News story

Acas council reappointments confirmed

The Business Secretary has confirmed the reappointment of Jane McNeill, Mike Gooddie, Neil Carberry and Paul Nowak as members of the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) Council.


The reappointment to the Acas Council of the 4 members has been confirmed today (21 April 2017) by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Acas provides free and impartial information and advice to employers and employees on all aspects of workplace relations and employment law. It supports good relationships between employers and employees which underpin business success.

The Acas Council sets the strategic direction, policies and priorities for the organisation, and makes sure that the organisation meets its agreed strategic objectives and targets. It consists of the Chair and 11 employer, trade union and independent members, appointed by the Secretary of State.

Sir Brendan Barber, Chair of the Acas Council said:

I am delighted that the Acas Council will continue to benefit from my colleagues’ invaluable experience in the field of employment relations. They play an essential role as independent and impartial workplace experts.

I look forward to working with them for another 3 years strengthening our reputation as Britain’s number one employment relations service for businesses and employees.


Jane McNeill QC

Jane McNeill is a member and former Head of Old Square Chambers, a leading employment set of chambers. She has been involved in many important and test cases in the fields of employment and discrimination law, including the part-time workers’ pensions (Preston) litigation, the test cases in the Supreme Court and Court of Justice of the European Union concerning the calculation of holiday pay (Williams v BA) and the equal pay litigation.

She has acted for individuals, groups of individuals and NHS Trusts in cases at first instance and appellate level involving whistleblowing and the interpretation and implementation of disciplinary processes and procedures.

She has been a Queen’s Counsel since 2002, a fee-paid Employment Judge since 2000 and has sat as a Recorder in the County Court since 2006. She is an accredited and practising mediator.

Mike Gooddie

Mike is Director of Human Resources for the Canal & River Trust, prior to that he was vice president of Labour Relations for Asda.

Mike began his career with Shell as a graduate trainee working in both the UK and Australia, before progressing on to senior HR positions with British Airways, GNER and the BBC. He has held non-executive positions for Manchester Airport Group (MAG), Community Integrated Care (CIC) and York Archaeological Trust (YAT). He is a graduate of Leicester University and a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts Manufactures and Commerce (FRSA).

Neil Carberry

Neil Carberry is Director for Employment, Skills and Public Services at the CBI, a role he has held since February 2011. Neil has worked at the CBI for the past decade on a wide range of business issues, including employment, employee relations, pay, education, skills and public service reform.

He is a member of the CBI’s Management Board. Before joining the CBI, Neil worked in consultancy on HR issues for financial services firms. He is a member of the Low Pay Commission, which makes recommendations about the level of the UK’s National Minimum Wage. He has an MSc in Industrial Relations from the London School of Economics and is a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD. He is the Chair of BusinessEurope’s Employment Working Group.

Paul Nowak

Paul Nowak was appointed Assistant General Secretary of the TUC in February 2013, and was subsequently confirmed as Deputy General Secretary by the TUC General Council in February 2016.

He has responsibility for a number of key policy areas including public services and transport, and for the TUC’s organisation in the English regions and Wales, union organising, inter-union relations and the organisation of the TUC’s annual Congress.

These reappointments have been made in accordance with the Cabinet Office’s Governance Code on Public Appointments. The appointments process is regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments.

Published 21 April 2017