving turned out to be. Previously it could take a PA as much as two full days to produce, collate and distribute papers for each meeting. This has been reduced to just an hour or two. That equates to a saving of around a month each year.”
There were added benefits, as Bushnell explained: “We’re now able to get the papers out for review a day sooner. This means that directors have more time to review the materials which in turn improves the quality of debate in the meetings. And, of course, we’ve saved tens of thousands of sheets of paper.”