Recruitment methods prevent charities having diverse boards, says a Charity Commission report published yesterday.
According to the report, 68 per cent of charities attract new trustees through word of mouth. Among the largest charities this figure increases to 85 per cent.
The Commission is concerned that recruiting via word of mouth means trustees always come from a similar background. The report says: "(This is) likely to actively work against diversity."
The Commission believes that diversity on charity boards is essential for increasing accountability and public confidence.
More inclusive recruitment methods are neglected. Only 3 per cent advertise positions and 1 per cent use a trustee brokerage service.
The report also found that information provided for new trustees was often inadequate. Only 55 per cent were given a copy of the charity's governing document and 69 per cent received a copy of the charity's accounts.