It was once a requirement for private limited companies to have both a director and a company secretary. These days having a secretary is optional for private limited companies, although it’s still a requirement for public companies to appoint a suitably qualified company secretary.
If your business does have a company secretary then their role can vary. They’ll often be responsible for providing advice and guidance about the governance of the company as well as more broadly administrative tasks. Again, this can be very varied, but might include:
Keeping records about who is involved in the business, such as directors and shareholders, and their rights and responsibilities
Submitting reports and accounts
Arranging the company’s Annual General Meeting, giving proper notice, and circulating any documents before or after it takes place
There were originally restrictions that meant sole directors were unable to act as company secretary but this is no longer the case for private companies. Nowadays anyone (within reason!) can be a secretary in a private company, though it’s the directors’ responsibility to choose someone with knowledge and experience for the job.
In public companies the company secretary must be someone with a professional qualification or membership to a proper governing body, such as an accountant or solicitor.