As a self-governing public body, the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit - BA) acts independently within the framework of the German Social Code Book Three (SGB III) - Employment Promotion (Arbeitsförderung).
The central institution of self governance of the Federal Employment Agency (BA) is the Board of Governors. Furthermore, each employment agency has an Administration Council that acts as local institution of self-governance. The institutions of self-governance and the Executive Board of the BA or the management boards of the employment agencies cooperate on a basis of trust in fulfilling the statutory objectives and tasks of the BA.
The Board of Governors consists of seven voluntary representatives for each of the three groups of employees, employers and public bodies; each group has equal rights. Thus, the groups of employees and employers as representatives of the premium payers of unemployment insurance are involved in the formation of business policies of the BA. Since July 2002, the responsibilities of the Board of Governors have been redefined and clearly separated from the responsibilities of the Executive Board, which is responsible for operative business.
The Board of Governors as institution of supervision and legislation monitors the work of the full-time Executive Board and advises on current labour market questions. It issues the BA's charter and annually determines the budget of the BA prepared by the Executive Board. It also approves the annual report which the Executive Board presents to the Federal Minister for Labour and Social Affairs (Bundesminister(in) für Arbeit und Soziales). For the active supervision and assistance of the work of the Executive Board, the Board of Governors has the right to demand assessments by internal auditing. In accordance with the regulations in the Stock Corporation Act (Aktiengesetz), it can also assign assessments to external experts. The Executive Board must report to the Board of Governors regularly and promptly in case of important causes.
Among the strategic duties of the Board of Governors is also the approval of business policy objectives as starting point of the process of budget determination as well as the continuous control of achievement of these objectives. Another important duty of the supervisory board of the BA is the control of active labour market policies and their effectiveness and efficiency.
The Administration Council of the Employment Agency also consists of three groups with equal rights (four members per group) and monitors the management board. It advises them on fulfilling their tasks.